Jim Williams


Birth name Jim Williams aka Jimmy Williams

always klick on pic’s.

Memphis, Tennessee, USA

Born / Died Unknown

Jim Williams

 Jim Williams liked to joke, several decades after his time at Sun. ''I always try to live up to a coinage from a number of my friends. That Jim Williams is still the biggest unknown in the music   business''. Even if that were true, not many people could console themselves with the knowledge that they made it as a TWA captain flying the transatlantic route, while at the same time part-owning three recording   studios.

Jim Williams could. Williams also made some pretty decent rock and roll records in his time, recording for Dub, Orbit, Ace and Dot as well as Sun - but a good one. During a year-and-a-half in and out of Sun, he recorded several permutations on his pop flavored rockabilly.     Although only one record came out on Sun, Jimmy Williams recorded several tapes-full of material during a year-long contract from June 1956 to June 1957. He possessed a naturally controlled and clear vocal style   best applied to ballads and mid-paced material and he produced some rich tones on the two rock-ballads Sam   Phillips chose to issue on Sun, ''That Depends On You'' and ''Please Don't Cry Over Me''. Before the record came out, though, in the first half of 1957 Williams had experimented with two other styles with mixed  success. He tried some medium-paced rockers like ''My One Desire'' backed by ably by session players   Roland Janes and Jimmy M. Van Eaton. Before that, in mid-1956, Williams had arrived at Sun with his own   band and recorded seven songs in a totally different and much faster, rocking style. Although some of the   early songs are acceptably good, it is clear throughout that Williams was affecting a breathless, mannered higher-pitched vocal in the way of a dance-band vocalist trying his hand at being Elvis.     In a 1973 letter, he gave a brief rundown on his life to that point. ''Like Elvis, I lived in the same government housing project Lauderdale Courts in Memphis. Since Sun had just hit with Carl Perkins and Johnny Cash, I   went there too, to find fame and fortune. At that time, I had a 16-piece dance-band called The Dixie Landers   and we pretty well had a curb on the market for playing dance and show gigs in the mid-South area. In 1956   I took a nucleus of this dance-band, a drummer, a pianist, bass and guitar man and started my rock group.  What we knew about rock we learned from Elvis and from the movies. Jack Clement and I got together later   on with Sam Phillips to work on ''That Depends On You''. This was not with my own band. We had started to  work with Sun's own musicians. With the record, I toured on Sun shows and got to be real good, lasting   friends with Roy Orbison, Bill Justis and Scotty Moore. But after a while, seeing the way Elvis was received   (clothes torn off and thousands of girls) and the way I was received (rotten eggs, tomatoes and coke bottles) I   decided to join the Air Force as a pilot’'.     Before he went into Air Force training, Williams saw his recording of his own song ''I Belong To You'' issued   on the Dub label of Little Rock (as Jimmy Williams with the Sid Bass Orchestra). He said Johnny Vincent   badgered him to record four songs for Ace Records and Jerry Thomas signed him to Dot. But when he got   out of the Air Force in 1963 he gave up recording altogether to go into studio ownership with Scotty Moore,   Chip Moman and others. Then he went back to flying, as a passenger pilot. He became involved in TWA’s   safety and training teams. In his spare time, Williams continued to write songs and produce recordings from   his Caveman productions in Independence, Missouri. Although he always made light of his abilities, Jim   Williams has 32 songs registered at B.M.I. And he was a fine singer. His music on Sun is not very original   but it is well worth a second listen. It's worth remembering too, if you ever flew with TWA in the 1970s and  1980s, what Jack Clement once told, ''Jim Williams, he was the most nervous feller I ever met''.

This release, Original release, SUN 270 (US) 06/1957

Please don't cry over me   b/w   That depends on you

Please Don’t Cry Over Me - 1957

That Depends On You - 1957


SUN unissued rec. 1956

Sonny Boy - rec. 1956

Fire Engine Red - rec. 1956

Rock A Bye Baby - rec. 1956

Sweet Rockin’ Mama - 1956

SUN unissued rec. 1957

My One Desire - rec. 1957

All I Want Is You - rec. 1957

Good Lookin’ Woman - rec. 1957

More Jim(my) Williams   Si: Dub fj 2842 [1958]

© Stefan Schröder 2017