Music

Chicago native stuns the internet with his soulful cover of Bill Withers’ “Ain’t No Sunshine”

November 23rd, 2020

Every song tells a story, but each person tells that same story differently.

This particular musician brought back an already emotional ballad and gave it a powerful yet soothing quality that millions of people loved.

With hundreds of renditions of this song, one particular version appealed to the many.

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YouTube Screenshot Source: YouTube Screenshot

People instantly became connected to the soulful tune of Bill Withers’ “Ain’t No Sunshine.”

In fact, the song was one of the songs that paved the way for the songwriter’s success back in 1971. The breakthrough hit has captivated millions, and it is one of the most unforgettable tunes that he ever made.

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Leaving the song as his great legacy, talented musicians began to sing this song as a way of giving tribute to the late artist and sharing their unique takes on it.

A rendition of the song made by Shawn James attracted a lot of attention on social media and there are plenty of great reasons why.

This singer has a way of setting the right mood for every song he touches.

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YouTube Screenshot Source: YouTube Screenshot

First, let’s take a quick look at who James is as a musician.

James is clearly a talented musician and he has proven himself many times with his soulful ballads. He started off singing in gospel choirs and training in classical and opera music, letting him explore important fundamentals by weaving emotions into his music.

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As time went by, James became a musician who blends and experiments with genres, particularly with blues, folk, R&B and soul.

He described his style as eclectic, as his music is inspired by singers from different genres. That list includes R&B musician, Bill Withers.

The video shows James being showered with a gentle ray of light as he sings Withers’ ballad.

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YouTube Screenshot Source: YouTube Screenshot

The room’s ambiance already hints that this song is not something light and happy.

James started with rhythmic guitar picking, giving the original tune some dynamic improvisation. As soon as he starts singing, it’s clear his voice packs quite a punch—that power translates into something more relaxing rather than energizing.

The calm front comes with the melancholic story of a man describing the dark, colorless days when his woman is gone away from him.

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James emphasizes the crushing sadness of the song with his skillful vocal manipulations.

James expresses the song masterfully, giving color to the lyrics and melodies with complicated vocal riffs, breaks and powerful growls.

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YouTube Screenshot Source: YouTube Screenshot

Nearing the end of the song, he hums with his falsetto, bellowing with sorrow as he sits alone in the room.

With his final strum, the video fades to black, perfectly giving his cover a well-deserved curtain fall.

After seeing this performance, it’s clear James deserves more recognition than he has right now!

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YouTube Screenshot Source: YouTube Screenshot

This video was one of James’ greatest covers, garnering him more than 20 million views.

Despite the attention he’s earned online from all of this, James and his talents remain underrated.

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YouTube Screenshot Source: YouTube Screenshot

Even so, he continues to pursue his art by working on his own songs, bringing people a collection of his most powerful ballads that he birthed from his passionate soul as a musician.

Hopefully, this video will only be the first of many and we’ll keep seeing more and more great performances from James in the future!

Be sure to watch the whole thing in the link below:

Please SHARE this with your friends and family.

Source: YouTube/Shawn James

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