Michael White (violinist)

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Michael Walter White (24 May 1930 – 6 December 2016) was an American jazz violinist.[1][2]

White was born in Houston, Texas, and grew up in Oakland, California, taking up the violin when he was six years old. His initial career break occurred in 1965, when he played with the John Handy Quintet at the Monterey Jazz Festival, and subsequently recorded three albums with Handy. White was among the first to play the violin in avant-garde jazz, and in the late 1960s became one of the first jazz violinists to play jazz rock fusion (with his band The Fourth Way). He has played with musicians such as Sun Ra, Prince Lasha, McCoy Tyner, Eric Dolphy, Wes Montgomery, Kenny Dorham, Joe Henderson, and Richard Davis. In early 2007, The Michael White Quintet's "Mechanical Man" won in The 6th Annual Independent Music Awards for Best Jazz Song.[3]

White eventually settled in Los Angeles, California. After a long period of obscurity, in the mid 1990s he was involved in a reunion of the Handy Quintet, and recorded an album as co-leader with Bill Frisell, Motion Pictures (1997). In 2006 White released the album Voices.

He died on December 6, 2016.


As leader[edit]

As sideman[edit]

With John Handy

With The Fourth Way

With Sonny Simmons

With The Dead Science

With Pharoah Sanders

With Alice Coltrane

With McCoy Tyner

With Joe Henderson


  1. ^ "SFJazz sets tribute for beloved Oakland sax man". The Mercury News. 10 January 2017.
  2. ^ "Egon on Instagram: "RIP to a jazz great - violinist, composer and arranger Michael White. Carlos Nino had mentioned he was ill but I was hoping for him to…"". Instagram. Retrieved 15 July 2018.
  3. ^ Independent Music Awards - 6th Annual Winners Archived 2009-05-01 at the Wayback Machine

External links[edit]