Culture

Bill Withers has passed away aged 81

Bill Withers has passed away aged 81”

Following a near-decade-long stretch in the United States Navy, Bill Withers made his way to Los Angeles to pursue a career in music.

Even as recently as 2015, Travis Scott, Shawn Mendes, and Camila Cabello, all part of the newest generation of hitmakers, had a touch of Withers' signature sounds in their singles. His music has become a staple in the entertainment industry as his songs were used in movies such as The Hangover, 28 Days, American Beauty, Jerry Maguire, and many more. His death comes as the public has drawn inspiration from his music during the coronavirus pandemic, with health care workers, choirs, artists and more posting their own renditions on "Lean on Me" to help get through the hard times. His demo tape eventually landed in the hands of Clarence Avant, and his first album, Just As I Am, was released under Sussex Records in 1971 where he remained until the label went bankrupt in 1975.

Withers based "Lean On Me" - a wildly popular ode to friendship that soundtracked the presidential inaugurations of Barack Obama and Bill Clinton - on his West Virginia childhood, inspired by selfless neighbors in cash-strapped times. I felt like a pawn. He released just one final album, 1985's Watching You Watching Me, in his brief but influential career.

Tributes began pouring out to the late songwriter, whose death came amid stress over the deadly coronavirus pandemic. His new executives found Withers hard.

More news: Coronavirus: South Korea extends intensive social distancing by 2 weeks

"I'm not a virtuoso, but I was able to write songs that people could identify with".

I had the honor of interview Mr. Withers for Essence in 2015 - the same year, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Seattle Seahawks Quarterback Russell Wilson said he grew up on Withers' music and that he will never be forgotten.

"My soul always has & always will be full of your music. you carried us all to a better place".



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