Ken Williams, a Grammy Award-Winning Songwriter, Passes Away at 83

songwriter-ken-williams-obituary
Image: courtesy of Williams' family.

Renowned songwriter Kenneth “Ken” Williams, who wrote songs for Donny Hathaway, The Four Tops, Peaches & Herb and The Main Ingredient, passed away on June 17 in Manhasset, N.Y., reports ABC News. He was 83.

His passing was confirmed by his wife, Broadway actress and singer Mary Seymour Williams, who said he passed due to a COVID-19-related illness.

In 1968, Williams founded A Dish-A-Tunes LLC Publishing, a family-owned and operated music company which registered over 500 songs listed in his discography.

Released in 1972, Williams, along with his songwriting partners Rudy Clark and J.R. Bailey penned the classic Main Ingredient song “Everybody Plays the Fool,” which has been covered by several artists. Recently, his songs have been sampled by Alicia Keys, Lil’ Wayne and many more.

In 2004, Williams won a Grammy for the song “You Don’t Know My Name” by Keys, which produced by Kayne West, and sampled Williams’ 1975 song “Let Me Prove My Love to You,” which he co-wrote for The Main Ingredient.

Throughout his career, Williams penned “Love, Love, Love” by Donny Hathaway, “I Can’t See Me Without You” by The Impalas, “Let Me Prove My Love To You” by The Main Ingredient, “Only When You’re Lonely” by Holly Maxwell, “Seven Lonely Nights” by The Four Tops, “Keep on Holding On” by Margaret Reynolds and “Hoping You Will Come Back” by Sandra Phillips.

Along with his wife Mary, Williams is survived by his sister, Dorothy Jones; sons Kenny Williams Jr., Kevin D. Williams, and Kalvin Williams; a daughter, Cheryl Nicholson; a stepson, Kenny J. Seymour; grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

We extend our condolences to the family and friends of Ken Williams.

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