Webster Lewis

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Webster Lewis
Birth nameWebster Samuel Lewis
Born(1943-09-01)September 1, 1943
Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.
DiedNovember 20, 2002(2002-11-20) (aged 59)
Barryville, New York, U.S.
GenresJazz, disco
Occupation(s)Composer, arranger
Years active1972–2002

Webster Samuel Lewis (September 1, 1943 – November 20, 2002)[1] was an American jazz and disco composer, arranger and keyboardist.

Career[edit]

Lewis was born in 1943 in Baltimore, Maryland.[1] At a young age, his family encouraged him to take up music. Later, he earned a bachelor's degree in sociology from Morgan State University and then completed a master's degree at the New England Conservatory of Music[1] with Gunther Schuller as his mentor. He started out in jazz working with drummer Tony Williams, George Russell, Bill Evans, Stanton Davis, and the Piano Choir.[2] His first release was Live at Club 7, issued in 1972. He signed with Epic Records in 1976 and began releasing disco music, where he found commercial success. He had several charting singles including 1977's "On the Town/Saturday Night Steppin' Out/Do It with Style" (U.S. Club Play #36) and 1980's "Give Me Some Emotion" (U.S. #107, R&B Singles #41).[3]

Lewis worked extensively as a session musician and studio arranger, for Herbie Hancock, Barry White (he also toured with both of them), and others. He also produced for such artists as Gwen McCrae and Michael Wycoff.[1] He later branched into soundtrack work for film and television, including for the films The Hearse (1980),[2] Body and Soul (1981) and My Tutor (1983).

He also taught jazz voice and arrangement classes at Howard University in Washington as a visiting professor from 1995 to 1999.

Lewis died at his home in Barryville, New York, on November 20, 2002, as a result of pneumonia and diabetes.[1]

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

Year Album Chart positions Label
US
[3]
US R&B
[3]
US Jazz
[3]
1972 Live at Club 7 Sonet
1976 On the Town Epic
1978 Touch My Love
1979 8 for the 80's 114 21
1981 Let Me Be the One 49 21
Welcome Aboard
(with the Love Unlimited Orchestra)
Unlimited Gold
"—" denotes releases that did not chart.

With The Piano Choir

Singles[edit]

Year Title Peak chart positions
US Pop
[3]
US R&B
[3]
US Dance
[3]
1977 "Saturday Night Steppin' Out" 1
"On the Town"
"Do It with Style"
1978 "Touch My Love"
1979 "You Deserve to Dance"
"Fire"
1980 "Give Me Some Emotion" 107 41
1981 "Kemo-Kimo" 69 68
"Let Me Be the One" 64
"Night Life in the City"
(with the Love Unlimited Orchestra)
"Welcome Aboard"
(with the Love Unlimited Orchestra)
"—" denotes releases that did not chart.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e "Webster Lewis, Entertainer born". African American Registry.
  2. ^ a b Chadbourne, Eugene. "Webster Lewis Biography". AllMusic.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g "Webster Lewis – Awards". AllMusic. Archived from the original on April 28, 2016. Retrieved August 20, 2022.

External links[edit]