great day logo
big picture

jazz musician picture
Mary Lou Williams
piano, composer, arranger: swing, big band

Mary Lou was a superb pianist and important arranger. Her style blended boogie-woogie and swing. At 13 she was working vaudeville shows. By 19 she was the pianist and arranger for the incredibly popular Andy Kirk band.

Mary Lou also wrote arrangements for Benny Goodman, Earl Hines and Tommy Dorsey. Some of her more famous songs were 'Walkin' and Swingin',' 'Little Joe From Chicago' and 'Satchel-Mout Baby.' Mary Lou also worked with Duke Ellington and Dizzy Gillespie. In 1954 she left the jazz world to become a Catholic.