Since his childhood in rural Jamaica, Eurtis “Purple” Williams has been surrounded by music. It was only natural that he became a professional musician, playing in several bands and touring with high-profile artists.
That impressive profile culminated with the release in March, 2020 of “Day by Day,” his debut vocal album which is distributed by Zojak World Wide. The set has 12 reggae songs, each arranged and produced by the talented guitarist/singer/songwriter. It contains the title track, as well as “Wicked Man” and covers of Marvin Gaye‘s “What’s Going On” and “Crystal Blue Persuasion,” originally done by Tommy James and The Shondells. For Williams, “Day by Day” shows a different side to his skills. “I believe it was time for people to hear what I am capable of. Most of the songs I write are about reality,” he said.
Eurtis Williams‘ roots are steeped in religion. The youngest of four children, he grew up in Gayle, a rustic district in St. Mary Parish, Eastern Jamaica. St. Mary has produced a number of artists such as Josey Wales, Lady Saw, Admiral Tibet and Capleton. He learned to play instruments in church but by the early 1980s, was playing in secular bands on Jamaica’s tourist circuit. During his near 10-year run playing in hotels in Ocho Rios, Montego Bay and Negril, Williams not only developed his chops as a guitarist, but rubbed shoulders with musicians who went on to enjoy successful careers. Among them bass guitarist/singer Benjy Myaz, guitarist Mikey Spice and guitarist Junior Jazz. Williams was also a member of producer Courtney Cole‘s Roof Extension Band, which backed acts like Tony Curtis and Jigsy King on major live shows like Reggae Sumfest. He also played the High Seas, doing a stint with the Carnival Cruise line.
Migrating to the United States in the 1990s, he continued to make strides. He was a founding member of the Millennium Band, a South Florida-based unit that has backed elite artists such as Freddie McGregor, Marcia Griffiths, Sanchez, Richie Stephens and Luciano.
Inspired by maestros such as Jimi Hendrix and George Benson, Purple Williams also shows his guitar prowess on “Day by Day.” It is a collection of quality songs worth listening.