Still Bill – Withers at 70
Withers says with a chuckle, that he doesn’t have a problem being considered a “sellout.” And he’s dead serious. He continues with an explanation that being in the business of selling records, there’s not a better word he’d like for people to use to describe his results. In the context of this conversation, which viewers are witnessing, he prefers the term, “subservient”.
In this presentation from Docuramafilms (available on DVD, digital, and VOD on January 25), Still Bill, singer-songwriter Bill Withers makes it clear early on that he has always and will continue to be true to himself. He became successful without the assistance of would-be advisors that he calls, “blacksperts”. He once chose an appearance on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson over returning to his day job. This self-reliant man stayed the course and became a wildly popular artist with classics like, “Ain’t No Sunshine”, “Lean on Me,” “Grandma’s Hands,” and “Just the Two of Us.” Then suddenly he dropped out. For twenty-five years he’s enjoyed being a family man.
Film from over three hundred hours of interviews and conversations with a variety of collaborators, hometown friends (Slab Fork, WV), journalists, and musicians (Sting) were edited to produce this deeply moving portrait of a man who would not play the role others suggested and who failed miserably at conforming to stereotypes just to gain favor. Still Bill opened to rave reviews in theaters in 2010 and now can be seen in the comfort of your home.
Special features include covers of some of Withers’ classics by Jim James and Corey Glover along with clips from recent concert appearances by Withers himself. Tell me it’s great and I’ll say, “I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know…”