Graduate profile – Kai Smith
BIMM Brighton graduate Kai Smith completed a BA (Hons) degree in Professional Musicianship back in 2010. Since then, he has been forging a career as a session musician, performing live alongside the likes of Dua Lipa, Zara Larson, MØ, Alma, Charlie XCX, Example, Karen Harding and Slaves.
His live and studio performances include arena tours, stadiums and headline festival slots, with televised gigs on Saturday Night Live, Jools Holland, Radio1 Live Lounge, Jimmy Kimmel and ever-popular Ellen DeGeneres show. See Kai playing keyboards and samples at stage left in this amazing video!
Kai got his first big break in the session industry as the guitarist for EDM rapper Example. Here’s one of his earlier televised performances live on the Graham Norton show.
When he’s not touring, Kai spends his time between LA and London doing a mixture of live & studio session work on various instruments including guitar, keys, piano, bass, vocals and also acting as musical director for more than a few acts. He also keeps himself busy with songwriting and production credits which have seen him scoring UK Top 15 singles and albums with the likes of JME, Wretch 32, Avelino, Olivia O’Brien, StarRo, Marteen, Donae’o, P Money, The Heavytrackerz, Dirtyphonics, The Flexican, Jewelz & Sparks, Fred V and Grafix.
A great example of Kai’s production skills is the official Youtube channel of fellow session musician and Chainsmokers drummer, Matt McGuire. In the following track video, Kai performed guitars, keys, arrangement and production duties.
Kai has been generous enough to return to his old haunt of BIMM Brighton on more than one occasion to give Masterclasses on what it takes to be a successful session musician and producer. Read more about the content of these Masterclasses.