Stevie Wonder Album Reviews
Stevie Wonder is one of the most outrageously talented figures to emerge from the popular music era. His first song to hit number one was recorded when he was 12 years old, and he continued to have hits through the 1960s as a teenager, as part of Motown.
In 1971, at the age of 21, he wrested control of his career from Motown, and with Where I’m Coming From began a series of acclaimed albums where he produced, wrote, and often played the bulk of the instruments. While Wonder’s often associated with keyboard instruments, he’s also a virtuoso harmonica player and a distinctive drummer. His seventies albums were often daring sonically, due to his collaboration with engineers Robert Margouleff and Malcolm Cecil, who allowed him to access newly developed synthesizer technology. While his lyrics were never his strong point, his increasing interest in social issues helped to give his music more depth.
Despite pushing artistic boundaries, Wonder succeeded commercially and also dominated the Grammy awards during the mid seventies, with his three masterpieces from the period, Innervisions, Fullfillingness‘ Last Finale, and Songs in the Key of Life, all justifiably receiving recognition as album of the year. This was an amazing achievement, as Wonder also had to deal with a serious car crash just after Innervisions was released, while his entourage forced him to stop his collaboration with Margouleff and Cecil before 1976’s Songs in the Key of Life.
On this page I’ve only covered his peak era, between 1971 and 1982. I’ve also included his two 1970s collaborations with Syreeta Wright, of which Stevie Wonder Presents: Syreeta is very strong and well worth discovering.
Ten Favourite Stevie Wonder Songs
I Believe (When I Fall In Love It Will Be Forever)
Livin’ For The City
It Ain’t No Use
My Cherie Amour