The one man that Gorillaz, Damon Albarn, Blur and Shaun The Sheep have in common is Michael Smith. Not surprisingly the versatile Mike has a solid track record in writing music for film and TV.
Most recently he wrote, produced and performed songs for Aardman’s animated feature, Shaun The Sheep: Farmageddon (2019) released later this year. Mike also won an RTS Best Music Award for his score to the Bristol-based hit independent film, 8 Minutes Idle (Arthur Cox, iFeatures, BBC Films, and Matador Pictures).
As a partner in Electric Wave Bureau, he co-composed and arranged the score for The Kid Who Would Be King (2018) as well as the award-winning Broken starring Tim Roth and Cillian Murphy.
Mike also orchestrated the score for Ealing Studios’ remake of Noel Coward’s Easy Virtue, starring Jessica Biel and Colin Firth, directed by Stephan Elliot. He orchestrated the score for Gorillaz’ hit opera Monkey King – Journey to the West for the Royal Opera House and Opera Chatelet in Paris. Mike was music supervisor for the show’s subsequent hugely successful run at New York City’s Lincoln Centre Festival.
Mike intersperses his film and TV scoring ambitions with extensive work alongside Damon Albarn, recording and touring with leading acts Blur, Gorillaz and The Good The Bad and The Queen. As an original member of Gorillaz’ live band Mike was Musical Director for the box office-busting Gorillaz 2010 world tour including historic performances in Syria and Lebanon. They have recently completed 2 major world tours of ‘Humanz’ and ’The Now Now’.
He was an integral part of Damon Albarn’s live solo project ‘The Heavy Seas’, performing Albarn’s solo album ‘Everyday Robots’ for which Mike wrote the string arrangements.
Mike worked in collaboration with exiled conductor and leader Essam Rafea on live shows for The Orchestra of Syrian Musicians. This was produced by Africa Express and among others featured Damon Albarn, Paul Weller and Julia Holter. It was performed at London’s Royal Festival Hall and the opened the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury Festival in 2016.