Longtime FSM readers will remember fondly the "Collector’s Corner" columns written by Dr. Robert L. Smith of Decatur, IL, and the CD Price Guides that he authored and we published. (Copies of the 2nd and final edition are still available.)
I am sad to report that Bob passed away in May 2009; this from his wife Kathy who emailed me. I don't have many details, and am not going to trouble Kathy at this sad time, but I believe it was from complications from a brain tumor that Bob first had several years ago.
Bob was a great ally and asset in the early years of Film Score Monthly in 1990s; he was a hugely knowledgeable collector of vinyl and CDs and gave me great encouragement. I always looked forward to his "Collector's Corner" arriving in the mail as I learned so much from his writing about rare soundtracks and what it was like to collect them. (He and Kathy visited me once during the summer on Martha's Vineyard.)
Later, Bob wanted to Jerry Osborne one better by making a thorough and fair CD price guide and we published two editions. He was great to work with both creatively and business-wise and I like to think we even made him some money. We never got around to a third edition—by that time the Internet was making price guides on paper obsolete—but the second was quite an accomplishment.
Bob was special in that he was a passionate collector but also a devoted listener who truly loved film music...his email address began with "fortsolitude" (he loved the Superman score) and I remember his great enthusiasm for the Golden and Silver Age masters like Rózsa, North, Williams and the rest. Collecting soundtracks was a hobby—he was a family doctor by trade—and he pursued it with great enthusiasm, devotion and valor as he aimed to share his knowledge and finds with the rest of us.
I really can't say enough for his contributions to our hobby and how much I enjoyed working with him, and I'm sorry to bring this bad news. I hope people can share their memories in the "comments" of this article.