Samuel "Savoirfaire" Williams is a classically trained professional Jazz Violinist based in Chicago, IL – Williams is known throughout the industry as “Savoirfaire Jazz Violinist”.
At the age of 5 years old as part of a special group of Suzuki Violin child prodigies of Betty Haag. Samuel performed for the first time at Chicago’s Orchestra Hall. This performance was part of a public television broadcast. The recital became an annual event for over 35 years, of which Samuel performed with this group for five years.
Samuel continued to study the violin while attending The Merit Music School participating in various curriculum offerings Music Theory, Youth Orchestras (CYS, CYSO, Protégé, All City, All State) and Private Violin instruction from Joseph Williams in the Traditional Method.
Having exhibited a high level of proficiency on the violin and strong leadership skills Samuel was invited by Conductor Frank Winkler to lead the principal desk for the Viola Section for the City Youth String ensemble at the age of 16. Samuel went on to receive the Merit Music Grant to study Classical Viola with Edward Adelson for a Summer at Interlochen Music Camp.
It was at Interlochen that Samuel sat in with Milt Jackson at a Jazz Workshop and after speaking with Mr. Jackson changed his musical focus to Jazz Violin. After several years of struggling to find his voice in Jazz. Samuel met Wynton Marsalis while working as an Andy Fran at Symphony Center and after performing for him and mentioning his desire to become a Professional Jazz Violinist, Mr. Marsalis instructed him to study with Jazz Violin Legend Johnny Frigo. Mr. Frigo was not interested in Teaching but mentored Samuel in the Jazz Tradition of allowing Samuel to sit in with him at his local performances.
During this period Samuel began Classical Violin study with Violinist and Composer Harold Geller who was a Violin pupil of Ivan Galamian. Samuel continued his Classical training with Richard Ferrin Principal Violist for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. To pay for his lessons Samuel " Busked " on the streets of Chicago and while busking Legendary Jazz Guitar Great Kenny Burrell invited Samuel to work on a professional Bebop performance at the Jazz Showcase with Willie Pickens and Larry Grey.
In the year 2000, Samuel was voted into the Chicago Chapter of the elite jazz organization AACM for exhibiting exemplary musical flexibility leading to Samuel being referred to as Savoirfaire. After releasing three independent Albums of Live recordings, Savoirfaire was discovered by Bob Koester owner of Delmark Records and has received critical acclaim internationally for his album “Running Out of Time"(Delmark 562).
Savoirfaire continues to perform with his group Savoirfaire Jazz Quartet and has been invited to record for numerous albums and International Jazz Festivals worldwide most notably as a session string player for Otis Clay, R Kelly. In 2005 Samuel was personally invited to play an extra role as principal violinist with his quartet "Renascent Strings" in the movie "Proof " (05) with Gwenyth Paltrow and Anthony Hopkins a first in the history of American film making. Savoirfaire continues to trail blaze as a composer, producer, and arranger breaking down industry barriers by integrating contemporary Jazz with other forms of music such as Hip Hop, Rock, and World Music.
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For more about Samuel “Savoirfaire” Williams the Savoirfaire Jazz Violinist, please reference his official article on Wikipedia
Jazz is an African American musical art form based on Chord progressions derived from early 20th century American popular music, specifically the period between 1915–1950 (Wikipedia Jazz Article)
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If this is your first time visiting my site and to learn more about my music. View my interview with Arts and Entertainment.
This is the second portion of a two-part interview and performance. Please visit my channel on YouTube for both parts of the interview and more videos of past performances.