by Russ Musto
The tragedy of pianist/producer James Williams' premature passing in July at the age of 53 is too great and painful too dwell upon at this early juncture, so suffice it to say that the sadness his untimely death has brought to his many, many friends and fans in the jazz community is truly immense. Williams was a prince among men, loved and respected by all who knew and performed with him and this four-volume set of duos with 24 individual ...read more
by Matt Merewitz
Audience rapport is the true key for pianist James Williams. The Memphis-born Jazz Messenger alum has an urbane aura in his voice and his mannerisms that translate to his playing. He is a torch pianist much in the Ellingtonian tradition and fittingly has a special penchant for Strayhorn’s main d’oeuvre.
What strikes me about Williams is not that he knows virtually every song in the jazz, pop, classical, and gospel canons; or his keen sense of melody; or even his ...read more