“It’s not dark, but it’s different,” says versatile guitarist, songwriter, and producer DJ Williams of his new LP, Mistah Weems.

His inspiration came from a dark place and time, he explains—early 2021, hiding away in his parents’ guest room—but rather than reflecting his despair, this new collection of songs hears him exorcising those demons. “This record is a reflection of my separation with drugs and alcohol,” the Denver-based Williams explains. “My separation with someone I once loved, a sense of finding out who I really am, a combination of confidence and being insecure, and quite possibly the most honest collection of music I’ve ever created. I’m truly excited to release this music out into the world.”

Mistah Weems is set to arrive on March 4th via Williams’ independent imprint, Projekt Music, and features 10 original tracks composed by Williams with guest appearances from DJ Harrison (Butcher Brown), Eric “Benny” Bloom (Lettuce), Shira Elias (formerly Turkuaz), James Petralli (White Denim), Todd Herrington (Cris Jacobs Band), Kim Dawson (Matador! Soul Sounds), and many more.

Today, ahead of the album’s release, Live For Live Music is thrilled to premiere the first single from DJ Williams’ Mistah Weems, “Ballad of Donny Noble”. Arriving alongside an animation-assisted music video, the track marks listeners’ first taste of the album’s brooding sonic palette.

A collaborative effort featuring Williams (bass, guitar, dobro) alongside Cris Jacobs Band’s Dusty Ray Simmons (vocals, mellotron, organ, drums), Brittany O’Neill (vocals), and rapper Marcus Tenney, “Ballad of Donny Noble” takes DJ’s typical soul-rock style in a smokier, more R&B-oriented direction. The song’s narrative presents the titular anti-hero brazenly strutting down a dark path in life, and the video’s mix of animated depictions and graphically enhanced home video footage (courtesy of animator Ian Miller and video editor Eric Imbrosciano) helps match the song’s foreboding groove.

It’s easy to lose yourself in the haze of guitars and layered vocals—not to mention Tenney’s well-crafted verse—but “Ballad of Donny Noble” settles into your subconscious, leaving you humming its central warning all night long: “You’re gonna need somebody when you come down.”

Watch the music video for “Ballad of Donny Noble” by DJ Williams below. Keep an eye on DJ’ website and social media for upcoming announcements of east coast and west coast tour dates.

DJ Williams ft. Dusty Ray Simmons, Brittany O’Neill, Marcus Tenney – “Ballad of Donny Noble” (Official Video)

[Video: DJ Williams]

On Tuesday, 2/22/22, DJ Williams will join an extensive lineup of musicians and Denver, CO’s Cervantes’ Masterpiece Ballroom for Come Alive For Colorado, a benefit for those impacted by the Boulder-area fires in late 2021.

Other artists set to appear at Come Alive For Colorado on February 22nd include Kris Myers (Umphrey’s McGee, Kick The Cat), Jason Hann (The String Cheese Incident), Dominic Lalli (Big Gigantic), Adam Deitch (Lettuce, Break Science), Borahm Lee (Break Science), Marcus Rezak, and a number of extended The Motet family members including current band members Dave WattsJoey PorterRyan Jalbert, and Garrett Sayers and past member Scott Messersmith.

Tickets to Come Alive For Colorado: A Benefit For Marshall Fire Survivors are now on sale via the Cervantes’ website here. Proceeds from tickets sales will go to survivors of the Marshall Fire via Call On Music, an organization that uses the arts and entertainment community as a platform to raise funds and awareness for various charitable organizations through live music and entertainment events.

marshall fire benefit, come alive for colorado