A page for all the wonderful things people have said about Margot, reviews, links to reviews and other commentary on the web.

Importantly, the comments section will be open to people wishing to leave messages, thoughts and wishes.

Recent Quotes:

“Any fool could see she was a MAJOR talent one of those rare individuals who could not sing a wrong note. Her voice swooped, soared, roared, crooned, cruised and bruised but always with perfect pitch.  She never faltered once and she never sang a song the same way twice neither. She constantly changed the words n melodies she did not see a song as a fixed idea she just let it happen every time n her muse never deserted her. She just made lyrics up on the spot too a la Grant McLennan. Words flew into her head outta thin air..”here at last was true talent…an incredible tuneful mellifluous voice, the only voice comparable was Kate Bush. The same power n glory, the same sweeping range operatic mastery. Margot i always always believed in you. You should’ve been striding the big stages of this world ‘cos you were one of the best I ever heard”

– Steve Kilbey 2011 (from his blog


 ” The creative musical chemistry I shared with Margot Smith was comparable to mine with the church and she was happy to be described as our little sister. On the final section of my song Leaving, she contributed her parts and her glorious vocals took it to a soulful and spiritual peak like no other. We were also very pleased with the muse’s gift to us in The Gospel Song which Margot believed could be about herself and reveals a lot about her.”

Peter Koppes 2011.


“Arguably the most poetically and melodically arousing woman and voice that Australia has mothered,  so sadly not known by the masses in the way that would easily befit her depth as an artist . . . effortless and dangerous, both embracing and sensually threatening all at once,  we miss her creative presence.  Her collaboration with Crackerbox as the disturbed voice of mother nature, mother of Earth, the Planet Queen, has given this track the most perfect balance of optimism and impending tragedy.”

Tim Powles 2011.



Steve Kilbey wrote about Margot in his blog in August 2010 (The Time Being )

during the early nineties
a guy from emi gave me a demo tape that knocked my sox off
it was some unknown from melbourne called margot smith
i rushed home n played it to my then girlfriend karin jansson
who was also similarly blown away
here at last was true talent
an incredible tuneful mellifluous voice
the only voice comparable was kate bush
the same power n glory
the same sweeping range operatic mastery
the lyrics n melodies were fucking brilliant
my fave lyric was from a song called dream
the song started with these incredible (to me) words
“everytime you say you want to die
i cant remember what you said”
and contained in those words n the way she sang em
is a world of ambiguity sadness denial and fantasy
did i want to produce her?
fuck yes!
i had my studio at surry hills then i guess this was 91
unfortunately i was going down that sad bad road with the “white lady”
although i guess you could say i was still in the honeymoon phase
margot turned up n we kinda hit it off i guess
she was precocious irreverent curious n amazingly naive
she was kinda annoying too
but any fool could see she was a Major talent
one of those rare individuals who could not sing a wrong note
her voice swooped soared roared crooned cruised and bruised but always with perfect pitch
she never faltered once
and she never sang a song the same way twice neither
she constantly changed the words n melodies
she did not see a song as a fixed idea
she just let it happen everytime n her muse never deserted her
she just made lyrics up on the spot too a la grant mclennan
words flew into her head outta thin air
i recorded half the album with her
eddie rayner from split enz did the other half
we co wrote a bunch of songs together too
“adored ” is margot having a pot shot at me
oh yes you are adored by a multitude of whores
selling their story at the door
oh i’d love to be adored as you are and you are”
she saw me battling the gear
she was just starting her long battle with the bottle too
so we were quite a pair
the engineer demanded a thousand bucks off emi as a ganja budget
and got it!
its a bloody great record
i wrote some good music for it
margot herself n her then boyfriend michael came up with the goods too
the torch song was my music n margots words about a brief affair i had had
she’d seen it happening n captured it all so succinctly
lifetime was another co write
listen to that voice n those words
“and if life could take you in his arms n hold you
and if time would let you sleep with him enfold you”
and margots “bellyman ” which she wrote on her own
“here i come , i’m the bellyman come to fill you up when you cant get full”
and of course that fabulous song dream the one that sold me on her
orchestral swelling guitars and margots wonderful singing
“you will be, i will be open wide, you n i know why”
god it still gives me gooseflesh
the first album was very ornate very elizabethan very grand in its scope
due to a number of bungles n mistakes it came out n did nothing
absolutely nothing
it sank without a trace n margot lost her deal
it was inexplicable
in anther time n place she woulda been a superstar
tori amos would have loved to have written some of those songs
the second album would be the opposite of all that
michael was gone
margot was on her own and still battling the booze
i had lost the battle with the gear n i was a full on reclusive fucked up wreck
still we got together at the new karmic hit in rozelle
opposite my house in mansfield street
me n margot n tim p n peter k
we were her band
i would knock out something real rough
and we’d play it like crazy horse
2 n 3 chord songs
listen to creature
its the antithesis of the melodrama of the first record
its lowdown mean n nasty
the whole record is quite something
loaded with real pain n guts no more artifice
its one of those classic messed up albums full of visceral ache
simple music
simple bleak sketches
simple sad words
the sounds of talented people falling apart
some tracks are just me on guitar n margots voice
“stretches” for example
“what stretches before me always comes back to get me”
tim n peter contribute the minimalistic expertise just so right
totalled is like, totalled, dude
totalled like me n margot were by then
wow it hurts just to listen to some it still
seek these records out
2 completely different beasts both incredible
the sad news is margot is now gravely ill
i’m gonna go round n see her as soon as she can receive a visitor or 2
she doesnt expect to be on this mortal plane for that much longer
she really did deserve success
she really did deserve recognition
those who have heard her are believers
she n i had our squabbles n fights
it was painful to watch each other succumb to our poisons
i miraculously got out
she wasnt so lucky
margot i always always believed in you
you should be bestriding the big stages of this world
cos you were one of the best i ever heard
peter koppes thinks the same
he took time out to play in her shortlived live band
margot you are beautiful
and your small devoted bunch of fans ADORE you
i’m crying as i write these words
i hear margots got one last record up her sleeve
i hope someone gets to hear it
i hope she can defy her grim medical prognosis
and get better n enjoy a little success
margot despite all my harsh words n stuff
i love you
i really do
you were a star that just burnt too bright for your own good
and the whole thing is just so unfair
people see if you can beg borrow or burn” sleeping with the lion”
or “taste”
you wont be disappointed
sk august 1 2010

