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What is Patti Smith’s Net Worth?
Patti Smith is an American musician and visual artist who has a net worth of $4 million. Patti Smith is a singer-songwriter, musician, and writer who is regarded as one of the most influential artists of the New York City punk rock movement. Her most famous song, co-written with Bruce Springsteen, is “Because the Night,” which peaked at number 13 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1978. As an author, Smith has published numerous poetry collections, and won the National Book Award in 2010 for her memoir “Just Kids.”
Patti Smith was born on December 30, 1946 in Chicago, Illinois to machinist Grant and jazz singer-turned-waitress Beverly. She has three younger siblings named Kimberly, Linda, and Todd. At the age of four, Smith moved with her family to Germantown, Pennsylvania. They later moved to Pitman, New Jersey, and then to Deptford Township, New Jersey. Smith went to Deptford Township High School, graduating in 1964. She subsequently enrolled at Glassboro State College, but dropped out in 1967.
After leaving college, Smith moved to New York City. There, she met photographer Robert Mapplethorpe, with whom she began a turbulent romantic and professional relationship. In 1969, Smith traveled to Paris with her sister and began busking and doing performance art. Returning to New York, Smith took on a variety of art projects, acting in the plays “Femme Fatale,” “Island,” and “Cowboy Mouth” and doing writing, performing, and painting with the St. Mark’s Poetry Project. She also contributed lyrics to a number of songs by the band Blue Öyster Cult, and did rock journalism for Creem and Rolling Stone.
Patti Smith Group
In the early 70s, Smith became known for her rock performances with guitarist Lenny Kaye. Later, the pair was joined by Ivan Kral, Richard Sohl, and Jay Dee Daugherty to become the Patti Smith Group. The band was subsequently signed by Arista Records’ Clive Davis. In 1975, the Patti Smith Group released its debut album, “Horses,” which combined spoken poetry with punk rock. The group’s second album, “Radio Ethiopia,” came out the following year. While touring to support the album in Florida, Smith accidentally fell off the stage into a concrete orchestra pit, breaking several vertebrae in her neck. After recovering, she returned to the band to record the album “Easter,” which became the Patti Smith Group’s commercial breakthrough upon its release in 1978. Notably, the album launched the hit single “Because the Night,” which was co-written by Bruce Springsteen. The fourth and final album by the Patti Smith Group, “Wave,” was released in 1979.
Following the dissolution of the Patti Smith Group, Smith released her first album as a solo artist: 1988’s “Dream of Life.” She didn’t put out her next album, “Gone Again,” until 1996; in between, Smith dealt with the deaths of many of her close friends, including her husband, her brother Todd, and her former collaborators Robert Mapplethorpe and Richard Sohl. Smith next released “Peace and Noise” and “Gung Ho” in 1997 and 2000, respectively. In 2004, she released “Trampin’,” which payed homage to her recently deceased mother. Smith has since released “Twelve,” an album of covers, and “Banga,” which features guest appearances from Jack Petruzzelli, Tom Verlaine, and Casa del Vento, among other artists.
Smith has been just as prolific an author as she has been a musician. In 1972, she released her first book, the poetry collection “Seventh Heaven.” The same year, she released the chapbook “A Useless Death.” This was followed by the poetry collections “Witt” and “The Night.” In 1978, Smith released “Babel,” which features a mix of her poems, lyrics, prose, photographs, and drawings. Further releases were “Early Work,” “The Coral Sea,” “Strange Messenger,” “Auguries of Innocence,” “Land 250,” and “Trois.” One of Smith’s most notable written works is her memoir “Just Kids,” which came out in 2010; in it, she details her relationship with Robert Mapplethorpe. Smith gained further recognition for her 2015 memoir “M Train.” For the audiobook recording, she earned a Grammy Award nomination for Best Spoken Word Album.
Smith has been involved in a number of activist endeavors over the years. In 1993, she contributed to the AIDS benefit album “No Alternative.” Later, in the early 2000s, she became a vocal supporter of the Green Party, and of Ralph Nader in particular. Smith spoke and sang at early protests against the war in Iraq, and also performed anti-war concerts and readings at various venues.
Smith had her first child, a daughter, in 1967; she placed the child for adoption shortly after. Following this, she began a turbulent relationship with Robert Mapplethorpe. Smith was later in relationships with actor and writer Sam Shepard and musician Allen Lanier. In the early 80s, she married guitarist Fred Smith, with whom she had a son named Jackson and a daughter named Jesse. Fred passed away in 1994 from a heart attack.
Smith is the subject of Steven Sebring’s 2008 documentary “Patti Smith: Dream of Life.”