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Old 08-23-2014, 08:03 PM   #9 (permalink)
Lord Larehip
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Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 895

Andre Williams came to Detroit from his native Alabama in the mid-50s, signed with Fortune and landed a gig as lead singer for the 5 Dollars--a band that got its start singing on Gratiot street corners although they were billed under various other names.

In 1955, he had a solo hit, "Bacon Fat" (co-written with Devora Brown), which Fortune sold to Epic for national distribution. The song was a fair success. It would be Fortune’s biggest selling single until Nathaniel Mayer overtook him in 1962 with "Village of Love." Williams was, by far, the most colorful of the Fortune artists and the most versatile. His next single, "Jail Bait," was fairly successful. By 1960, Williams signed with Motown and wrote songs for Stevie Wonder and Ike & Tina Turner. He also supervised the recordings of the Contours and managed the career of Edwin Starr. By 1966, he was recording again releasing a few singles. In the 70s, he wrote songs for Parliament and Funkadelic.

Andre Williams "Bacon Fat" (1956) - YouTube

By the 80s, Williams was strung out on drugs and living in abject poverty to the point where he was seen on the streets of Chicago begging for money. Yet, by 1996, he was back in the saddle with an album called Mr. Rhythm—his stage moniker. The music was good but too outdated for younger fans. So two years later, Williams released Silky which was said to be the sleaziest sleaze rock album ever. This garnered him a new audience. One reviewer pronounced Silky to be “noise-spattered, stripped-down, roots-punk assault, and the results are flat-out nuts.” From personal experience: if you don't have it--GIT IT!!!! Yet, the following year, he released a country album recorded with the Sadies called Red Dirt.

In 2000, Williams released The Black Godfather which became his new stage moniker. The album, recorded with the Dirtbombs, was loud, sleazy, fuzzy, punky and funky all at once. A true gem for those with the stomach for it. Williams converted to Judaism the following year and fell silent until 2006 with the release of Aphrodesiac, a return to soul but with helpings of jazz, early 60s R&B, and 70s blaxploitation movie-type themes. It was praised by critics. His last release was Can You Deal With It recorded with the New Orleans Hellhounds (really called Morning 40 Federation). A true hard-hitting and hard-living rocknroll pioneer, Andre Williams is still alive, still recording and still touring. He is greatly loved in Europe, especially Holland, and tours there frequently. One of his best live numbers is "Pussy Stank But So Do Marijuana"--a real audience-rouser.

The Black Godfather.

Andre Williams - Only Black Man In South Dakota - YouTube
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