A. C. Williamson

Mr. Ace Williamson was born in 1936 at home in the Pleasant Grove area to Alfred and Ocie Williamson. Ace was the oldest of five children. His father was a farmer and growing up they worked cutting stove and heating wood, milking the cows, feeding the chickens and mules and horses. At fifteen, he began playing the bass (standup) in the band, The Southernaires. His band played in honky-tonks from Bossier to around 1951 and 1952. From there, they went to Bob's Log Cabin at Campti and then the Skyway Club in Bossier City. At age 15 he played at one of his favorite shows, the Ouachita Valley Jamboree, which was like the Louisiana Hayride but in Monroe, Louisiana. Ace's music interest came around the age of seven or eight from watching his uncles play and his grandmother played guitar. He listened to the radio when he was a kid and liked to listen to Mexican music, Wolfman Jack, KWKH and Brother Gatemouth Page who was actually Frank Page, playing soul and gospel music for the Stan the record man who sponsored show. Besides playing the standup bass, Ace also played the drums but only to play the backbeat, so he does not call himself a drummer. He played at The Chef, Sansone's, Ernest's and The Skyway Club in Bossier. Out on Cross Lake, they played at Lake Cliff. He remembers the Bossier Strip and how Merle Kemmerly brought all the neon flashing lights to Saks Whisk A Go-Go. . His favorite place to play was the Show Bar which was the bar that was behind The Stork Supper Club and at the Hideaway. Ace played The Hayride and quite a lot in Texarkana as well as in Monroe and in Alexandria at the military bases and some in East Texas. He says that music began going downhill in the '70's. The music union at one time had about 500 members here. Back then, besides needing to be a member to play in clubs, they would have meetings and help book shows. When he was booking bands, he booked Harmon Drew, John Fred and the Playboys and The Newbeats. He met and married his first wife when he was nineteen and they had two children. He had one child with his second wife and has two grandchildren and six great grandchildren.