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Emery “Detroit Junior” Williams, Jr. (October 26, 1931 – August 9, 2005) was an American blues pianist, vocalist, and songwriter. He is known for songs such as "So Unhappy", "Call My Job", "If I Hadn't Been High", "Ella" and "Money Tree". His songs have been covered by Koko Taylor, Albert King and other blues artists.
Born in Haynes, Arkansas, Detroit recorded his first single, "Money Tree" with the Bea & Baby label in 1960. His first full album, Chicago Urban Blues, was released in the early 1970s on the Blues on Blues label. He also has recordings on Alligator, Blue Suit, The Sirens Records, and Delmark.
Detroit Junior began his career in Detroit, Michigan, backing touring musicians such as Eddie Boyd, John Lee Hooker, and Amos Milburn. Boyd brought him to Chicago, Illinois in 1956, where he spent the next twelve years. In the early 1970s, Detroit toured and recorded with Howlin' Wolf. After the death of Wolf in 1976, Detroit returned to Chicago, where he lived and performed until his death from heart failure in 2005.
He was survived by his wife Ella, and brothers Keith and Kenneth H. Williams
Emery Williams Jr. is a living link to the great Chicago blues piano
players of the 1940s and 1950s. Born on October 26, 1931, in Haynes, AR,
Williams was given the name Detroit Junior when be began recording on
his own in the 1960s. As a child, Williams was moved around quite a bit,
as his family relocated from Arkansas to Memphis, then to Pularski, IL,
and finally to Flint, MI, where Williams lived with his grandmother. It
was there that he began playing keyboards, learning on his grandmother’s
organa (a parlor instrument that was part organ, part piano). Soon he
was playing piano in the tough clubs and juke joints around Flint,
eventually relocating to Chicago in the early ’50s, where he began
playing with the likes of Eddie Boyd, Jimmy Reed, and Eddie Taylor.