CD Release Party: Charles Williams & Genre
Charles Williams is a native of Kansas City, Kansas. Mr. Williams has played piano for over 40 years. He studied under Mr. Leon Brady at Sumner High School and supplemented this training with musical studies under the tutelage of the late Mr. Reginald Buckner.Mr. Williams was a member of the award-winning Sumner Jazz Band that also attended the Paris International Jazz festival in Paris France in 1972, and was auspiciously judged to be “the best High School Band in the World.”
As a pianist, Charles Williams has accompanied many legendary artists such as Sonny Kenner, Claude “Fiddler” Williams, Queen Bey, Angela Hagenbach, Sharon Thompson, The McFadden Brothers, Bobby Watson, Dr. Wayne Goins (Jazz Director at KSU), Richard Ross, and more. He toured in Brazil in 1998, where he accompanied jazz singer Queen Bey and the internationally acclaimed jazz saxophonist, Arthur Blythe; served as the accompanist musician for the KC Boys Choir from 1997-2000; and, was a featured artist for the 2004 and 2005 Swing Series Concert seasons at the Manhattan Arts Center in Manhattan KS. Recently, he was featured at Kansas City’s Rhythm and Ribs Jazz Festival in 2006.
Today, Mr. Williams performs with his own ensembles; while also serving as the pianist for both, the Louis Neal Orchestra (Louis Neal, director) and The Kansas City Jazz Orchestra (Jim Mair, director); and, he also performs regularly as keyboardist with the widely renowned singer Ida McBeth. In the supplemental areas of music education, community service, and artistic outreach, Mr. Williams has established a Keyboard Academy where he teaches students to play keyboard during various weekly music instruction programs.