Stevie Wonder

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Wonder, Stevie,

1950–, American singer, songwriter, and instrumentalist, b. Saginaw, Mich., as Steveland Hardaway Judkins (changed to Steveland Hardaway Morris, 1961). Blind from birth, he played the piano at seven and the drums and harmonica at nine, and as a boy sang in a church choir. He was discovered in 1961, signed by Motown Records, and made his debut (1962) as "Little Stevie Wonder." He had his first number-one hit, "Fingertips (Part 2)" in 1963. A prodigiously talented musician and songwriter and a superb arranger and producer, Wonder was a pioneer in the use of synthesizers. His music fuses pop, rock, rhythm and blues, and soul with such other genres as gospel, jazz, and reggae. Among his hits are "My Cherie Amour" (1969), "Signed, Sealed, Delivered" (1970), "Superstition" (1972), "You Are the Sunshine of My Life" (1973), "Living for the City" (1973), and "I Just Called to Say I Love You" (1984, Academy Award). He also has cowritten, collaborated, and recorded with many of the major pop stars of his era.


See biographies by J. Swenson (1986), M. E. Horn (1996), and M. Beyer (2002); J. E. Perone, The Sound of Stevie Wonder: His Words and Music (2006).

Wonder, Stevie (b. Steveland Judkins)

(1950–  ) musician; born in Saginaw, Mich. A premature baby, he was blinded by receiving too much oxygen in the incubator. He began playing the harmonica at an early age and was signed to a long-term contract with Motown Records in 1960. In 1963 he released his first album, Little Stevie Wonder: The 12 Year Old Genius, and its single release "Fingertips - Pt. 2," became his first million seller. During the 1960s, while attending the Michigan School for the Blind, he had numerous hit records in the classic Motown rhythm-and-blues style. In 1971, upon his 21st birthday, he renegotiated his contract and gained full artistic control over his work. Throughout the 1970s, he became proficient in the use of synthesizers and electronic keyboards and he released a series of innovative, commercially successful albums featuring a fusion of progressive rock and soul, biting social commentary, and sentimental ballads. In 1976, he signed a contract with Motown for $13 million, the largest negotiated in recording history at that date. In the 1980s and 1990s, he was increasingly engaged in children's and civil rights causes, and he led the campaign to make Martin Luther King's birthday a national holiday. He was inducted into the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame in 1989.
References in periodicals archive ?
Wonder, who has received more than two-dozen Grammy Awards, has produced a string of hits over a long career that began when he was a youngster who performed as Little Stevie Wonder. His classic hits include You Are the Sunshine of My Life and Living for the City.
But in the case of Stevie Wonder, hands down, unbelievable music virtuosity."
One big difference is instead of using the Great American Songbook as their launching pad, instead they explore The Beatles, Stevie Wonder, Bob Marley, Jimi Hendrix, James Taylor, and Cream from a jazz viewpoint.
He is really a talented musician who reminds us of how Barry White romanced us, of how George Benson still gets us every time with his scat guitar, of the dynamic piano playing and harmonic voice of Stevie Wonder and how Louis Armstrong is the king of the trumpet.
Captioning a photo collage, she wrote, "Had a ball and was honored to be a part of Stevie Wonder's wedding.
STEVIE Wonder led the A-list guests flying in for golf champ Rory McIlroy's PS200,000 wedding at a castle in Ireland yesterday.
The film's world premiere was extra special for Egerton because it was where he met ( Stevie Wonder for the first time.
Stevie Wonder and Pharrell Williams feature on the song California Roll alongside which veteran rapper?
STEVIE WONDER: AN ALL-STAR GRAMMY SALUTE (Channel 5, tonight, 10pm) STEVIE Wonder turned 65 this month.
STEVIE Wonder turned 65 this month, but after we've all joined in a rousing version of his own hit, Happy Birthday, we hope he won't be too insulted if some music lovers admit they thought he was actually a little older than that.
NEW YORK -- Willie Nelson, Usher and Coldplay's Chris Martin will pay tribute to Stevie Wonder at a concert next month.