Don Williams was an American country singer, songwriter and 2010 inductee to the Country Music Hall of Fame….who began his solo career in 1971 while singing popular ballads and amassing 17 # 1 country hits….with his straightforward yet smooth bass-baritone voice….soft tones….and imposing build earned him the nickname “Gentle Giant” of country music.
It was with the group the Pozo-Seco Singers that Williams….alongside Susan Taylor and Lofton Cline…. recorded several records for Columbia Records…..as he remained with the group until 1969….when it disbanded the following year….after which Williams briefly worked outside the music industry….when in December 1971….Williams signed on as a songwriter for Jack Clement with Jack Music Inc…..when In 1972, Williams inked a contract with JMI Records as a solo country artist…..and in 1974 his song, “We Should Be Together” reached # 5…..so, he then signed with ABC/Dot Records….and at the height of the country and western boom in the UK in 1976…..he had top forty pop chart hits with “You’re My Best Friend” and “I Recall a Gypsy Woman”….followed by a # 2 album, Images, in 1978.
His first single with ABC/Dot, “I Wouldn’t Want to Live If You Didn’t Love Me” became a # 1 hit….and was the first of a string of top ten hits that he had between 1974 and 1991….as only 4 of his 46 singles didn’t make it to the Top Ten….then in 1980 he recorded “I Believe in You” was Williams’ eleventh # 1 on the country chart….as it stayed at # 1 for two weeks….while spending 12 weeks on the country chart.
Williams had some minor roles in Burt Reynolds movies….as in 1975, he appeared as a member of the Dixie Dancekings band in the movie W.W. and the Dixie Dancekings alongside Reynolds. Don also appeared as himself in the Universal Pictures movie, Smokey and the Bandit II….in which he also played a number of songs.
Early in 2006, Williams announced his “Farewell Tour of the World”….and played numerous dates both in the U.S. and abroad….while wrapping the tour up with a sold-out “Final Farewell Concert” in Memphis, Tennessee at the Cannon Center for Performing Arts on November 21, 2006. In 2010, Williams came out of retirement and was once again touring….when in March 2012, Williams announced the release of a new record And So It Goes….which was his first new record since 2004. The record is his first with the independent Americana label Sugar Hill Records….and includes guest appearances by Alison Krauss, Keith Urban, and Vince Gill. As a much loved country artist among British fans Tour. A much loved country artist among British fans, he had his final UK tour in 2014. In March 2016, Williams announced he was retiring from touring and cancelled all his scheduled shows. “It’s time to hang my hat up and enjoy some quiet time at home. I’m so thankful for my fans, my friends and my family for their everlasting love and support,” he said in a statement.