Lee Shot Williams
Lee Shot Williams
He was born Henry Lee Williams in Lexington, Mississippi on May 21, 1938.
Henry Lee Williams grew up in the country close to his cousin and fellow blues man, Little Smokey Smothers. He got the nickname "Shot" from his mother at a young age, owing to his fondness for wearing suits and dressing up as a "big shot."
In 2008 Williams signed with CDS Records. His first CD for the label was released in 2008 and produced the hits "It's Friday (Time To Get Paid)" and "Wrong Bed". Two more albums were released by CDS Records, "I'm The Man For The Job" & "The First Rule Of Cheating" in 2010. Williams passed away 11-25-2011.
"Country Disco" (Roots/TK 1977)
1. I'm Willing
"Shot Of Rhythm & Blues" (Vivid Sound/Soul Trax 1994)
1. Make Me Holler
**1/2 Very rare Japanese release contains tracks produced by guitarist Sonny Mack, songwriter Bob Jones and "Shot" himself. Ranging from mediocre covers of "My Girl", "Ace Of Spades" & "Choking Time" to strong Blues numbers like "These Blues Are Too Big", "After Hours" and "You Can't Hide From The Blues". Shot's vocal on the latter is possibly a career best.
"Cold Shot" (Black Magic 1995)
1. It It Wasn't For
*** Acclaimed set of brassy blues which includes the chestnuts "Tore Up", "If It Wasn't For Bad Luck" & "Neither One Of Us" and also some Lee "Shot" hits from the past like "Drop Your Laundry" & "Boogie Down On The Weekend". This disc is especially noteworthy for "Shot" fans because this features a mostly live band.
"Hot Shot" (Ecko 1996)
1. I'll Take the
*** First for Ecko is suited for "Shot" and features a big southern soul hit in "I'll Take The Risk". There's also ripping versions of his classics "I Like Your Style" & "Boogie Down On The Weekend". The set also contains what may be his finest moment, "Times Are Tough". The lyric: "Times are hard. Time are tough. Even Tarzan is mad about the world's situation. They stole his vine! His only means of transportation." Despite the humor there's an earnestness to the track that's truly Soulful.
"You Turn Me On" (Diamond Lady 1999)
"She Made A Freak Out Of Me" (Ecko 2000)
1. She Made a Freak
Out of Me
*** Lee "Shot" is back and scores a big hit with the title track. By this point he's fully immersed in being a southern soul-part blues singer- with most of the music expertly programmed and performed by the Ecko Records staff (John Ward). "Somebody Blew The Whistle On Me" is another hit where "Shot" complains one of his "playa hatin' friends" told his woman about his playin'. He names everybody from Artie "Blues Boy" White to Cicero Blake to Bobby Rush on this joint. Other standouts are "Sure Shot Man" & "I Got What I Wanted But Lost What I Had", which shows the sad results of cheating.
"Somebody's After My Freak" (Ecko 2001)
1. Somebody's After
*** Williams and Ecko staff follow the successful blueprint of the last "Freak" album with this fine follow up. "Somebody's After My Freak" has "Shot" complaining that ever since he told y'all about the girl who made a "freak out of me" men are trying to steal his good thang. Labelmate Rick Lawson answered this song with "Lee Shot, Come And Get Your Freak". Other hits include "The Strong Do Cry" & "Let's Party Now".
"Let The Good Times Roll" (Wilson 2002)
1. Let the Good
*** One-off release on Charles Wilson's label (Wilson Records). If you don't mind (or if you like) programmed soul/dance music you'll dig this infectious concoction. Floyd Hamberlin, who wrote all nine tracks, and Wilson himself produced this party music- heavy on a uniform programmed drum/synth combo. While "Sex Me Up" is a rip of Hot Chocolate's "Sexy Thing" the highlights are the ear candy "Shakey Ground", "Ain't No Woman" & "Crossroad". Chico Banks plays guitar on some tracks.
