Musical palate cleanser, ain’t no sunshine edition

Sigh.

Bill Withers, a onetime Navy aircraft mechanic who, after teaching himself to play the guitar, wrote some of the most memorable and often-covered songs of the 1970s, including “Lean on Me,” “Ain’t No Sunshine” and “Use Me,” died on Monday in Los Angeles. He was 81.

His death, at a hospital, was announced by his family. His son, Todd, said Mr. Withers had had heart problems.

Mr. Withers, who had an evocative, gritty R&B voice that could embody loss or hope, was in his 30s when he released his first album, “Just as I Am,” in 1971. It included “Ain’t No Sunshine,” a mournful lament (“Ain’t no sunshine when she’s gone/And she’s always gone too long/Anytime she goes away”) that cracked the Billboard Top 10.

 

It seemed like there was a stretch in the early ’70s when you couldn’t cut on the radio and not hear a Withers song.

And has there ever been a more compelling groove than this?

Bonus football-related clip here:

RIP, brother.

8 Comments

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8 responses to “Musical palate cleanser, ain’t no sunshine edition

  1. Dawglicious

    Thanks, Senator, both videos brought a much needed smile this morning!

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  2. Use me is now and has been for years the ringback tone on my phone. I feel that I have to share good music with everyone I can. Bill was one of the best at making good music. RIP

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  3. Greg

    That football related clip was just awesome. He will be missed, a great one…thanks!

    You all stay safe out there..

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  4. Morris Day

    Any day I hear Bill Withers is a Lovely Day! RIP

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  5. Russ

    Great clips, Senator. Thank you for posting them.

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  6. Mark

    The voice of my high school years.

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  7. RIP Brother Bill. . .yeah Senator, Use Me is literally one of my all time favorite songs, any genre.

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