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American jazz violinist, songwriter and author Nora Germain has been playing the violin for over 20 years and performing professionally for the last decade. She studied at Idyllwild Arts Academy, The New School for Jazz in New York City, and University of Southern California's Thornton School of Music. She currently lives in Los Angeles and performs regularly both in the United States and Europe as a singer and violinist. She has also performed and recorded with many of the world's greatest musical talents including Jon Batiste and Stay Human, Postmodern Jukebox (in videos with more than 5 million views), Sam Smith, Lewis Capaldi, Tommy Emmanuel CGP, John Altman, Jacob Collier, Martin Taylor MBE, JMSN, Jeff Goldblum, Dee Dee Bridgewater and many others. In addition to being featured on over 100 recordings, she has also released eight of her own jazz albums as well as two inspirational books among other writings. For three years she performed as a volunteer at Children's Hospital Los Angeles and was also invited by renowned author Eckhart Tolle to perform at The Eckhart Tolle Foundation in 2016. She has also appeared twice on The Late Late Show with James Corden accompanying other artists. A musician of many facets who is only at the beginning of her career, Nora has been called the best jazz violinist in the world. The sky is clearly not the limit for this powerful and multidimensional visionary.
1/4 Catalan, 3/4 American violinist Nora Francesca Germain is an author, singer, jazz musician, bandleader and recording artist. She was the first ever violinist to graduate with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Jazz Studies from the renowned USC Thornton School of Music. An alumna of Idyllwild Arts Academy, the renowned boarding arts high school in southern California, Germain was given the "Inspirational Jazz Student" Award at age17 by her mentor and longtime colleague Marshall Hawkins, former bassist for Miles Davis and Shirley Horn. She was also the first jazz violin graduate of Idyllwild Arts Academy. Now often called an old soul, bright star or inspirational friend, Germain has performed alongside an incredibly wide range of musicians from around the world and continues to surprise her fans on a daily basis with her wit, work ethic and musical ideas.
Nora was introduced to music by her violinist parents and cellist grandmother who were all members of the Madison Symphony. Her maternal grandmother was also a musician, a pianist and singer from Barcelona, Spain. Both of Nora’s grandfathers are veterans of World War II. One of them, Cliff Germain, notably founded the State Natural Areas Program in Wisconsin. After her work in the symphony, Nora’s mother became a violin teacher and co-founded the Suzuki Strings of Madison classical violin school in the early 1990s which Nora attended as a child. Her father became a violin luthier. At age 10, Nora was already performing and improvising with professional bands and venturing outside of her classical training. During the 1990s and early 2000s, she performed year-round schedules of violin showcases and concerts with Suzuki Strings of Madison and often participated in violin masterclasses led by among others, renowned violinists Mark O'Connor and Hilary Hahn.
In later years, she performed at the 2014 MTV Video Music Awards with Sam Smith, and was in the same year a featured soloist with Marshall Hawkins' Seahawk Modern Jazz Orchestra. While studying at USC, she accompanied artists including Kristin Chenoweth, Glenn Frey of The Eagles, Barry Manilow and Arturo Sandoval and has since performed with Jon Batiste and Stay Human, Jacob Collier, Evan Christopher, Casey Abrams, Dee Dee Bridgewater and John Altman. She has also appeared alongside several of the world's greatest guitar players including Martin Taylor MBE, John Etheridge (both former guitarists with Stephane Grappelli), Tommy Emmanuel CGP, and others.
She has also recorded as a soloist with a number of singers and solo artists including Sandi Thom and Alan Paul of The Manhattan Transfer. She has been featured as a guest and co-host on Scott Cowie's Talk Music Podcast as well as ICMP's The Musical Life podcast and The Creative Life podcast with James Taylor. In 2016 she was asked to perform for the Eckhart Tolle Foundation whose other presenters included Michael Bernard Beckwith, 2020 presidential candidate Marianne Williamson and author Eckhart Tolle. Also in 2016, she started performing in viral music videos with YouTube sensation Postmodern Jukebox and has now been featured in music videos that have more than 5 million views.
Germain has also worked on numerous independent films, TV movies and music videos both on camera and in the recording studio, including projects for The Hallmark Channel, Disney Vacations, Drunk History, Glee, music videos for JMSN and KNOWER, and others. She also produced and released eight of her own jazz albums as well as two inspirational books and has played on over 100 albums and recordings in total. She also appeared on two episodes of The Late Late Show with James Corden, performing with Sampha, Robert Glasper and Kamasi Washington, and Lewis Capaldi.
From 2014-2016 she performed taking requests on a weekly basis for patients and families at Children's Hospital Los Angeles under the Mark Taper-Johnny Mercer Artist Program, and has performed for a number of charities and foundations since that time as well. Germain is an advocate for the arts and the sciences, and often engages in social and political activism. She has studied piano, several types of dance, emergency medicine, oceanography, environmental science, and Spanish, as well. Guitarist Martin Taylor described Germain as having a "very wise head on very young shoulders." It's no wonder that in an often-made comparison between Nora Germain and Stephane Grappelli, All About Jazz once declared, "Jazz violin is alive and well."