On Friday morning, the Associated Press reported that legendary soul singer and musician Bill Withers had died at the age of 81. Best known for songs like "Lean On Me," “Lovely Day,” and “Ain’t No Sunshine,” Withers reportedly died on Monday in Los Angeles from heart complications. Withers was the winner of three Grammy awards between the '70s and '80s, all of which were for Best Rhythm & Blues Song. His music was also a constant source of sample material in hip-hop and R&B over the years (especially "Ain't No Sunshine"), with artists like 2Pac, Will Smith, Kendrick Lamar, and others using him as a foundation for their own standout tracks.
"We are devastated by the loss of our beloved, devoted husband and father," Withers' family said in a statement retrieved by the AP. "A solitary man with a heart driven to connect to the world at large, with his poetry and music, he spoke honestly to people and connected them to each other. As private a life as he lived close to intimate family and friends, his music forever belongs to the world. In this difficult time, we pray his music offers comfort and entertainment as fans hold tight to loved ones.”