Singing a mixture of blues, ballads, popular songs, and jazz standards, Joe Williams was an elegant and sophisticated baritone known for his clear pronunciation and jazz styling. His name may not as well known to the general public as it should be, but Joe Williams is nevertheless counted among the masters of jazz and blues singing; he has, in fact, earned the title Emperor of the Blues. His singing style, which he developed over a long and consistently successful career, contributed to the success of the Count Basie Orchestra and influenced the style of many younger singers.
Joseph Goreed was born in the small farming town of Cordele, Georgia, on December 12, 1918. His father vanished when Williams was very young, His mother, who was no older than 18 when she gave birth to her only child, provided a strong emotional bond until her death in 1968.