"Before The Honeymoon" (Hot Spot 2002)
** Mostly-forgettable and extremely rare CD includes a remake of "Freakology". Contains songs (like the title cut ,"Baby By An Outside Woman") new to Lee Shot's catalog and some old singles he released in the 80s but bootleg sound quality makes this a hard listen. For completists only. (The label , Hot Spot, recently produced a hit with Willie B. called "Larry Licker").
"Chicago Blues & Deep Soul Legend" (Famous Grooves 2003)
1 : I'm Trying
*** Varied collection of blues and soul from this fine performer recorded in the 60s and 70s starting with his wonderful first single from 1962 "I'm Trying/ Hello, Baby" where he is accompanied by Little Mac, Freddy Robinson, Detroit Jr. and others. The rest of tracks were recorded over the next 15 years for a dozen different labels and find Lee with different bands and with different arrangers but always sounding good. The downside is the poor sound quality and the inclusion of two cuts mistaken as sung by Lee Shot! (actual singer unknown)
"Get Down Tonight" (Ecko 2004)
1. Get Down Tonight
**** He's back where he found his most success (Ecko Records) and delivers the best disc of his career. 10 songs- 10 winners. Two big hits, "Get Down Tonight" & "Juke Joint Slide" get you dancing (or toe-tappin' n' head-bobbin' if you don't dance). A couple fine slowies in "Who's Your Daddy" & "Give Me All Your Love" & a bona fide blues with "Back Door Lover". As a bonus there's three remixes of "Juke Joint Slide" as "hidden tracks". Programmed "party blues", "soul blues" or modern "Southern Soul" at it's zenith.
"Nibble Man" (Ecko 2005)
1. Just Another Hole in the Wall
***1/2 Last year he delivered the fabulous soul/blues disc "Get Down Tonight" (featuring the hits "Juke Joint Slide" & "Get Down Tonight"- and several shoulda been smashes) and he aims to keep the momentum flowing here with this new party-themed disc. Things start off right with the dancer "Just Another Hole In The Wall", which is a kissing cousin to Carl Sims' recent hit "It's Just A Party". The first single is "Ease On Down In The Bed" with Lee Shot giving a humorous Bobby Rush-esque monologue on how to please your woman ("Ease on down in the bed a little further..."...but after he moves on down past her navel..he kisses her...her...her right knee- hee hee). A solid straight slow blues tune "You're Slackin' In The Bedroom" is here as is the album's highlight "I'm A Nibble Man", a smooth midtempo head bobber that's made for cruisin' in your ride. Not far behind is the thumping blues groove of "That's Really What The Blues Is All About". Lee Shot even revisits the "freak" theme with the self-penned "I Gotta Go Home So I Can Get My Freak On". All tracks are good but unfortunately there's only 9 new cuts here as track 10 is a "radio version" of "Ease On Down...". Fans of Southern soul blues, Lee Shot Williams or simply Ecko's (John Ward) patented sound will be very pleased.
"Starts With A P" (Ecko 2006)
1. Everything I Like to Eat Starts
with a "P"
**1/2 Like it or not modern Soul Blues or "Southern Soul" is mostly about sex, cheating and clubbing. If that ain't for you there's always Gospel. Anyway, there's just no denying songs comprised of double entendre and sexual innuendo are what sells in this market and "Shot" has been on a roll. Last year he scored two hits having to do with his oral fixations ("Ease On Down In The Bed" & "I'm A Nibble Man") and now he's back with another that'll make Marvin Sease wish he wrote it. Williams says "Everything I Like To Eat Starts With A P". You know, pizza, pot roast, peanuts, peaches...and I think you know where he's heading- the bedroom. It's not much of a song but if you liked "Ease On Down" you'll dig it. Hitbound fo' sho'. The innuendo continues on the mildly funky "Meat Man", featuring a big synth hook and the fine slowie "Knockin' The Boots" (making it's third appearance now). "It's Not What You Got It's What You Do With it" is another sweet, midtempo Southern Soul headbobber with radio potential but the real highlights are two Electric Blues cuts. After all, "Shot" first made a name for himself singing real Blues like the classics "Drop Your Laundry" and "I Like Your Style" and here he nails Don Nix's "Everybody Wants To Go To Heaven". Only Albert King's done better with this gem. It's a nice break from the programming that dominates the label's records. "Shot" also answers Aretha Franklin with "I Never Loved A Woman The Way I Love You". His disparate phrasing makes this a surprisingly effective Blues version. There should be a mandate thus forth that all Lee "Shot" Williams discs should contain a minimum of two straight blues cuts.
