Passings: Chick Willis (1934 - 2013)

Blues singer Chick Willis, also known as the Stoop Down Man, died on Saturday evening from cancer at the age of 79.

A message was posted on Willis' official webpage:
Our beloved Chick Willis has passed this Saturday evening December 7th. The family ask for help with his finale resting. We ask for any help you can by donating at any Bank Of America. Make check out to: The Chick Willis Foundation. Account #334040908303. Lets keep The Stoop Down Man in our memories. God bless. Thank You.
After Willis got out of the military in the early-50's, he began chauffeuring for his cousin, Chuck Willis (C.C. Rider), while honing his singing skills. In 1956, he won a talent contest in Atlanta which led to him recording and releasing his first single, You're Mine, on Ebb Records.

Chick went out on tour with his cousin where he learned to play guitar and, when Chuck passed away in 1957, he moved over to playing with Elmore James. He continued to record the occasional single throughout the 60's but it was his 1972 single, Stoop Down Baby, for which he is best remembered. The track was a big jukebox hit but received virtually no airplay because of the subject matter.

Stoop Down Baby set the tone for much of his music for the rest of his career as he recorded numerous adult-themed songs. His 1972 album Stoop Down Baby...Let Your Daddy See was his last for 13 years before he signed with Ichiban Records which released seven of his LPs between 1985 and 1994. Since then, Willis has recorded an additional nine albums for a variety of labels including 2009's Hit and Run Blues.

Among Willis' awards were Living Blues Awards' Best Live Performer (2006, 2010), Best Down Home Blues Song (2009, 1,2,3,4,5 Shots of Whiskey) and the Lowell Fulson Jus Blues Award (2010).

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