Soul icon Bill Withers passed away on Monday, March 30, aged 81 from heart complications.

The three time Grammy Award-winner and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee released a string of hits in his long and successful career, including ‘Ain’t No Sunshine’, ‘Lean On Me’, ‘Lovely Day’ and ‘Just the Two of Us’.

A statement from his family - wife Marcia Johnson and children Todd and Kori - reads: “We are devastated by the loss of our beloved, devoted husband and father. 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.”

Patrick Hinton is Mixmag's Digital Features Editor, follow him on Twitter

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