Lee 'Shot' Williams "Meat Man" (Ecko 2006)
1. Meat Man
*** Two albums in one year on Lee 'Shot' Williams. "Meat Man" finds Shot continuing the cunninlingus theme he's been obsessed with as of late. "Nibble Man" sported two such songs ("Ease On Down In The Bed" & "I'm A Nibble Man"), "Starts With A P" delivered a particularly blatant one ("Everything I Like To Eat Starts With A P") and now "Meat Man" has another (two if you count the "live" version of "Ease On Down"). "I Ate Too Much Over The Holidays" is a fitting a title indeed! The superfluous sex talk aside it's a great cut destined to gobble up the competition on the charts.
While Williams' Ecko outings always give concessions to trendy, risqué novelty songs, he's really a Deep Soul & Blues man at heart. The set gathers some obscure 45s released on other labels like "Midnight Love" and "I've Got A Problem", two smoldering Bluesers, while Shot powers out Wilson Pickett's "I Found A Love" on the Deep Soul side. Especially noteworthy is the original version of his classic "Times Are Tough" (from his Ecko debut "Hot Shot"). That unmistakable gruff voice is front and center on this gem- perhaps his finest moment on record. Plus you gotta love that clever lyric: "Times are hard. Time are tough. Even Tarzan is mad about the world's situation. They stole his vine! His only means of transportation." Despite the humor there's an earnestness to the track that's truly Soulful. "Meat Man" does have it's share of repeats from previous albums, such as the title track, a bouncer with an incessant keyboard hook that's essentially the same cut with added background voices. Deja vu strikes again on the great shuffle-bumper "I Got What I Wanted But Lost What I Had", which is either a remix or new version. "Midnight Love", "Ease On Down" & "Times Are Tough" aren't new to his canon either but pound-for-pound this is still a good Shot album.
"Shot From The Soul" (CDS 2008)
1. Country Woman
"The Best Of" (Ecko 2009)
1. She Made A Freak
Out Of Me
it comes to "best ofs" it's impossible to please everybody. If the
artist has an extensive career some key track is bound to miss the
cut. That said this 14-track collection pretty much gets it right.
You got the big hits "She Made A Freak Out Of Me", "I'll Take The
Risk", "Juke Joint Slide", "I'm A Nibble Man", etc. , his best
slowies ("Who's Your Daddy?", "Your Hoochie Boyfriend") and a lil'
juke joint Blues ("Down In The Hood").
****1/2 When it comes to "best ofs" it's impossible to please everybody. If the artist has an extensive career some key track is bound to miss the cut. That said this 14-track collection pretty much gets it right. You got the big hits "She Made A Freak Out Of Me", "I'll Take The Risk", "Juke Joint Slide", "I'm A Nibble Man", etc. , his best slowies ("Who's Your Daddy?", "Your Hoochie Boyfriend") and a lil' juke joint Blues ("Down In The Hood").
"I'm The Man For The Job" (CDS 2010)
1. I'm The Man For The Job
"The First Rule Of Cheating" (CDS 2010)
1. It Don't Take All Night
"Greatest Hits, Vol. 1" (CDS 2015)
1 Sleeping in the Wrong Bed
"2 Albums On 1 CD: Shot From The Soul & I'm The Man For The Job"
1 Country Woman