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The 10 Best Bill Withers’ Songs

FILE – In this June 21, 2006 file photo, singer-songwriter Bill Withers poses in his office in Beverly Hills, Calif. Withers, who wrote and sang a string of soulful songs in the 1970s that have stood the test of time, including “Lean On Me,” “Lovely Day” and “Ain’t No Sunshine,” died in Los Angeles from heart complications on Monday, March 30, 2020. He was 81. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon, File)

Bill Withers‘ career as a musician might have been quite brief but he is regarded as one of the most influential songwriters of all time and his songs attest to that fact as they still elicit an emotional response from listeners.

The three-time Grammy awards winner died on Monday, March 30, 2020, from heart complications at the age of 81.

An encompassing list of artists such as Barbra Streisand, Michael Jackson, Liza Minnelli, Aretha Franklin, Tom Jones, Maroon 5, Linda Ronstadt, Paul McCartney, Sting, Joe Cocker, Johnny Mathis, Mick Jagger, Boney James, Al Jarreau, Morrisey, Nancy Wilson, Jimmy Buffett, Diana Ross, Shirley Bassey and Willie Nelson, Jay-Z, Akon, Kanye West, Tupac Shakur, DMX and BlackStreet have either covered or utilized samples from Withers’ song.

Here are some of Bill Withers’ best song:

Lean On Me

“Lean On Me” was released in April 1972 as the first single from his second album, Still Bill. It was his first and only number-one single on both the soul singles and the Billboard Hot 100. It is ranked number 208 on Rolling Stone’s list of “The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time”.
The song is frequently played at charity events. Mary J. Blige performed the song at the HBO We Are One: The Obama Inaugural Celebration at the Lincoln Memorial (January 18, 2009). The next day, a crowd spontaneously began singing the song in the Purple Tunnel of Doom under the National Mall as they waited to gain entrance to the inauguration ceremonies.

Ain’t No Sunshine

“Ain’t No Sunshine” was released as a single in 1971, becoming a breakthrough hit for Withers. The song reached number six on the U.S. R&B Chart and number three on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

Just Two Of Us

“Just the Two of Us” is a 1980 R&B song written by Bill Withers, William Salter and Ralph MacDonald. The song originally appeared on Washington’s album Winelight (1980). The song won a Grammy Award for Best R&B Song.

The Same Love That Made Me Laugh

“The Same Love That Made Me Laugh” was released in 1974 from the album +’Justments. It was covered in 1977 by Diana Ross on her LP Baby It’s Me.

Use Me

“Use Me” was released in August 1972. The song reached No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, making it Withers’ second-biggest hit in the United States.

Lovely Day

“Lovely Day” was released on December 21, 1977 and appears on Withers’ 1978 album Menagerie. In 1995, “Lovely Day” was used in adverts for Tetley tea and again in 1999 for a Gap commercial directed by Hype Williams.

In The Name Of Love

Kissing My Love

Grandma’s Hands

“Grandma’s Hands” was released in 1971. Withers wrote the song about his grandmother.

Make Love To Your Mind

“Make Love To Your Mind” was released in 1975.

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Bill Withers
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