Shirley Smith is a Detroit native who studied under the tutelage of one of Detroit’s premier harpists and vocal instructors, Patricia Terry-Ross, who was her teacher at Detroit’s Cass Technical High School. Shirley studied voice, piano, and harp under Mrs. Ross. She also studied voice with Professor Dennis J. Tini at Wayne State University. Shirley’s passion for music shows in her interaction with her students. She teaches piano from beginner to intermediate here at the studio. She is also a phenomenal vocal coach and loves to work with children as well as adults who aspire to enhance their vocal ability. She was the original music director/vocal coach for the gospel stage play Detroit’s own, Perilous Times, produced by TJ Hemphill. She has traveled extensively nationally and abroad to Melbourne, Australia and Jamaica to coach vocals in the Gospel genre. She was also the original Minister of Music for Bishop William H. Murphy, III and The Dream Center Church, Atlanta, GA.
She is formerly the Minister of Music at The Potter’s House International Ministries in Jacksonville, FL, where the pastor, Bishop Vaughn McLaughlin, was proud to oversee her musical gift for 17 years. Several of her students have gone on to achieve great success musically such as international gospel recording artist Lisa McClendon and also Jamison Ross who was the winner of the 2012 Thelonious Monk Competition for Drummers. Her company, Journey Music Studios, LLC, is one of Metro Detroit’s premier places for music lessons.