In 1977 the album 'Song Bird' was released, and it featured the number 13 single "Baby, Baby My Love's All for You". The following year the dynamic singer recorded an entire album with Johnny Mathis, 'That's What Friends are For' (recently remastered & expanded with 4 bonus tracks in 2003!), and scored her first number one song on both the R&B and pop charts with the duet 'Too Much, Too Little, Too Late'. The follow-up single, 'You're All Need to Get By', was also recorded with Mathis and it was a Top Ten single.
Still under Maurice White's tutelage, Williams moved over to his new American Recording Company (ARC) label and released the album 'When Love Comes Calling' in 1979 (containing the disco hit "I've Got The Next Dance"), and a few more releases before scoring the smash hit 'Silly' (from 1981's 'Niecy' album). Written by Williams and produced by famed producer Thom Bell, she sang this song from her own personal experience as well. The single became a Top Ten gem, and later Bell returned the sweet songstress to the top of the charts with 'It's Gonna Take a Miracle'. Another remake, 'I'm So Proud' was also a hit released from Niecy's 1982 album, 'I'm So Proud' (also on Columbia).
Always writing from her own experience, Williams wrote the Top Ten single 'Do What You Feel' (also from 'I'm So Proud'!) based on the ordeals of someone else. (A believer in the song at the time, she no longer employs those beliefs). Niecy's angelic vocals also graced TV in 1982 on another duet with Johnny Mathis titled 'Without Us' (now a bonus track on the 2003 edition of 'That's What Friends Are For'), which was the theme song for the hit sitcom 'Family Ties'. In 1983, Deniece joined her friend Philip Bailey (of EWF) on a nice duet, 'It's Our Time', which is on his rare solo album titled 'Continuation'. The next year Williams conquered the pop charts with the number one hit 'Let's Hear It for the Boy'. Featured on the 'Footloose' soundtrack, the single was produced by music virtuoso George Duke, who initially thought the song was too pop-ish and would not work, but the song was such a HUGE hit that Niecy was the musical guest on TV's 'Saturday Night Live'. Duke's production savvy proved to be as paramount as Williams' vocals, so 'Let's Hear It For The Boy' would also be the title of Niecy's album in 1984.
In 1984, the sensational singer recorded 'Black Butterfly' (also on '...For The Boy'). From a African American perspective, Williams immediately bonded with the song. The song would become a prelude to the uplifting Gospel material Williams would record a few years later. With her label (Columbia) uninterested, Williams released the Gospel album 'From the Beginning' on Sparrow Records in 1986. The album featured the Grammy-award winning single 'They Say'. Also in 1986, Deniece provided background vocals for Howard Hewett's classic anthem 'Say Amen'. While on a hot streak in '86, Williams also won a Grammy Award for 'I Surrender All' and then another for 'I Believe in You' in 1987.
While Deniece continued releasing secular albums like 'Hot On The Trail' (1986), 'Water Under The Bridge' (which featured her final hit song 'Never Say Never' in 1987), and 'As Good As It Gets' (1988), her mainstream popularity faded (partly due to a lack of record promotion by Columbia/CBS!!), so she concentrated on her 1st love, Gospel music!!
Never a big fan of touring, Deniece Williams remains a home body. She enjoys the creative side of music (writing and singing), her family (four boys) and her home. On occasion she may sing on her friend's CDs (w/ Johnny Mathis in 1988, Nancy Wilson in 1990, George Duke in 1992, Stevie Wonder in 1995, and with Paul Jackson Jr. in 2001!!) or make public appearances at Gospel music events, but don't expect Niecy to worry about 'the charts' anymore. Her rightful place with religious songs & in music history is secure!!