Tuesday, June 23, 2009


Every year when the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame announces their inductees, I complain pretty loudly about The Stooges getting stiffed. But I also have a beef with them about Bill Withers not getting in. He is truly one of the greats.

He wasn't part of a big "scene" like Motown, Philadelphia International, Stax (even though Booker T. Jones produced his debut), and his career as a hitmaker didn't last super long. Unlike many of his peers, when the music industry seemed to lose interest in him, he was content to go away. That's probably because he was a bit older when he started his musical career: he had spent nine years in the Navy by then. He makes tons of money on his royalties, and doesn't need to stick around if he doesn't feel like it. He also hates interviews. If you watch the interview included on the "dualdisc" reissue of his classic debut, Just As I Am, you'll see that. Somehow, though, the directors of the upcoming film Still Bill spent LOTS of time with him and this film is the result. There are no screenings in my area, but I can't wait to see it.

So, anyway, do yourself a favor: get a copy of Just As I Am, Still Bill and Live At Carnegie Hall. You will thank me.

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