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Blues pianist Emery Williams Jr dies at 73

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CHICAGO -- Blues pianist and songwriter Emery Williams Junior died today at his Chicago home at the age of 73.

Williams, who went by the stage name “Detroit Junior," died of heart failure early this morning at his home on the city's West Side.

Friends say Williams was a wild performer who would sometimes play the piano while lying on his back, despite having lost a leg to diabetes.

Williams was born in Haynes, Arkansas. He learned how to play the piano as a child and was playing in clubs at 19.

And while he only recorded four albums under his own name, “Detroit Junior" was an accomplished songwriter who composed hits for blues singers Albert King and Koko Taylor. He also played in bands with legends like Howlin' Wolf and Eddie Shaw.

-- Associated Press

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