First Released: 2013Commentary: The Essential Bill Withers is a reminder of the immortal mystique that surrounds one of our most gifted 20th century songwriters, who recently celebrated his 75th birthday on July 4th. This two CD package was compiled and produced by Grammy®-nominated Legacy veteran Leo Sacks and Marcia Withers (Bill’s wife and manager), who dig deep into Bill’s catalog, beyond the timeless quartet of ’71-’72 hits that established his career, Grammy® Hall Of Fame classics “Ain’t No Sunshine” and “Lean On Me,” “Grandma’s Hands,” and “Use Me.” The collection moves into personal (and fan) favorites and rare singles, as well as album tracks covering each and every one of Bill’s eight studio albums, from 1971’s Just As I Am debut to 1985’s Watching You Watching Me. The icing on the cake is the trio of off-label ’80s collaborations that put Bill in the good company of the Jazz Crusaders (“Soul Shadows”), Grover Washington, Jr. (“Just The Two Of Us”), and Ralph MacDonald (“In The Name Of Love”). The package features a biographical essay by Los Angeles-based arts and culture journalist Lynell George.

–Sony Music

Track List

Disc: 1
Theme From Man And Boy (Better Days)
Ain’t No Sunshine
Grandma’s Hands
Hope She’ll Be Happier
Better Off Dead
Lonely Town, Lonely Street
Let Me In Your Life
Who Is He (And What Is He To You)?
Use Me
Friend of Mine
I Can’t Write Left-Handed
Lean On Me
Make A Smile For Me
The Same Love That Made Me Laugh
Heartbreak Road
Railroad Man
Disc: 2
Family Table
The Best You Can
Hello Like Before
I Wish You Well
Don’t You Want To Stay?
I’ll Be With You
My Imagination
Lovely Day
I Want To Spend The Night
Tender Things
Let Me Be The One You Need
Memories Are That Way
Soul Shadows
Just The Two Of Us
In The Name of Love
We Could Be Sweet Lovers
Something That Turns You On