RIP Bill Withers

As if things weren’t challenging enough already in 2020, I heard we just lost Bill Withers to heart complications.  He brought reassurance and joy to the world, and especially now in these times he’ll be missed.  How can you not hear Lovely Day and not feel good about being alive?  How can you not hear Lean On Me and not feel that this too shall pass?  And so I reflect on four songs that everyone knows, or should know, from the great Bill Withers:

Lean On Me
Who hasn’t needed this song at least once or twice in their lives?  Yeah, that’s what I thought.

“Sometimes in our lives we all have pain
We all have sorrow
But if we are wise
We know that there’s always tomorrow

Lean on me, when you’re not strong
And I’ll be your friend
I’ll help you carry on
For it won’t be long
‘Til I’m gonna need
Somebody to lean on”

Use Me
Sure, she’s abusing you, but it’s way too fun to say goodbye.

“My brother sit me right down and he talked to me
He told me that I ought not to let you just walk on me
And I’m sure he meant well yeah but when our talk was through
I said brother if you only knew you’d wish that you were in my shoes
You just keep on using me until you use me up
Until you use me up”
Ain’t No Sunshine
That certain someone has gone away, and man I’m in a dark place now.

“Wonder this time where she’s gone
Wonder if she’s gone to stay
Ain’t no sunshine when she’s gone
And this house just ain’t no home
Anytime she goes away”

Lovely Day
Pure joy, and a regular on my playlists, especially as the weather gets a bit warmer.  This is an automatic mood booster.

“When I wake up in the morning, love
And the sunlight hurts my eyes
And something without warning, love
Bears heavy on my mind

Then I look at you
And the world’s alright with me
Just one look at you
And I know it’s gonna be
A lovely day”


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