About the song
If you are looking for a smooth, soulful and timeless classic to enjoy with your partner, you might want to listen to “Just The Two Of Us” by Grover Washington Jr. and Bill Withers. This song expresses a deep connection between a couple who can get through anything together. It was a huge hit when it was released in 1980, but it has endured as a popular song for weddings and other romantic occasions.
But do you know the history behind this song? How did a renowned jazz saxophone player and a mighty soul singer collaborate to create this masterpiece? Here are some interesting facts about “Just The Two Of Us” that you might not know.
– The song was written by Bill Withers, Ralph MacDonald and William Salter. MacDonald and Salter were musical partners who had written an instrumental track for Grover Washington Jr.’s album Winelight (1980). MacDonald contacted Withers and asked him to write lyrics and sing on the track. Withers agreed, but he changed some of the original words to make them more poetic. He added phrases like “the crystal raindrops” and “we can make it if we try”.
– The song was produced by Ralph MacDonald, who was also a percussionist who played on many of Washington’s tracks. MacDonald was friends with Withers and made the connection. When Withers went in to record his vocals, it was the first time he met Washington. They were rarely together when they recorded the song, and they never got to know each other very well. Washington died of a heart attack in 1999 at age 56.
– The song reached number 2 on the US Billboard Hot 100, staying there for three weeks. It was Washington’s only Top 40 hit. The song also won a Grammy Award for Best R&B Song in 1982.
– The song has been covered by many artists, including Will Smith, who did a rap version on his 1997 album Big Willie Style, turning it into a song about a father and son. His son Trey appeared in the video. This version was also used in the 1999 movie Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me, where Dr. Evil (Mike Myers) sings it with lyrics about his love for Mini-Me (Verne Troyer).
– The song is one of the most sampled songs in hip hop history, appearing in songs by Eminem, Tupac Shakur, Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Nas, Kanye West, Kendrick Lamar and many others.
As you can see, “Just The Two Of Us” is more than just a romantic song. It is a musical legacy that spans genres, generations and cultures. It is a testament to the power of collaboration and creativity. And it is a reminder that sometimes, all we need is each other.