Sam Williams is a saxophonist currently residing in Boulder, CO. Experienced in a variety of music styles, Sam performs regularly in jazz venues and concert halls throughout northern Colorado and beyond.
In addition to freelancing as a bandleader and sideman, Sam released his debut jazz album Turn the Moon in 2017. In recent years Sam has recently recorded with a wide range of artists and ensembles, including The Ben Markley Big Band (featuring Terell Stafford), Tom Gershwin Quintet, Emily Takahashi Quintet, The Democracy, Art Lande's Funko Moderno, Colorado Jazz Repertory Orchestra, and Gabriel Mervine.
In 2013 and 2014, Sam was awarded the Saxophone Fellowship at the Aspen Music Festival, where he appeared with various orchestras and chamber ensembles, presented a solo recital, and performed several U.S. and world premieres. Sam continues to perform annually at the Aspen Music Festival as a first-call chamber and orchestral saxophonist.
Sam is the baritone saxophonist in the Hemispheres Saxophone Quartet, a chamber ensemble well-versed in both jazz and classical repertoire. In 2015 and 2017, Hemispheres traveled throughout China as cultural ambassadors of the U.S. State Department, with performances and masterclasses in concert halls and conservatories in Beijing, Tianjin, Wuhan, and Changsha.
In addition to his work with the Hemispheres Quartet, recent classical performances include engagements with the Colorado Symphony Orchestra, Dallas Symphony, Philadelphia Orchestra, and the Aspen Opera Center.
Sam earned Master of Music degrees in saxophone performance and jazz studies from the University of Northern Colorado in 2011, where he studied with Dr. Andrew Dahlke. During his studies, Sam was the recipient of numerous awards and honors; in addition to winning the Angie Southard Competition twice, Sam was a member of multiple Downbeat Award-winning jazz ensembles. Sam was also the Teaching Assistant for the saxophone studio, and served as Dr. Dahlke's sabbatical replacement in 2011.
Upon graduation from the University of Northern Colorado, Sam worked briefly as a performer and music director on several cruise ships. Sam relocated to Boulder in 2013 and now happily considers it home. In addition to teaching private saxophone lessons, Sam also serves as an affiliate faculty member at Metropolitan State University in Denver.
Sam roasts his own coffee and enjoys the Colorado outdoors.