Fred "Sonic" Smith (September 14, 1948 – November 4, 1994) played guitar for the MC5 and led Sonic's Rendezvous Band. He was married to Patti Smith.


Smith played guitar (along with Wayne Kramer) for MC5, and his thick, muscular riffs provided the ballistic brawn behind the band's sweaty mix of fist-pumping revolutionary rhetoric and head-banging incendiary protoo-metal. On the band's second album, Back in the USA, Smith penned and sang the melodic teen anthem, "Shakin' Street." He also wrote half the songs on the Five's final and best album, 1971's High Time, including the band's finest officially released moment, the heavy-metal meltdown "Skunk (Sonicaly Speaking)," which prophetically heralded a marriage between high-energy riff rock and high-intensity free jazz. After the Five's dissolution Smith formed the supergroup Sonic's Rendezvous Band with fellow Detroits from the Stooges, the Up, and the Rationals.

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