Born: March 17, 1948
Jessica Williams is a well-known and highly respected pianist and composer who has deep roots in the Jazz Tradition. The two-time Grammy Nominee was born in Baltimore, Maryland, and classically trained at the Peabody Conservatory of Music. In her teens, Jessica moved to Philadelphia and began playing with the great Philly Joe Jones, drummer for the Miles Davis Quintet. Later, she moved to California, where she played in the bands of Eddie Harris, Dexter Gordon, Tony Williams, Stan Getz, Big Nick Nicholaus, Airto and Flora, Charlie Rouse, John Abercrombie, Charlie Haden, Leroy Vinnegar, and others. She has received two grants from the National Endowment for the Arts; a Rockerfeller Grant for composing; the Alice B. Toklas Grant for Women Composers, and the prestigious John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship. Jessica has been an honored guest on NPR's Fresh Air with Terry Gross, and on Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz....
- The Art of the Piano by Jack Bowers
Jessica is a beautiful player. -McCoy Tyner
The most important pianist to arrive since Bill Evans. -Alun Morgan, Gramophone
Im running out of superlatives to describe her playing! -Humphrey Littleton, BBC
A vibrant force on the contemporary music scene. -Rolling Stone
She should be heard by everyone who cares about jazz. -William Stephenson, Jazziz Magazine
Jessica Williams may be the great living lyric poet of the piano. She is utterly magnificent. -Jeff Simon, The Buffalo News
I will say on record that I think she is the finest pianist of our time...