Chart Beat

'Lean On Me,' 'Use Me,' 'Just the Two of Us' & More: Bill Withers' Biggest Billboard Hits

The late legend topped the Hot 100 with "Lean on Me."

Bill Withers stands as one of R&B/soul music's most revered singer-songwriters, and over the course of his career, he forged an impressive resumé on Billboard's charts.

The three-time Grammy Award winner and Rock and Roll Hall of Famer died Monday (March 30) in Los Angeles from heart complications. He was 81 years old. News of his passing was announced on Friday (April 3).

Withers tallied 13 entries on the Billboard Hot 100, between 1971 and 1984, including his iconic friendship anthem "Lean on Me," which spent three weeks at No. 1 in 1972. The song has earned 193.7 million on-demand U.S. streams and sold 1.4 million downloads since the inception of Nielsen Music/MRC Data in 1991.

"Lean on Me" has been covered numerous times, and Club Nouveau's 1987 version spent two weeks at No. 1 on the Hot 100, making the Withers-penned composition one of nine to have led the list via different acts.

Subsequently, Sheryl Crow, Kid Rock and Keith Urban's cover of "Lean on Me" hit No. 47 in 2010, Glee Cast's reached No. 50 in 2009 and Kirk Franklin's version, featuring Mary J. Blige, Bono, R. Kelly, Crystal Lewis & The Family, peaked at No. 79 in 1998.

Withers first hit the Hot 100 in 1971 with "Ain't No Sunshine," a track that has also seen its fair share of covers, including Kris Allen's version (No. 37, 2009). Withers' original peaked at No. 3 and ushered in three more top 10s for him: Along with "Lean on Me," he reached the region with "Use Me" (No. 2, 1972) and "Just the Two of Us," with Grover Washington, Jr. (No. 2, 1981).

Here is a look at Withers' biggest hits on the Hot 100:

Rank, Title, Peak Position, Peak Year
1. "Just the Two of Us," Grover Washington, Jr., with Withers, No. 2, 1981
2. "Lean on Me," No. 1 (three weeks), 1972
3. "Ain't No Sunshine," No. 3, 1971
4. "Use Me," No. 2, 1972
5. "Kissing My Love," No. 31, 1973

Withers' history on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart is even more robust, as he tallied 22 entries on the chart between 1971 and 1985; six reached the top 10, including the No. 1 "Lean On Me."

On the all-genre Billboard 200 albums chart, Withers notched 12 entries during his lifetime, including 1972's No. 4-peaking Still Bill, his sophomore LP featuring "Lean on Me" and "Use Me." In the Nielsen/MRC era, the set has earned 383,000 equivalent album units and its songs have logged 180.1 million on-demand audio streams.

On the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart, Still Bill brought Withers to No. 1, as it spent six weeks on top in 1972.

Here is a ranking of Withers' biggest hits on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs:

Rank, Title, Peak Position, Peak Year
1. "Lean on Me," No. 1 peak (one week), 1972
2. "Use Me," No. 2, 1972
3. "Just the Two of Us," Grover Washington, Jr., with Withers, No. 3, 1981
4. "Ain't No Sunshine," No. 6, 1971
5. "Lovely Day," No. 6, 1978
6. "The Same Love That Made Me Laugh," No. 10, 1974
7. "Make Love to Your Mind," No. 10, 1976
8. "Heartbreak Road," No. 13, 1975
9. "You," No. 15, 1974
10. "Kissing My Love," No. 12, 1973

Bill Withers' Biggest Billboard Hits on the Hot 100 and Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs charts are based on actual performance on the weekly Hot 100 and Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs charts, respectively, through the April 4, 2020, rankings. Songs are ranked based on an inverse point system, with weeks at No. 1 earning the greatest value and weeks at lower ranks earning lesser values. Due to changes in chart methodology over the years, certain eras are weighted to account for different chart turnover rates over various periods.