Andre Williams – Biography, Songs, Albums, Discography & Facts

Andre Williams
Andre Williams at 2010 Chicago Blues Festival. Image source: Bryan Thompson, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

Andre Williams Biography

Andre Williams, an American R&B and punk blues artist, was born Zephire Andre Williams on November 1, 1936, in Bessemer, Alabama. He began his career at Fortune Records in Detroit in the 1950s.

He became the lead vocalist for The 5 Dollars, who had a contract with Fortune Records, in 1955. “Bacon Fat” and “Jail Bait” were solo efforts, despite the majority of the songs being credited to André Williams and the Don Juans (on Epic in 1956, they were credited to “Andre Mr. Rhythm Williams and his New Group”). In 1957, “Bacon Fat” peaked at number 9 on the Billboard R&B Charts.

The song “Bacon Fat” (written by Williams), which was released as Epic 5-9196 “Bacon Fat/Just because of a Kiss,” was so popular that Fortune Records sold it to Epic Records, a considerably larger distributor. Williams reasoned that since “Bacon Fat” and “Jail Bait” were such commercial successes, “talking instead of singing” was a better option for him because his voice wasn’t as good as some other singers from the 1950s.

He released “Rosa Lee” on Motown’s Miracle Record label in 1960. Williams collaborated on the writing of Stevie Wonder‘s debut song, “Thank You for Loving Me,” in the early 1960s. The Five Du-Tones and Ike & Tina Turner both enjoyed success with Williams’ “Shake a Tail Feather” in 1963. The Williams song “Twine Time” was also a hit for Alvin Cash & the Crawlers.

Williams was signed by Checker, a significant blues label in Chicago, to Chess Records in 1968. He was back, performing “bucket-of-blood” style joints while donning lavender velvet outfits. “Humpin’ Bumpin’ and Thumpin'” and “Cadillac Jack,” in particular, were two of Chess’ numerous hits for Williams. Following that, he started working with other unheard-of black labels and released songs like “Sweet Little Pussy Cat” and “Rib Tips, Pts. 1 & 2.”

Williams wrote “Pig Snoots,” a novelty tune about a man named Ricky who would “come all the way cross town to grab me some snoots,” in collaboration with the Natural Bridge Bunch. Williams composed some songs for the well-known funk bands Funkadelic and Parliament in the 1970s. (Comedian Redd Foxx then referred to Andre Williams as Mr. Rhythm, his most well-known moniker.) Williams started making cuts for Ike Turner once more.

With 1998’s Silky, he modified his aesthetic. Silky, widely regarded as the “world’s sleaziest album ever,” altered the punk movement and gave rise to Sleaze rock. The effects of Silky’s “noise-spattered, stripped-down, roots-punk attack are flat-out insane,” according to Mark Deming. Williams was revered by sleaze rockers, but most critics liked his original sound.

He started working with Bloodshot Records in 1999 by collaborating with The Sadies to record the country album Red Dirt.

The Black Godfather by Andre Williams was published in 2000. The Dirtbombs backed two tracks, bringing back the raucous, energetic, fuzzy sound. Andre had already returned to the stage at the “bucket-of-blood” clubs at this point. Along with the outmoded “Mr. Rhythm,” he adopted the moniker “The Black Godfather.” With the release of Aphrodisiac in 2006, soul music made a comeback. Mark Deming characterized the album as having a “more relaxed and funky groove that’s soulful but potent at the same time, blending ’70s blaxploitation sounds, Jimmy Smith-style jazz figures, and Booker T.-influenced R&B workouts into one great package.”

Williams continues to perform live in the USA. In 2001, 2005, and 2006, he toured Europe with the Dutch band Green Hornet (with the Marshall Brothers). He had a brief European tour that ended in Switzerland from August to November 2006. Afterward, a European tour with The Flash Express began in early 2008.

With the New Orleans-based band Morning 40 Federation, Andre completed recording his most recent CD in 2007. Andre Williams & the New Orleans Hellhounds are listed as the authors of the 2008 Bloodshot Records album Can You Deal With It.

For the compilation LP Daddy Rockin Strong: A Tribute to Nolan Strong & The Diablos in 2010, Williams provided a cover of “The Way You Dog Me Around.”The CD is a remembrance of the late Nolan Strong, who was a Fortune Records sensation in the 1950s and the first half of the 1960s.

Andre Williams Discography

I Wanna Go Back to Detroit CityApple
Night & Day SpotifyAppleYouTube
Hoods and ShadesAppleYouTube
Aphrodisiac AppleYouTube
Bait and Switch
Red DirtSpotifyAppleYouTube
Directly from the StreetsAppleYouTube

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Frequently Asked Questions

What Is Genre Of Andre Williams?

Andre Williams is a rapper, singer, and songwriter from Detroit, Michigan. He is best known for his work with the group Bizarre Ride II the Pharcyde and for his solo album, I Wanna Be Your Man (1992). His music has been described as a mix of “old-school rap, R&B, and blues.

How Many Album Of Andre Williams Had Released?

The answer is eleven. Andre Williams has released eleven albums over the course of his career. These include: I Wanna Go Back to Detroit City (1964), Mr. Rhythm (1965), Silky (1966), Can You Dig It? (1967), Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song (1971), Hoodlum (1971), Life (1972), I Feel Good (1973), Snatch and Grab It (1977), Andre Williams and the New Orleans Hellhounds (1979), and Silky Soul (1980). He has also released several compilations and live albums.

Which Song Of Andre Williams Is The Most Famous?

The most famous song of Andre Williams is “Bacon Fat”.

What Is The Most Selling Album Of Andre Williams?

The most selling album of Andre Williams is “Bacon Fat”. It was released in 1956 and reached number one on the Billboard R&B chart. The album was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America.

Most Searched For Andre Williams Songs

Bacon FatSpotifyAppleYouTube
Only Black Man In South DakotaSpotifyApple
The Monkey Speak His MindSpotify
Car With The StarSpotifyAppleYouTube
Pussy StankSpotifyAppleYouTube