Jazz Pianist James Williams grew up in Memphis where he was steeped in gospel and blues. Those sounds still resonate in his playing. He taught piano at the Berklee School of Music in Boston during which time he had the opportunity to play with such notables as Allan Dawson, Dizzy Gillespie, and a host of others. He became recognized as well for his jazz compositions, such as Alter Ego, WillPower and others. In addition to composing, James Williams is a much-sought-after arranger and accompanist. It was from his position at Berklee that he was asked to join Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers playing with with many of Blakee's protoges including Charles Fambrough, Billy Pierce, Wynton Marsalis, Branford Marsalis, and Bobby Watson, to name a few. Following his stint with Art Blakey, Williams became a favorite sideman for such jazz giants as Dizzy Gillespie, Milt Hinton, Milt Jackson, Joe Lovano, Ron Carter and many of the jazz greats that can be heard will Williams on this CD: Christian McBride, Etta Jones, Steve Wilson, Ron Carter, Russell Malone, Joe Lovano, Steve Nelson, Freddy Cole, Billy Pierce, and John Patitucci.