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The Best of Bill Withers: Lean on Me Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered

275 customer reviews

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Greatest Hits: Lean On Me
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Audio CD, Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered, May 30, 2000
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

17 tracks of tuneful '70s soul from one of the decade's best. Includes both the Sussex and Columbia hits: Ain't No Sunshine; Lean on Me; Use Me; The Same Love That Made Me Laugh; Lovely Day; Just the Two of Us; Grandma's Hands , and more!

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Not to be mistaken with Bill Withers's Greatest Hits or even the 1994 best-of with which it shares its name, Lean on Me nevertheless shares much with those two earlier retrospectives--notably the likes of such '70s soul-pop gems as the title track, "Ain't No Sunshine," "Lovely Day," and "Use Me." Like the earlier Lean on Me, this remastered selection includes 18 tracks, 13 of which overlap with the '94 set. Withers's oeuvre is something less than expansive: he recorded 10 albums for Sussex and Columbia between 1971 and 1985, then gracefully exited the business with three top 10 hits to his credit. The singer's warm vocals and wise lyrics have held up splendidly through the years, making him a likely candidate for periodic rediscovery. This anthology stands as the title of choice for the next wave of soul fans Withers wins over. --Steven Stolder


1. Lovely Day
2. I Want To Spend The Night
3. Let Me Be The One You Need
4. Hello Like Before
5. Tender Things
6. I Wish You Well
7. Ain't No Sunshine
8. Grandma's Hands
9. The Same Love That Made Me Laugh
10. Lean On Me
11. Harlem
12. Use Me
13. Who Is He (And What Is He To You)?
14. You Just Can't Smile It Away
15. Just The Two Of Us
16. Steppin' Right Along
17. You Try To Find A Love
18. My Imagination

Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 30, 2000)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered
  • Label: Sony
  • ASIN: B00004THKR
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (275 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #736 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

141 of 141 people found the following review helpful By guillermoj on August 24, 2003
Format: Audio CD
Bill Withers had a low key career that lasted only 14 years, in which he released some of the most beautiful music ever to grace this earth.
Although the Amazon.com reviewer incorrectly indicates that Bill only had two huge hits, "Ain't No Sunshine" and "Lean on Me", he/she must have not have done his/her due diligence as "Use Me" and "Lovely Day" also were smashes, but Bill is not about his "hits" but about his amazing ability to sing songs that are sexy, smooth, spiritual and does it in an understated manner that does not come off as generic, but serves as an example of a true original.
Listening to this amazing release (which should be the only one to buy if you are in the market as there are at least 3 out there) you get a feeling of all being well with the world. The remastering is amazing and the songs sound even more effortless than ever yet they stick with you for days.
I am amazed at not having discovered a fuller spectrum of Bill's work until now, as all the non-hits sound at catchy and lovely as the hits. Again, I have to express my surprise at how a seemingly low key performer manages to put together songs that stay with you longer than any of the "anthems" or even better known songs and/or performers.
Buy this at once if you love melody and music that is as relevant today as when it was first released. In my opinion, this greatest hits package should appeal to those who are seeking every "neo-soul" artist that puts something out there but, with some exeptions, nothing is better than the real thing.
There is not a dud in this 18-song collection and I can't remember the last time that I have experienced that.
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43 of 43 people found the following review helpful By Frederick Baptist on August 21, 2005
Format: Audio CD
This has to be the best compilation of Bill Withers' life's work that's out there. Not only has the sound been very well remastered for a great sounding cd but the choice of tracks are also very good. "Lovely Day" is what made me want to know more about the artist and "Just the Two of Us" and "Lean On Me" among many others have made me a great fan.

BW's voice is really good and how he sustains that looong note at the end of "Lovely Day" I'll never know. Just great music and great heartfelt soul from a curiously relatively unknown musician. A worthy addition to any cd collection and a lasting classic. If you are into great soul singing and well-written tracks, then this is the cd to get.
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43 of 45 people found the following review helpful By Captain Opinionated on October 28, 1999
Format: Audio CD
Bill Withers? You probably already love a lot of his songs and don't even know it yet. The funk classic "Use Me," heard in the film "American Beauty?" Bill Withers. The pretty "Lovely Day" from the Gap Soul commercial? Our man, Bill. "Lean On Me," which you've undoubtedly heard and loved countless times? Thank, Mr. Withers. "Just the Two of Us," which is so popular, Mike Myers did a take off on it in "Austin Powers: the Spy Who Shagged Me?" Courtesy, Bill W. Why more people don't realize all these great songs - as well as such lesser-known gold nuggets like "Grandma's Hands," "When I'm Kissin' My Love," and "Ain't No Sunshine" - are the work of one enormously talented R & B singer/songwriter is beyond me. If you like classic soul/R & B, you gotta add this CD to your collection.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Kevin Stanton VINE VOICE on March 13, 2006
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I have know most of these songs for a long time. But it is nice to hear them remastered and all in one place for a change!

The front and back cover art is very tastefully done! Nice photos. The liner and it's notes are really well done... nice work guys! The case itself is very nice also... somewhat typical, but a little stronger built than most crystal cases.

Now for the songs. Lovely Day, Ain't No Sunshine, The Same Love That Made Me Laugh, Use Me and Just The Two Of Us are all headliners! And wow do they sound good here, remastered!

A few suprises are 'I Want To Spend The Night', 'Let Me Be The One You Need' and 'My Imagination'. I haven't heard those in years. Once again, wonderfully remastered.

I would give this collection 10 stars, but that isn't possible. This is a fantastic collection of 60's-70's soul. Soul music that has lived well beyond those years. Very polished, heartfelt songs that have a life of their own.

I encourage anyone who likes meaninful, well-done ballads and funky soul to buy this collection... you honestly couldn't get any better.
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 26, 2001
Format: Audio CD
A comprehensive overview perhaps of Bill Withers' recording career but for my money, I'd stick to any greatest hits compilation that focusses on his sterling early 70s material. His mid to late 70s and 80s recordings pale badly by comparison. It's not his fault. The soul music scene had changed, so he had to adapt or die. You should start with Track 7 ("Ain't No Sunshine") and work your way right through Track 13 ("Who is He and What Is He To You"), then jump back to the opening track ("Lovely Day") and end on Track 6 ("I Wish You Well"), and you'd have experienced pure aural bliss. Forget about the rest if you want to avoid a let down after listening to classics and gems like "Grandma's Hands", "Lean On Me", "Harlem" and "Use Me". The earlier "Greatest Hits" compilation which stops at his late 70s releases may be preferred for this reason alone. Whichever you prefer, Bill Withers made timeless music during his heyday, so it's essential we have a "best of" compilation to remind us of his genius.
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