Steve Kilbey again in April 2011 (The Time Being)

margot died yesterday
i guess it had to happen
fucking alcohol claims another victim
destroyed her god given talent
fucked her liver up nice and good
fucked her voice and fucked her mind
yeah and me
always too busy to talk
she’d ring me up
not now margot im so fucking bizzy havin’ an argument
not now margot i’m so fucking preoccupied with my own bullshit
margot came down to our last rehearsal with the orch
a skinny figure down the back dancing n singing along
swaying in her blitzed out way
all pale n gaunt like a weird woman
like someone from the middle ages she looked that last n final day
yeah we’ll catch up soon i said as i rushed off to the next important thing….
we were organising a gig for her may 22
she was gonna have a superstar band n everything
but i was always too busy to talk tho i had pledged my time to the project
anyway life finished her off
they say she may have died relatively peacefully relatively quickly
watch that word “relatively” tho
when your liver is packing it in after years of alcohol abuse
relatively is a relative term
i hope she didnt feel no fucken pain
i hope she drifted out of this sad n rotten world on a soft breeze
this vale of tears
this veil of tears
she called herself my sister
i wasnt much of a brother tho
bizzy busy bizzy i was always so busy bizzy
yeah i’ll catch up with ya soon little sister i’d say
now shes gone
did she know how much i couldnt bear to see what she’d done to herself
with the fuckin’ booze with the fuckin’ cigs…?
mind you she was elegantly wasted
a real damsel in distress
she was gutsy she was feisty she was a real fighter
but the filthy rotten poisonous grog killed her slow
she went down in agony over decades
as it stripped her first
everytime you say you want to die i cant remember what you said
of one thing n another
i hate alcohol
i hate what it does
this woman shoulda been singing for another 3 decades
sad day
sad song
sad man
sad tragic inevitable useless pointless waste of a rare and fabulous gift
margot i’m sorry i was so fucking hectically impossibly busy
too busy to chat to ya for ten minutes
i hope heaven treats ya better than earth
if you come back again bring that lovely voice to this earth
margot you were one hell of a singer n writer
why did it have to fucking well end like this?

