Chances are, if you live in the Tampa Bay area, you came from somewhere else. Susan Jones Williams not only was born here, she is a fifth-generation Pinellas County native. Her effervescent style, which makes her a favorite voice talent among Spectrio clients, is no act; it is an extension of a naturally sunny yet genuine personality—appropriate for a native of this region. But make no mistake about it, Susan is a born performer, starting in church choir “since probably four or five. As a little girl I had piano lessons, dance lessons, art lessons, eventually added other instruments.” The acting bug hit in her teen years, leading to roles extending into adulthood, including Equity and community theatre.
Susan’s dream was to become a television reporter, graduating from University of Central Florida with a Communications degree, but after sitting in with a band during a holiday party, she was hired upon graduation to sing with the George King Orchestra, a big band specializing in jazz standards and show tunes. She would be a full-time singer with several different bands for 16 years, but not before returning to television—in a very different format that, like her bloodline, was native to Pinellas County; “Home Shopping Network was still local-I had never seen it, and had only heard of it. There was an ad in the paper for a host—I auditioned and bingo, that started seven years there.” Her talent for ad-libbing and interviewing was developed while with HSN, where a host may have only looked over a product before going on, and had to keep talking until the product was sold out or calling ended on it. Her experiences there led to a successful career in infomercials and representing companies as a demonstrator. Susan has also been a volunteer host for Pinellas County Schools’ now-defunct WPDS-TV, interviewing nationally-known authors for the station’s “Booktalk” series.
When performing as a voice talent, as she does for Spectrio and for many other companies, Susan says “If you were to watch me while I record voiceovers, you’d probably laugh. I am quite animated-I just naturally record audio as if it were on camera…hand gestures and all!” She lauds Spectrio’s professionalism and quality, and sees the company as “just good people who I feel truly care about their clients.” She retains her passion for singing and has passed her talent on to her four grown children, who all are involved in music and performance. And, again in keeping with her roots, she has a love for water sports, and realized a lifelong dream last year by becoming a certified scuba diver, to which, in typical Susan Williams fashion, she commented, “Wow! It is the best!”
Listen here, to see why we’ve named Susan Williams this month’s Spectrio Voice of Choice!