Bulger's Beat: Energetic artist keeps passion rolling - WSMV Channel 4

Bulger's Beat: Energetic artist keeps passion rolling

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The electrifying performance of Memphis piano man Jason D. Williams is often described as a must-see.

Music shows these days often come with perfectly practiced choreography, but Williams has his own plan.

"So spontaneous that it's beautiful," he said. "It excites me. Sometimes you'll see me play, see me laughing, because I just did something and have no idea what I did."

The entertainer has been performing rock-a-billy shows since the 1970s, and no two shows are ever the same.

"I've had two of my band members over 25 years, and we've never rehearsed one time. I tell people if we ever go on stage and I know what I'm doing, I'm in trouble," Williams said.

Born in Arkansas, music soon pulled him to Memphis and Sun Records. Now, he's on the road playing 200 shows a year.

This week, you can see him play a free gig at the downtown branch of the Nashville Public Library on Tuesday. And he already knows what the crowd will think.

"I get sort of the same reaction, 'I've never seen it done like that before.' Well, me neither," Williams said.

Some may be surprised his high-energy does not follow him off stage, and the piano isn't the only thing he takes on tour.

"Also bring the binoculars wherever I go," he said.

He has spent 45 years bird watching, just as he was Monday morning at Edwin Warner Park. His is a life surrounded by bush warblers in the morning and boogie-woogie at night.

While his live shows are a spectacle, his talent and passion are off the charts, too.

On stage, you can't fake either.

"I do love it. It's a part of me," Williams said. "I've heard it said I get my fans the old fashioned way, one at a time. Well, that's true. People see it and say, 'you've got to come see this guy.'"

Williams' performance Tuesday at the downtown library is the final show in this year's Courtyard Concerts Series. The show starts at 11:45 a.m.

For more information, visit: http://www.rockinjasondwilliams.com/.

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