This week we wish a happy 56th birthday to Robert Smith. In his decades-long rock career, Smith has collaborated with tons of artists, like Siouxsie and the Banshees, Blink-182, Billy Corgan, Korn, Crystal Castles, and many others, but he is most widely known as the frontman for the Cure. In addition to being a guitarist and lead vocalist, Smith has been the primary songwriter for the band that has brought us dozens of enduring heartbreakers, like “Pictures of You,” “Boys Don’t Cry,” and “To Wish Impossible Things.” They have also brought us spunkier numbers like “Fascination Street,” and the deliciously creepy songs “One Hundred Years” and “From the Edge of the Deep Green Sea.” But his most relentless hit, by far, has to be “Friday I’m In Love.” Whether or not the general populace knows that’s a Cure song, I’d be willing to bet that at least 95 percent of Americans and 99.9 percent of people in England would recognize the melody on any given day.
Smith has taken a lot of grief over the years for his unusual look and moody presence, but with a catalogue as extensive as his, it is unfair to judge his merits solely on how squeamish he makes the uninitiated feel at concerts. And though nowadays he honestly looks like he has one foot in the grave, if continuing to make music is what he wants to do, then he should keep on going for as long as he wants. It is highly possible that Smith’s best work is behind him, but then again, who’s to say. So happy birthday and many, many more to this prolific musician and songwriter.