Williams performing in 2008
|Birth name||Charles Anthony Williams|
April 17, 1942 |
Camden, New Jersey, United States
|Genres||Mainstream jazz, hard bop, post bop, jazz fusion|
|Occupations||Bassist, composer, bandleader|
Williams has gained prestige among jazz musicians as a solid supportive player. Since the early 1960s, he has made subtle swing, a precise rhythm and superb technique the landmark of his playing. He started his professional career in Philadelphia with Jimmy Heath, then played and recorded with the Gene Ammons/Sonny Stitt quintet (1960–61). After that, he played in Los Angeles for the vocalists Betty Carter, Sarah Vaughan and Nancy Wilson (until the late 1960s), recording with Vaughan and Wilson, and also with The Jazz Crusaders and the Bobby Hutcherson/Harold Land quintet while working with Miles Davis.
In 1969, Williams moved to New York City and joined the Herbie Hancock Mwandishi Sextet for the next three years, doubling in acoustic and electric basses, and also worked with Mary Lou Williams (1973–75) and Ron Carter's quartet (1977–78). Since the 1980s, Williams has appeared as a sideman in a significative number of session records with notable jazz instrumentalists and vocalists, although opportunities to lead his own sessions are rare.
Williams also has collaborated with Chet Baker, Kenny Barron, Sathima Bea Benjamin, Larry Coryell, Stanley Cowell, Gil Evans, Frank Foster, Dexter Gordon, Joe Farrell, Shirley Horn, Illinois Jacquet, Rahsaan Roland Kirk, Harold Mabern, Branford Marsalis, Carmen McRae, Frank Morgan, Hilton Ruiz, Woody Shaw, Steve Turre, McCoy Tyner, and the Mel Lewis Jazz Orchestra.
In 2008, Williams began releasing a series of live albums exclusively for download through his company, Buster Williams Productions. Live Volume 1 was released in June 2008.
- Pinnacle (1975)
- Crystal Reflections (1976)
- Tokudo (1978)
- Heartbeat (1978)
- Dreams Come True (1978)
- Something More (1989)
- Lost in a Memory (1999)
- Houdini (2001)
- Griot Liberte (2004)
- Live Volume 1 (2008)
With Gene Ammons
- Dig Him! (Argo, 1961) - with Sonny Stitt also released as We'll Be Together Again (Prestige)
- Boss Tenors (Verve, 1961) - with Sonny Stitt
- The Boss Is Back! (Prestige, 1969)
- Brother Jug! (Prestige, 1969)
With Walter Bishop, Jr.
- Illumination (1977)
With Chico Freeman
- Peaceful Heart, Gentle Spirit (Contemporary, 1980)
With Dexter Gordon
- The Tower of Power! (Prestige, 1969)
- More Power! (Prestige, 1969)
- Tangerine (Prestige, 1972)
- Generation (Prestige, 1972)
With Herbie Hancock
- The Prisoner (Blue Note, 1969)
- Fat Albert Rotunda (Warner Bros., 1969)
- Mwandishi (Warner Bros., 1969)
- Sextant (Columbia, 1973)
- VSOP (Columbia, 1977)
With the Jazztet
- Voices All (1982)
With Eric Kloss
- Essence (Muse, 1974)
With Harold Mabern
With Woody Shaw
- Compact Jazz: Sarah Vaughan (1957)
- Way Back Home - The Crusaders (1961)
- Miles Davis Quintet (1965)
- Jazz Profile - McCoy Tyner (1967)
- Lush Life - Nancy Wilson (1968)
- Easy - Grant Green (1978)
- Another Story - Stanley Turrentine (1969)
- Art of the Ballad - Dexter Gordon (1969)
- Frank Foster - Frank Foster (1969)
- McPherson's Mood - Charles McPherson (Prestige, 1969)
- The Blues; That's Me! - Illinois Jacquet (Prestige, 1969)
- Asante - McCoy Tyner (Blue Note, 1970)
- Ms. Magic - Carmen McRae (1971)
- Outback - Joe Farrell (1971)
- The Essence of Mystery - Alphonse Mouzon (1972)
- Sunburst - Eddie Henderson
- Piano Man - Hilton Ruiz (1975)
- The Return of the 5000 Lb. Man - Rahsaan Roland Kirk (1975)
- The Betty Carter Album - Betty Carter (1976)
- Dune - Sam Morrison (1976)
- Innocence - Kenny Barron (1978)
- Lazy Afternoon - Shirley Horn (1978)
- Ballads for Two - Chet Baker with W. Lackerschmid (1979)
- Renaissance - Branford Marsalis (1986)
- Toku Do - Larry Coryell (1987)
- Bird Songs - Sphere (1988)
- African River - Abdullah Ibrahim (1989)
- Right There - Steve Turre (1991)
- Acoustic Masters I - Charles Lloyd (1994)
- Lunar Eclypse - Gil Evans (2000)
- Pick 'Em/Super Strings - Ron Carter (2001)
- SongSpirit - Sathima Bea Benjamin (2006)
- Yonke, David. "Buster Williams brings New York jazz to Toledo". Toledo Blade, November 16, 1993, p. P-1. Retrieved on June 1, 2013.
- Hentoff, Nat. "Cookin' at the Cookery". The Village Voice, March 21, 1974, p. 47. Retrieved on June 1, 2013.
- Sewell, Rhonda B. "Emergency inspires jazz bassist's new CD". Toledo Blade, September 15, 2004, p. D3. Retrieved on June 1, 2013.
- Pittsburgh Press. "Jazz Pianist Opening Here Monday". October 19, 1974, p. 11. Retrieved on June 1, 2013.
- Palmer, Robert. "Jazz scene is now devoid of bands". Times Daily, January 15, 1984, p. 10E. Retrieved on June 1, 2013.
- Murthi, R.S. "Man with the lyrical horn". New Straits Times, June 17, 1990, p. 18. Retrieved on June 1, 2013.