Stevie Wonder was born May 13, 1950, one week after my momma. I was raised on Stevie. His vinyl was a mainstay in our household and I spent many hours in the basement listening to him, not always understanding what he was saying, but feeling something deep and meaningful nonetheless.
During the holidays, I used to play his Christmas album religiously. I was a lonely teardrop (only child) so the song "One Little Christmas Tree" was my jam. Choked me up every time. :)
When I was in grammar school, eighth grade to be exact, I distinctly remember listening to Journey through the Secret Life of Plants. The song "Black Orchid" haunted me in such a way that I used to play it over and over, crying, because it reassured me that black was amazingly beautiful, special and kind. I imagined that my entire graduating class sang it together at our commencement ceremony (yes, I'm a cornball). To this day, I zone sometimes zone out to Stevie just to clear my head. I could listen to him for days.
The timeless classic album, Songs in the Key of Life STAYS on my Ipod, and through the years, I've collected just about all of his offerings. The beauty of Stevie Wonder is somewhat indescribable. How do you define a man who has contributed and dedicated so much love to his craft? Have you ever checked his resume? It's one thing for him to create crown jewels for himself, but he has laced some of our favorite classic artists with unforgettable hits. He co-wrote or wrote "Tears of a Clown" with Smokey Robinson, "Perfect Angel" for Minnie Riperton, "Tell Me Something Good" for Rufus and Chaka Khan , "I Can't Help It" for Michael Jackson, and produced "Try Jah Love" for Third World (just to name a few). He loved Syreeta Wright so much that he did an entire album for her, titled Stevie Wonder presents Syreeta Wright! Any Stevie purist should own it. You would be amazed at the number of songs we love and cherish that were touched by the genius of this man.
People who know me really well, understand and share my appreciation for Stevie's music. I didn't dig in the crates too deeply, but in honor of his birthday, I share with you some of my favorites. Indulge.......
Ummmmmmm.....I may have gotten a little carried away, but you understand! LOL!!!!