Library Rock's Backpages

Bill Withers

Bill Withers

26 articles

Audio interviews

Bill Withers (2004)

Interview by Carl Wiser, Songfacts, 2 January 2004

A masterclass in songwriting from a master songwriter: how his songs came into being, collaborations with others and how his life experiences are reflected in his lyrics.

File format: mp3; file size: 27.4mb, interview length: 29' 59" sound quality: ** (phone)

Bill Withers (2004)

Interview by Bill DeMain, Rock's Backpages audio, 29 March 2004

The great soul singer-songwriter talks about his classic band, the Watts 103rd Street rhythm section; about his childhood and the music around him; his late start, and his scepticism of the record industry; the magical, mystifying process of songwriting; and of growing old and the lure of daytime TV...

File format: mp3; file size: 33.3mb, interview length: 34' 42" sound quality: ** (phoner)

List of articles in the library

By date | By writer | Most recently added

Bill Withers: Bitter End, New York NYC

Live Review by Mike Jahn, The New York Times, 30 July 1971

Bill Withers Plays In Soul-Folk Style ...

Willie Mitchell: Sounds like it's Memphis

Profile and Interview by Roger St. Pierre, New Musical Express, 11 December 1971

IF ANY one man personifies the solid beat of Memphis soul then surely it's Willie Mitchell. Not only has he turned out 14 hit albums ...

Bill Withers

Interview by John Abbey, Blues & Soul, April 1972

WHEN 1971 is finally evaluated in years to come, historians will look back and acknowledge Bill Withers as one of the most significant and important ...

Music Makers: Bill Withers

Interview by Michael Oberman, Evening Star, The (Washington DC), 8 July 1972

IN JUST over a year, Bill Withers has gone from manufacturing toilets for airplanes to writing and singing hit songs like 'Ain't No Sunshine' and ...

Bill Withers, Superstar

Report and Interview by Roger St. Pierre, New Musical Express, 12 August 1972

WITHIN a year of its composer Bill Withers taking it high up the American chart, 'Ain't No Sunshine' has become firmly established as a soul ...

Bill Withers: Leanin' On Bill Withers

Profile and Interview by Phil Symes, Disc, 26 August 1972

THAT OLD saying "never too late" is certainly true in the case of Bill Withers. Withers is just about the hottest male singer in America ...

Bill Withers: Morale Music For The People In The Ghetto

Interview by Ian MacDonald, New Musical Express, 2 September 1972

A TELEPHONE CABLE that runs off the edge of Britain, down under the Atlantic, and up again into the heart of North America to St. ...

Lots of Sunshine for Bill Withers

Profile and Interview by Phil Symes, Disc, 11 November 1972

MOST SONGWRITERS dream of one day writing a standard. Singers dream of establishing one. Bill Withers does both – frequently. You only have to look ...

Bill Withers: Making Music Till He Drops

Report and Interview by Jerry Gilbert, Sounds, 18 November 1972

THE QUEST for that intangible magic with which so few of us are blessed, can often entail a very long journey indeed. And whilst Bill ...

Bill Withers/Fontella Bass: Hammersmith Odeon, London

Live Review by David Nathan, Blues & Soul, 1 December 1972

IN THESE days when it's applied with alarming frequency to practically every new talent that emerges, the word "genius" as with so many other superlatives ...

Bill Withers: The Raggety Genius

Interview by Robin Katz, Disc, 9 December 1972

"I DON'T want to get dependent on being called a genius to survive. I don't want to get so sucked in by flattery that I ...

Bill Withers: A Star Now, Shocked By the Shallowness

Interview by Philip Elwood, The San Francisco Examiner, 27 December 1972

THE HUGELY successful singer Bill Withers is a big guy. When he comes through the doorway, he fills it; when he shakes hands, he really ...

Bill Withers: Live At Carnegie Hall (A&M)

Review by Jerry Gilbert, Sounds, 9 June 1973

FIRST TIME I saw Bill Withers live he was appearing at the huge Louisiana State Fair in Baton Rouge to a matter of about 20,000 ...

Bill Withers: Live At Carnegie Hall (A&M — double album)

Review by Nick Kent, New Musical Express, 23 June 1973

SOUNDS OF applause, opening bars or lazy stereotyped black funk, then a hoarse voice yelping out "I don't mind you're using me — uh! — ...

Bill Withers One of Today's Most Talented Singer-Songwriters

Interview by John Abbey, Blues & Soul, 26 October 1973

IN CASE you are wondering — as was I — just what has been happening to Bill Withers since he was in Britain over a ...

Bill Withers: Rainbow Theatre, London

Live Review by John Abbey, Blues & Soul, 9 November 1973

POSSIBLY BECAUSE most major soul people only make one trip over here every year or every other year, it's true to say that most of ...

Bill Withers: Making Music (Columbia PC 33704)

Review by Tom Vickers, Rolling Stone, 1 January 1976

BILL WITHERS' metier is middle-of-the-road soul. On Making Music, Withers has traded in his earlier, sparse sound for a muted lushness. The browns and deep ...

Bill Withers, Soul Singer

Profile by Vernon Gibbs, The Village Voice, 16 April 1979

SINCE NO one else has had the nerve to say it, I might as well. Bill Withers is a great soul singer. Some purists might ...

Phyllis Hyman,
 Bill Withers, Pieces Of A Dream,
 Gerald Albright: Greek Theatre,
 Los Angeles

Live Review by David Nathan, Billboard, 3 September 1988

BILLED AS A quiet storm concert (a reference to urban radio's popular mellow late-night programming), these four strong acts provided a full evening of entertainment ...

Bill Withers: Who Is He… (And What Is He To You)?

Profile and Interview by Don Waller, MOJO, August 2003

Remembered as a smooth '70s balladeer and a raw soul pioneer, Bill Withers is the music legend who opted out. Don Waller tracked him down ...

Legends of Songwriting: Bill Withers

Interview by Bill DeMain, Performing Songwriter, July 2004

A BLACK MAN wearing faded jeans and an orange turtleneck sweater sits on a stool. He's hunched over his acoustic guitar. Eyes closed, sweat glistening ...

Bill Withers: The Very Best of Bill Withers (Sony/BMG)

Review by Barney Hoskyns, Uncut, 2006

19-track mixed-bag from funky L.A.-based singer-songwriter, beloved of Dr Evil and Mini-Me. ...

Why the early '70s was the greatest period for live soul albums

Guide by Mitchell Cohen, Music Aficionado, December 2016

JAMES BROWN invented the modern live soul album with the release of Live at the Apollo in 1963, and Sam Cooke, Otis Redding, and Etta ...

The 30 best live concert albums of all time

Guide by Ian Winwood, Daily Telegraph, 22 April 2020

LAST WEEK, A STORY appeared in the New York Times that predicted that live music would not return to the world's stages until the autumn ...


back to LIBRARY