Dale Hibbert (born 16 December 1961), is a musician from Manchester, England. He is best known as the original bassist for The Smiths.

Career[edit | edit source]

Freak Party[edit | edit source]

Hibbert was the recording engineer for funk band Freak Party's only demo tape "Crak Therapy". The members of Freak Party (Johnny Marr, Andy Rourke and Simon Wolstencroft) would later form The Smiths.

The Smiths[edit | edit source]

After forming their songwriting partnership and deciding they wanted to build a band around it, Morrissey and Marr set to work auditioning prospective band members. They recruited Hibbert on bass and drummer Simon Wolstencroft (who would later leave the band and be replaced by Mike Joyce). Hibbert had the additional advantage of being a recording engineer in local recording studio Decibelle and was thus able to provide after-hours recording time for the band's tracks. Hibbert had previously recorded a demo for Marr and Rourke's earlier funk band Freak Party.

Neither Hibbert's personality nor his style of bass sat very well with the other band members, however, and he was replaced after the band's debut gig by an old acquaintance of Marr's, Andy Rourke. By second drummer Mike Joyce's account, he was fired for his ineptitude in playing the bass. He has formally denied the long-circulated story that he only became aware of his dismissal after arriving at a session to find Rourke setting up his gear, stating that he was fired by Marr prior to Rourke's appointment.

Hibbert is believed to have left the music industry, opening and running a bar in Manchester before migrating to Australia, then coming back to England, where he reportedly planned to reopen a bar in Manchester. He now runs a small vegetarian coffee bar in Todmorden (near Hebden Bridge) called Kava with his Ukrainian wife Svet.

External links[edit | edit source]

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