Covid-19 is ravaging the music world
( CNN) A dispiriting couple of weeks in the lives of music followers have now climaxed with the death of Bill Withers, whose lean, leathery-tough vocals on such dad classics as“Ain’t No Sunshine, ” “Use Me, ” “Just the Two of Us” and “Lean on Me” were profoundly woven into the soundtracks of several generations’ lives.
Withers died Monday
at 81 of what his family has described as “heart complications.” His death has not been linked to the Covid-1 9 virus. But his loss, coming at about the same time that “Lean on Me” has resurfaced as a world-wide chant of collective will during the course of its coronavirus pandemic , nonetheless feels like another in an once apparently relentless succession of recent person blows to the music world.
Among the casualties: Adam Schlesinger
, Fountains of Wayne founding member, lead vocalist and songwriter; Joe Diffie
, Grammy-winning country-music singer; Alan Merrill
, best known for writing Joan Jett’s 1980 s anthem, “I Love Rock and Roll; ” Manu Dibango
, a Cameroon saxophonist whose riffs on the smack 1972 dance theme, “Soul Makossa, ” cured spearhead worldwide interest in African pop; and Aurlus Mabelle
, the Congolese song-and-dance man dubbed king of the eclectic merger of pitch-black dad genres known as “soukous.”