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Mentor Williams is an American songwriter and producer. He is best known for writing "Drift Away", a middle-of-the-road playlist classic performed by Dobie Gray in 1973. He is the brother of songwriter Paul Williams.
He has received an award from ASCAP for his 30 years of songwriting, and has earned 17 writer awards.
Williams maintained an office at Almo-Irving, in Los Angeles, as staff writer in the late 1960s. He produced for A&M, MCA, RSO and CBS Records, commuting between Los Angeles, Nashville, and London. He worked at The Record Plant with Paul McCartney and Kenney Jones and at Apple Studios in London with Stealers Wheel and Gerry Rafferty. He produced Kim Carnes, John Stewart, Paul Williams (Mentor's brother), and Dobie Gray, among others. Mentor was a post-production, re-mix engineer for The Muppet Movie, which won a Grammy Award and an Academy Award. He also worked on the Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid soundtrack.
Williams built a home overlooking Taos, New Mexico, which he shares with his long-time partner, country music singer Lynn Anderson. He holds numerous songwriting seminars and lectures at the college level, in an attempt to help up-and-coming writers learn the craft of putting words and music together. He finds inspiration for his music in the beauty of the New Mexico mountains, riding horses, and from his brothers, Paul Williams, Songwriter's Hall of Fame inductee, and the late John Williams, a former NASA employee.
- (4 December 2009). Lynn Anderson hit Colusa Casino Resort stage next week, Colusa County Sun Herald ("Also performing will be Anderson's long-time partner Mentor Williams, who wrote the hit 'Drift Away.'")