Peter Koppes wrote in April 2011


I will not be at your funeral but you know my heart is with you. Your good friend and musical brother loves you like so many others who enjoyed your generosity of spirit and great music. See you on the other side and if I am right that we can take songs with us when we join the ether then we will again rejoice in the music we created together. It is weird to think I won’t hear your gracious voice of love on the phone again and we won’t be musing about the soul anymore. I guess you know the secrets now. Neither of us cared much for sport but your passing has reminded me of tumbling under a bunch of players in a school football game and being left behind stunned on the field as the play moved on and no-one noticing. I am shocked that you are gone and I feel more lonely. But you will be remembered for the artistic genius you are and that remains forever.

Admiringly Peter

Steve Lucas wrote in April 2011

Life is file, live is evil… love is not corrupable. Today I was informed a dearly beloved friend of mine passed away in her sleep last night. An angel among angels, gentle and loving soul having found peace at last. Be safe now Margot, I will miss your pressence but cherish your essence. Best of friends, words will not suffice… undying love…


7 Responses to Adored

  • Rajani Enderby says:

    A remarkable lady who was a true musical warrior. She has influenced the Australian independent music industry profoundly. Music from her 30 year long career, some fantastic songs co-written with eveyone from members of the Church (Steve Kilbey, Peter Koppes and Tim Powles) to Michael Wade and Ben Kross will featured at her tribute gig. Hope to see you at Notes Live (in Enmore) on the 18th of September.

    A big thanks to Ben Kross, Bec Shaw, Sue Campbell and Tim Powles for all their help in getting Margot’s gig up and running.

  • Frank says:

    I just purchased Inhuminane and I’m so impressed. It is a wonderful album from start to finish. The lovely piano piece that starts and ends the disc seems so appropriate, given the circumstances. Planet Queen is a great song. Margot’s voice just swoops and soars on that tune. The Gospel Song is another highlight for me. I love the little spoken intro. The new versions of older songs Drunk As and Leaving work so well in the context of the rest of the disc. Every song is beautifully sung, played and arranged. An energetic, terrific performance of Adored was a good choice as the second last song before it all quiety comes to a close with the reprise of The Secret. I understand John Kilbey recorded the album, but I’d love to know more about how Margot’s final artistic statement came together.

  • admin says:

    Thank you Frank, it’s great to know you enjoy Inhumaninane. Each track has its own story and Margot placed them in an order which expresses subtle threads throughout. It is the expression of a very personal world overlaid by a larger scale, humanity. “Inhuman” plus “inane” gives the title “Inhumaninane”, which sums up how Margot felt about many of the world’s larger problems, seeing often inhuman or inane solutions being offered and accepted as normal and also sadly coming to terms with her own mortality. There was much that she would have liked to do but for her illness. I believe that these are deep and unmistakably human sounds of concern and an overriding love for the subjects and she wanted to give this gift to those who understood. In Margot’s case, not many of us knew she was seriously ill until her last year.

    I’ve just opened comments up on the Inhumaninane release page and will encourage others involved with the album to keep an eye on it and give feedback. Hopefully your questions about the making of the album can be fleshed out there.

    Thank you again for posting Frank.

  • Frank says:

    Thanks so much for the informative reply. I just read the Inhumainane release page description of the album, which is beautifully written. Thank you for that as well. The album continues to be on steady play in my home. It really is wonderful. I’m a songwriter myself and often listen to the work of others thinking about their approach to a song in terms of interpretation and delivery. What amazes me about the music of Margot Smith is that she always gives a song exactly what it needs, no more, no less. And that her singing is as natural as breathing. She is spot-on, pitch perfect and her phrasing is wonderful. As much as I love other female singer-songwriters such as Kate Bush and Tori Amos — two artists that Margot Smith has been compared to — there’s often too much affectation in their singing style, which at a certain point diminishes the song itself. That can lead to a feeling of the art of the music as, in fact, artifice. In other words, too much theatre and not enough reality. I regret deeply that I really only discovered Margot Smith’s music near the end of her life. As a big fan of The Church for many years I had heard of Margot and her connection with Steve Kilbey. But I’d never experienced her music. Kilbey’s first Timebeing blog entry on her terminal illness made me decide to purchase Taste. It also led to me visiting her Myspace page and listening closely to her music. By the way, I loved the photos she posted of her last birthday party! Anyway, Taste is miraculous in so many ways, but I think the final disc is even better. Anyway, I am incredibly moved by Margot Smith’s music. I realize that she was greatly under-appreciated in Australia and practicaly unknown in this part of the world during her lifetime. But I plan to keep her candle burning here in Ottawa, Canada, play her music for anyone who will take the time to listen, and spread the word of Margot Smith’s great talent.

