James Clifton Williams (1923 – 1976) was a gifted musician who excelled in many areas: composer, conductor, clinician, teacher and mentor. Most widely acclaimed as a composer of serious music for the concert wind band, he composed in many forms, and his prizes, awards, and honors were numerous. His compositions in this medium have become basic repertory for American, Canadian, European, and Japanese Bands. He was a true product of the American school band movement and one of the most prolific composers of serious contemporary music for the wind band. Born in the small town of Traskwood, Arkansas, Williams spent his junior high and high school years in Little Rock. It was during these years that he began experimenting with composition. Among his most notable high school works were a symphony for orchestra and a composition for band performed as processional music at his own commencement. After graduation, Williams attended Louisiana Tech University for one year and in 1942 joined the U.S. Air Force (Army Air Corps at that time) as a bandsman, for whom he composed many original works. After the war, he enrolled at
to Learn More!
Hear Clifton Williams Speak