When most think of Don Williams, the soft-country hit “I Believe In You,” is the song that most often comes to mind. While Williams scored dozens of hits during his long career, this 1980 song was his only Top 40 crossover hit and exposed him to a broader audience just as the “Urban Cowboy” craze was sweeping the nation.
But it is a mistake to judge the singer by one single. A member of the folk-pop group Pozo-Seco Singers, Williams launched his solo career in 1971. His straightforward ballads and pleasing voice propelled 17 No. 1 hits, beginning with 1974’s “I Wouldn’t Want to Live If You Didn’t Love Me.” His 1978 song, “Tulsa Time,” was also a huge hit for Eric Clapton.
Williams retired in 2006 only to return to touring in 2010 after being inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. He is indeed a country giant worth listening to—and seeing (he’s 72 and may not pass this way again). Tyson Rogers, a former Signal Mountain resident, plays keyboard with Williams.