  • David Duchow says:

    An artist and a site to be adored. I’ve just listened to all the tracks that are posted here… some, old favourites; some, I’ve never heard before. It’s been a goose pimply day. I am truly amazed… and in love with her music. Thanks for doing this wonderful site/tribute to a very special person.

  • admin says:

    @Everyone @Frank @David Duchow

    Very glad to know you could connect with M’s creations here David. It will flesh out over time. She also has some links at the footer for some of her other places online (Sue Campbell has been keeping Margot’s web presence alive since the early/mid 90’s).

    I have just watched your beautiful video of Margot’s “Dream” on YouTube David (passed on by the very super Sue Campbell). Thank you for doing this! For me, it was very emotional. You have appropriately placed some very powerful imagery here as well as some extraordinarily tasteful obfuscations (can just make out M’s face at times, for example.. or is that me seeing what I want to see? Love it very much.) and your trademark overlays – thank you David – I really appreciate it. I’ll be adding more videos here soon; May I embed it on this site’s video page?

    Really glad you could track down a copy of Taste Frank! and it’s a sweet thing that you say you prefer Inhumaninane. Wow, I know Margot would love to know that it was someone’s favourite. She was running out of time, she could have put a dozen different albums together with all her material but “Inhumaninane” is how she wanted it except for also wanting to have lyrics/vocals by Sue and Steve on the reprise of The Secret. I helped her during much of last year to finish it and can say it went in several different explorative directions until eventually, this was the list of tracks that made her feel right each time. She wanted to say different things to different people, throw people, make them think, make it difficult to ‘get into’ but with a pay-load, to have a kind of long-term wow factor built in.. in the future once many now younger people are older, they may find it and understand it also, like her other offerings, a kind of treasure. There are many more unreleased tracks and I hope it’s possible to release those also, including some which nearly ended up on this album.

    As you do, I wish she could have been more widely known also. A musical artist was all she could have been. Absolutely agree with you about her “real” delivery. Mostly, the songs came to her fully unpacked and already assembled on delivery – it was up to everyone else to “get it”. One minute there is no song, the next there is a finished song and it can only be one way. Margot would be able to hear a few bars of a new piece of music, close her eyes, contemplate a while and tell you to turn off the sound.. she’d click her fingers and she’d just sing – and it would be just perfect. (I don’t want to think about how many songs never were recorded because she would ‘give birth’ to them at the wrong time or place or the recording gear was not at hand.. she had hand-held voice recorders but even planned conveniences were rarely readied in time). More than a few times, Margot listened, over the phone, through a piece I had recorded and insisted I record her – not only were these in pitch, but when I later laid them over the music they were perfectly in-synch. She got the timing, intent, feel, everything. She then went on to talk about other things as if that was just an incidental moment.. and it was I suppose, to her. These gems struck like lightning. Great words, emotional, authentic, timing. Genius.. and I think I am not alone in wishing we could have worked together more and finished more recordings. Margot was not one to use an eraser or write anything down or over-work it. Mostly, what you hear is raw and real and somehow amazing for those reasons alone.

    Big cheers to you Frank and the fantastic Ottawan/Canadian music scene and many thanks to you for keeping her flame alight there! And to David Duchow for so beautifully painting with moving light, added meaning, depth and emotion across the sound-waves sung by Margot! Thank you both.

  • David Duchow says:

    I believe it’s you seeing what you want to see. Margot’s not in the video visually, as far as I know. But if you see her, that’s even better. I am not only a master of obfuscation, but, it appears, I have a PhD!!! haha. And I didn’t even know it.
    By all means embed it. I’d be honoured.

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Margot Smith's 3rd CD available now via her website.

Price $25 Australian dollars per CD - no extra shipping/handling worldwide. Proceeds from the sale of this CD go to Margot's family.


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