Carol Williams (disco musician)

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Carol Williams
Origin Montclair, New Jersey, United States
Genres Disco
Dance-pop
Occupations Background singer, singer, songwriter
Instruments Vocals
Years active 1975–present
Labels Salsoul Records ('70s)
Vanguard ('80s)
New Image Records (late '80s)
Associated acts The Geminis, Tony Valor, Vincent Montana, Jr., Salsoul Orchestra, Komiko, Darryl Payne

Carol Williams, born in Montclair, New Jersey, United States, is a vocalist and songwriter[1] who achieved success with her disco songs in the 1970s. She was the first female artist signed to the disco label Salsoul Records.

Carol Williams was once a member of the post-disco/garage house studio project called Komiko.[2]

Career[edit]

She worked with producer Vincent Montana, Jr. and the Salsoul Orchestra. Her most notable recording, "More", was very popular at a time when disco was just breaking into the mainstream and is widely seen as an early disco classic. More was the first 12 inch commercial single that one could buy in stores all over the world. It peaked at #4 on the Hot Dance Club Play chart in 1976. The success of "'More" led to the 'Lectric Lady album, released in 1977 and featuring the hits "Come Back" and the club classic "Love is You". This was sampled in 1999 by Italian DJ Spiller in an instrumental track called "Groove Jet", on the "Mighty Miami EP", and in 2000 in the vocal version of the track, called "Groovejet (If This Ain't Love)" with vocals performed by Sophie Ellis-Bextor. The track featuring Ellis-Bextor reached number 1 in the UK and AUS Pop charts and sparked renewed demand for the original. Carol's success at Salsoul put her in demand as a major disco act traveling the world performing at all the major disco clubs like Studio 54 and Odyssey 2001 and etc. She did a lot of TV specials like the legendary performance at Roseland with the Salsoul Orchestra, which was on television in 1977 promoting an album compilation called Salsoul Disco Boogie.

Not long after the release of her album, Williams parted company with Salsoul. In 1978 she signed with Canadian label Roy B. Quality Records where she recorded a duet with singer producer Tony Valor "Love Has Come My Way." It got a lot of club play, which led to her 1979 album Reflections Of with disco classics "Tell The World" and "Dance the Night Away". Carol toured the world with these classics, performing with other stars like The Trammps, Thelma Houston, the Village People, Tom Jones and James Brown.

1980s to present[edit]

She turned down Darryl Payne's song "Over Like a Fat Rat" and passed it to Fonda Rae because she wasn't fond of the concept of a song that is "about a rat," defending her position, "Anything I am singing has to make sense to me and tell a story."[1] Rae's version which turned into a minor club hit was appraised by Williams, "[and] she did a fantastic job. The way they arranged it—it was amazing."[1]

In 1982 she had a R&B hit "Can't Get Away From Your Love" on Vanguard label which did well for her on the R&B dance charts. "You've Reached the Bottom Line" in 1983, "What's The Deal" in 1987, and "Queen of Hearts" in 1989 all kept her on the charts. Her hits played an important part in the disco club scene. DJs typically kept Carol's records available as people would eventually request her songs.

Carol Williams is still performing, doing shows on disco flashback concerts and she travels with her live band. Her songs are available on various Salsoul and Unidisc compilations.

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

Singles[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Aerna, James (2013). First Ladies of Disco: 32 Stars Discuss the Era and Their Singing Careers. Penguin. pp. 186–87. ISBN 1476603324. 
  2. ^ Carol Williams - The Biography - on Allmusic. Retrieved 2011-07-25