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Jay Smith

Dave Mahalik

Jay Smith, a Cape Breton guitarist best known for playing with Matt Mays, died on suddenly in his hotel room Wednesday night after a show with Matt Mays and El Torpedo while the Nova Scotia band was on tour in Edmonton.

Smith first performed with his own band, Rock Ranger, which released two albums before he joined Mays's band, and playing on the Juno-nominated album, Terminal Romance. In 2009 Smith won an East Coast Music Award SOCAN Songwriter of the Year for co-writing (with Gordie Sampson) the song "We Are Young and so is the Night."

We spoke with Dave Mahalik about Jay's contribution to the island and to Canadian music.

Listen audio (runs 10:50)