Elliott Smith (August 6, 1969 – October 21, 2003) was an American singer-songwriter and musician. He was born Steven Paul Smith on August 6, 1969 in Omaha, Nebraska. His mother, Bunny Smith, was an elementary school teacher and his father, Gary Smith, was a University of Nebraska
medical student at the time. His parents divorced about a year later, and Steven went to live near Dallas, Texas, with his mother and stepfather. Smith learned to play both the piano and guitar as a child and wrote his first song when he was 13. At 14, Smith moved from Texas to Portland, Oregon, to live with his father, Gary. During high school, Smith was part of the band Stranger Than Fiction (with Garrick Duckler, Jason Hornick, and Adam Koval). He graduated from Lincoln High School on June 3, 1987 as a National Merit
Around this time, he began calling himself “Elliott”, since he thought “Steve” sounded too much like a jock name. No one is certain why he chose “Elliott.” Some speculate it came from a street name in Portland, some say it was a...