On Monday, March 30, 2020, the music world lost a huge star. Bill Withers, who is most known for his heartfelt hits, “Ain’t No Sunshine,” “Lean On Me,” and “Lovely Day.” He was 81 when he passed away due to heart complications.
Withers was born on July 4, 1938, in Slab Forks, West Virginia. After his father died, his mother and grandmother raised him and his five siblings. In 1965, after his nine years in the Navy, he moved to Los Angeles to pursue a career in music. During this time, he worked at the Boeing aircraft company making toilet seats in the daytime; at night he recorded his demos.
Sussex Records label signed Withers in 1970. He released his first album “Just As I Am” in 1971. His song “Ain’t No Sunshine” won him a Grammy for Best Rhythm and Blues Song. His song “Lean On Me” hit the top of the Billboard charts in 1972; and “Use Me” was number two in the charts. His songs have been featured in many movie soundtracks, “Starsky & Hutch,” “American Beauty,” “The Bodyguard,” and “The Simpsons,” to name a few.
On June 9, 2005, he was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame, in New York City.
Withers was married to Denise Nicholas from January 1973 to 1974. On Dec. 31, 1976, he married Marcia Renee Johnson, and they have two children together.
Many musicians and stars have gone to social media to pay their condolences. Lenny Kravitz is just one of the many people to say something about Withers online. “Rest in power Bill Withers. Your humility displayed & depth of your power as you carried us all to a better place,” this is just some of what Kravitz wrote.
The soulful singer is survived by his wife, son Todd, and daughter Kori. He shall be greatly missed; may he rest in peace.
By Sheena Robertson
Yahoo: Soul legend Bill Withers dies at age 81
CNN: Bill Withers, ‘Lean On Me’ and ‘Lovely Day’ singer, has died at 81
All Music: Bill Withers
IMDB: Bill Withers
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