Swamp Dogg

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Swamp Dogg
Swamp Dogg!!.jpg
Background information
Birth name Jerry Williams, Jr.
Born (1942-07-12)July 12, 1942
Origin Portsmouth, Virginia, USA
Genres Soul
Occupations Singer-songwriter
Instruments Vocals, Guitar, Piano
Years active Since 1954
Labels Alive Naturalsound Records
Website Official website

Jerry Williams, Jr. (born 12 July 1942) is an American soul music artist who is better known by his pseudonym Swamp Dogg.

Biography and career[edit]

In 1970 he took on the persona of "Swamp Dogg" and released his first LP record, Total Destruction to Your Mind, which was reissued on March 5, 2013 by Alive Naturalsound Records.[1] The cover of his 1971 album, Rat On!, featuring Williams on the back of an oversized white rat, was ranked as one of the worst album covers of all time.[2]

Williams is also a noted songwriter and record producer. In an interview on NPR's Studio 360, Williams stated he was raised on country music: "Black music didn't start 'til 10 at night until 4 in the morning and I was in bed by then.. . . If you strip my tracks, take away all the horns and guitar licks, what you have is a country song."[3]

Swamp Dogg has been a musical cult figure since the 70's. He combined classic soul with social themes. In the 70s, artists such as Curtis Mayfield, Marvin Gaye and Stevie Wonder did the same. But Swamp Dogg's lyric's have an outrageous honesty that never made it to the mainstream.

Cited as a major influence by contemporary artists such as Jack White and the Black Keys, Swamp Dogg's musical hooks, natural rhythms and social commentary sound as fresh now as when they were cut.

Swamp Dogg started his professional life as Little Jerry Williams, a solid soul shouter. The transformation from Little Jerry to Swamp Dogg was sudden...Swamp Dogg was born, rather than transitioned.

He produced himself and recorded himself and marketed himself. His style was naturalistic and original, but because some of his titles, lyrics and cover art were so outrageous, he was branded as a novelty act by some.

Others see him as the soul icon he is. Swamp Dogg was the first artist to use the word "Dogg" and is a true American Original


  1. ^ Marchese, David (5 March 2013). "Tha Real Mother****ing Doggfather". Spin. Retrieved 5 December 2013. 
  2. ^ Nick DiFonzo (2004). The WORST album covers in the world...EVER!. London: New Holland Publishers. p. 76. 
  3. ^ Jerry Williams, Jr., interview with Kurt Anderson Studio 360, Natl. Public Radio, WYPR, Baltimore 9 May 2009

External links[edit]