RIP: Jerome Williams of the Evereadys

By Bob Marovich

Jerome Williams (courtesy: Facebook)

Sister Ducky, quartet and traditional gospel music correspondent in Detroit, reported the sad news that Jerome Williams of the Evereadys passed away yesterday morning at age 66, allegedly of complications from COVID-19.

The history of the Evereadys stretches back to Detroit 1950, when future R&B star Jackie Wilson formed an a cappella gospel group called the Ever Ready Gospel Singers with brothers Lorenzo and Emmanuel Jordan and bass singer Jack Johns. The group was locally popular and toured the Midwest, but when Wilson left to sing R&B, the Ever Ready Gospel Singers disbanded.

In 1967, after some persuasion, the Jordan brothers’ sister encouraged her sons, Freddie (b. September 29, 1951) and Jerome Williams (b. September 25, 1953), to sing gospel. Ultimately heeding their grandmother’s request to name their new group after the family’s Ever Ready Gospel Singers, the brothers and their cousins, Lorenzo and Gregory Jordan, formed as the Evereadys.

The Evereadys released a string of albums for Malaco, starting with Learning to Lean (1982); the passionately-sung title track became the group’s signature song. By the time the charting Just Think of His Goodness was recorded in 1984, the Evereadys had trimmed down to a five-man quartet of Jerome and Freddie Williams, Marvin Reed, Aaron Beasley and Rodney Bevins.

After contributing “Love is the Greatest Gift of All” to the 1985 Malaco Gospel at Christmastime compilation, the Evereadys ceased recording for a bit. They returned in 1991 with A Message for You, released on Great Joy Records. The album, which included another fan favorite,Separation Line,” hit #14 on the chart.

The Evereadys returned to the studio in the 2000s, recording Just for My Friends in 2005 for NFL wide receiver Joe Horn’s For Life Miracle Records. When Aaron Beasley passed away in October 2007, Marvin Reed, Freddie Williams, and Jerome Williams kept the group going.

The Darrell Luster-produced Finally Live (CD and DVD) was released on Malaco’s 4 Winds subsidiary in 2014. It featured the Evereadys singing “Learning to Lean” as well as classic hymns and quartet staples such as “I Stood on the Banks of Jordan,” “Come to Jesus,” and “Farther Along.”

The Evereadys recorded a new version of “Learning to Lean” for First Choice Gospel Records in March 2018.

Please keep the family, friends, and many fans of Jerome Williams and the Evereadys lifted in prayer.

About Bob Marovich

Bob Marovich is a gospel music historian, author, and radio host. Founder of Journal of Gospel Music blog (formally The Black Gospel Blog) and producer of the Gospel Memories Radio Show.

11 comments

  1. HAROLD JEFFERSON

    THERE IS ONLY ONE, MADE AS TALENTED AS JEROME WILLIAMES WAS. ONLY GOD COULD HAVE MADE HIM WITH ALL (THAT SPECIAL GIVEN) BLESSED TALENT. GOING TO MISS YOU OUR BROTHER. AMEN

  2. My heart is so heavy learning of the death of Jerome. He was one of the most talented yet underrated Gospel artist. His range was unmatched and his passion for singing the Gospel was soul touching. My condolences to his family, friends, and worldwide fans. He will be missed!😥

  3. My condolences to the Jerome Williams family

  4. I am praying the entire family. Jerome, could sing the heavens gates open. He will truly be missed.

  5. R.I.P. Jerome..one of the best in the business..you will be truly missed.😭😭🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽Praying for your family and group members..

  6. One of the best rest in heaven Jerome anointed voice singing for the Lord…..

  7. He was my favorite singer in the world. His voice brought me through a lot of hard times. May The Lord bless his family.

  8. Michael Jordan

    I’m at a loss for words. Truly one of my Favorite Quartet Singers

  9. I grew up listening to The Evereadys they came to our house and ate breakfast because they performed gospel shows in Rochester, NY.

    My father was the founder of the Jordan Gospel Singers of Utica, NY!

  10. Just discovered this group recently,never really liked quartet singing until I listened to the Everready’s couldn’t stop playing their songs..Loved Jerome’s vocal & energy the harmony was tight also…What a Phenomenal Group!❤🎤🎼sleep well Jerome Williams I know God is Pleased with your ability to touch souls through your songs🕊🕊🕊You are missed…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.