RIP: Sam Farkas, 1953-2010

Sam Farkas

One of Nippertown’s finest guitarists and a truly sweet guy, Sam Farkas passed away unexpectedly on Saturday, June 12 at the age of 56. He was a versatile musician – comfortable and excelling in quite a number of different musical genres.

In addition to performing as a solo guitarist, Farkas could also often be found playing with such bands as the Jazz Machine (who were slated to play at Jazz on Jay later this month), the Mike Wicks Quartet and Nitro Jive.

Farkas was also an enthusiastic and inspiring music teacher, a longtime jazz radio disc jockey and the owner of Adirondack Strings music store in Albany for more than 30 years.

Funeral services will be held at Congregation Gates of Heaven at 852 Ashmore Avenue, Schenectady at 1pm today (Monday), followed by burial at Gates of Heaven Cemetery in Schenectady.

In lieu of flowers, the family has asked that donations may be made to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, Upstate New York/Vermont Chapter, 5 Computer Drive West, Suite 100, Albany, NY, 12205.

Read Farkas’ obituary in The Times Union.

(Photo of Sam Farkas by Andrzej Pilarczyk)

  1. Mike Hotter says

    That’s sad, so young – I bought one of my favorite amps @ his store about 10 years ago, a Fender VibroChamp – I wish I held on to it, can’t find another with the same grit and bite.

  2. Roger Green says

    I worked with Sam 32 years ago – Schenectady Arts Council. Great guy.

  3. Graceful J says

    Deepest sympathies to his family, esp., his children; how sad to be gone at a relatively young age like that. He was a real nice guy; I met him about a month ago or so when I stopped in Adirondack Strings and bought my son a ukulele (his “guitar”).

  4. michael eck says

    Sam was my first guitar teacher. My first lesson (Oct. ’79) was a half-hour on how to hold the pick. It let me know that the little things are important. We’ll miss you Sam.

  5. Jim Sande says

    Rest in peace Sam.

  6. Bruce Tannenbaum says

    I knew Sam from our days at WRPI in the ’70s. We had similar musical tastes, which generally meant almost everything was fair game for our Capital District audiences! We always had long chats about music; often one of us would preview an album and the other would play the previewer’s recommendation on the air! To me, that was the greatest compliment one could give to or get from a peer.
    Years later I visited Saratoga Springs and walked into a music store. Unexpectedly, I received a greeting from the person behind the counter – it was Sam! We had a great time talking about our lives in the years since we had last seen each other!
    Sam was a great soul; I will miss him!

    My condolences to his family.

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