Chick Willis BIO
It is no exaggeration to state that the blues is one of the most flexible of musical forms. While most people associate this music with despair, the down and out, and the overcoming of adversity, it is also a sanctuary for much humor about the human condition. While the majority of performers only hint at this and even fewer utilize it effectively, hilarity and good times permeate the music of Blues Recording Artist “Chick Willis”. He can, and often does lay down some serious Blues. But his good nature and concern for his audience almost demand that he keep it on the light side. Chick, who currently resides in Forsyth, Georgia, was born in 1934 in Cabiness, Georgia. His dad was a railroad man and the Willis family moved to Atlanta when he was about 6 years of age. He was surrounded by music as a youngster and displayed an early affinity by teaching himself guitar while already having experience with vocals, learned by singing with a gospel group he and his brother and cousins sang with at their family church, and other church gatherings. His early influences included Sam “Lighting” Hopkins, Guitar Slim, T-Bone Walker, and Little Milton in the later years. He became good enough in his late teens to begin working professionally in Atlanta at the old Royal Peacock Club, where he backed or played with a wide variety of talent such as Jackie Wilson, The Five Royals, Ray Charles, Big Joe Turner, Nappy Brown, Sam Cooke, Jimmy Reed, and many others at venues ranging from the Apollo Theater to the Magnolia Ballroom. He made his recording debut around this time for the small Ebb record label out of Los Angeles, California.