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Deniece Williams (born June Deniece Chandler; June 3, 1950) is an American singer, songwriter and record producer who achieved success in the 1970s and 1980s. Williams is known for hits such as "Free" (1976), "Silly" (1981), "It's Gonna Take a Miracle" (1982), "Let's Hear It for the Boy" (1984), and for her duets with Johnny Mathis.
Born in Gary, Indiana, Williams attended Morgan State University in Baltimore, Maryland in the hopes of becoming a registered nurse and an anesthetist but dropped out after a year and a half. "You have to be a good student to be in college, and I wasn't." She also performed on the side during that time. ("I got a part-time job singing at a club, Casino Royal, and I liked it. It was a lot of fun.") During those years Williams worked also in a telephone company and as a ward clerk in the Chicago Mercy Hospital.