The former first lady wrote on Twitter that Withers “made the sort of music that you couldn’t help but sing along to.”
“He had a gift for giving voice to our joys and our sorrows,” she added. “Truly one of the greats. Barack and I send love and prayers to his family and friends. He will be missed.”
Bill Withers made the sort of music that you couldn’t help but sing along to—from “Lean on Me” to “Lovely Day,” he had a gift for giving voice to our joys and our sorrows. Truly one of the greats. Barack and I send love and prayers to his family and friends. He will be missed.
— Michelle Obama (@MichelleObama) April 4, 2020
Withers, who wrote and sang timeless hits like “Lean on Me,” “Ain’t No Sunshine” and “Lovely Day,” died from heart complications, his family said in a statement to The Associated Press.
The three-time Grammy Award winner’s classic “Lean on Me” was memorably performed by Mary J. Blige at President Barack Obama’s 2009 inauguration.
In a video of Blige’s performance, the Obamas can be seen singing along to Withers’ song, which was the title theme of a 1989 movie starring Morgan Freeman.
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