Charles D. Williams, is a native of Kansas City, Kansas. Mr.Williams has played piano for over 40 years. As a trombonist, 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. Mr. Williams also had the pleasure of participating in the Turner House Jazz series in the 70’s – having opportunity to play with such great jazz artist as: Dizzy Gillespie, Max Roach, Roy Ayers, Cannonball and Nat Adderley, Frank Wess, Clark Terry, Ernie Wilkins, Rich Matteson, and many more.
Today, Mr. Williams performs as the pianist for The Kansas City Jazz Orchestra (Clint Ashlock, director). This orchestra has backed many artist such as, The New Your Voices, Wycliffe Gordon, Ernie Andrews, Houston Person, Harold Jones, The Four Freshmen, Randy Brecker, Bobby Watson, Deborah Brown, Kevin Mahogony, and many more. www.kcjazzorchestra.org …. Mr Williams also plays for THE Louis Neal Orchestra (Louis Neal director), Charles has just launched his newest group “GENRE”. This group consist of four guys playing smooth jazz, funk, also we perform as a MOTOWN REVUE BAND, and many more genres. Musicians in the group are, Larry Thomas (guitar), Justin McCoy (drums), and Blair Bryant on (bass).
Mr. Williams has accompanied many legendary local Kansas City jazz artist such as: Ida McBeth, Angela Hagenbach, The McFadden Brothers, Dr. Wayne Goins (Jazz Director at KSU), and many more. He toured in Brazil in 1998, where he accompanied jazz singer Queen Bey and the internationally acclaimed jazz saxophonist, Arthur Blythe.
As a Gospel Artist and Minister of Music for several local churches in the greater Kansas City area, his work over the years includes serving as Musical Director for the gospel group, “Blessed Through Christ” under the leadership of Mr. Randall Fears. This group had an opportunity to appear on The Bobby Jones Gospel Hour in 2008 in Fort Lauderdale, FL. In 2003 at the Women of Worship GMWA Choir of Tampa, Florida, Mr. Williams was chosen to feature one of his original composition works titled: “JESUS, WE GIVE YOU THE PRAISE” at The 36th Annual National Convention of the Gospel Music Workshop of America, Inc.
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. He also produces, makes custom soundtracks, work with vocalist, and mentors young musicians.
“I believe in sharing my gift with others so that it will be passed on with the hope that they would do the same thing.” ~ Charles D. Williams