Walter Smetak

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Anton Walter Smetak (Zurich, Switzerland, 13 February 1913 – Salvador, Brazil, 30 May 1984) was a Swiss-born musician, composer, writer, sculptor and producer of musical instruments.

Life and works[edit]

Walter Smetak was born in Zurich of Czech origin and migrated to Brazil in 1937. He was a composer and inventor of instruments with which he would then play and conduct. Relatively unknown, he is considered a forerunner and early influence on the musicians and artists who would form the core of Tropicalia, such as Caetano Veloso, Gilberto Gil, Tom Zé and Torquato Neto. One of his best known works is the experimental album titled Smetak, released in Brazil in 1974. Deeply involved in the Brazilian music scene of the 1960s and 1970s, Walter Smetak would collaborate with the likes of Gilberto Gil, Tom Zé, Uakti and others. The musician died in Salvador in 1984.