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4. Everyting Will Be Alright

However, Uptight (Everything's Alright) changed that story a bit and every year thereafter, in the sixties, Stevie hadStevie Wonder hit records. Much of this success had to do with the new song writing team of 15 year old Stevie along with Henry Cosby and Sylvia Moy. Stevie always liked to write and several things influenced his writing. I was greatly influenced by radio. Detroit had the best cross section of music, different cultures, etc.

The Uptight album showed a more personal side of Stevie. It embraced many of his influences such as the soulful moods of Sam Cooke to a cover of Bob Dylan's Blowin' in the Wind.

The single Uptight returned Stevie to the top of the US R&B chart, while placing at #3 on the pop chart. It was his first single to enter the UK singles chart, where it peaked at #14. Other singles from the albums were Nothing's to Good For My Baby and Blowin' in the Wind.

Six months later saw the release of Stevie's next album Down To Earth. The first single culled from it, being the optimistic A Place In The Sun that placed well in the top US pop and R&B charts as well as returning Stevie to the UK top 20.

At 17, Stevie met a girl named Angie and fell in love. The melody and music for I Was Made To Love Her came from that experience. Sylvia Moy wrote incredible lyrics to that song. It was a vigorously exciting track, with a compelling dance beat, an inspiring James Jamerson bass line and Stevie's racing vocals.

Stevie WonderThe single shot to #1 on the R&B chart and #2 on the pop charts. It was Stevie's first top ten UK hit where it peaked at #5. The album I Was made To Love Her was produced by Hank Cosby and released in August 1967. It was a pot-pourri of interesting sounds, appealing to a wider audience than his previous works. I was a sign of things to come in the not too distant future.

By the end of the year, Motown was ready to put out a Stevie Wonder Christmas album containing a combination of festive favourites complimented by some in-house original compositions. It was customary for Motown to release Christmas albums for its leading stars to cash in on the seasonal event. In addition it would almost annually bring out compilation of various permutations and combinations from these albums.

In 1968 Stevie graduated with honours from the Michigan School for the Blind thusStevie Wonder Graduating enabling him to now spend more time developing his music. Ted Hull his personal tutor for the last 5 years stayed on with Stevie for another year until he was 19.

In March the single Shoo-Be-Doo-Be-Doo-Da Day was released and shot to #1 on the R&B charts and top 10 in the pop charts. However as the single climbed the charts, sad news rocked the nation, news that would affect Stevie for many years to come and encourage him in the future to embark in a national crusade. Dr. Martin Luther, civil rights leader, was assisinated in Memphis, Tennessee, as he prepared to lead a march of workers protesting against unfair treatment by their employers.

By March 1968, Motown felt it was about time they put together a Greatest Hits package. The album included his hits so far in addition to the song, I'm Wondering. It was his first album to enter the UK album charts.
Stevie Wonder
With the Greatest Hits album in the charts Stevie rose to the challenge of a suggestion by Berry Gordy that he record an instrumental version of the Bacharach/David song Alfie. The project taken over by Hank Cosby as producer eventually grew into a full fledged album. To avoid confusion with Stevie's current work it was decided to release the album under the pseudonym Eivets Rednow, which is Stevie Wonder spelt backwards. On the album were 4 songs written by Stevie. He played most of the instruments including piano, drums, various keyboards and all the percussion.

The self-titled album, Eivets Rednow, never really took off, most likely because of the unknown artist name and lack of conviction on Motown's part.

Later that year Stevie heard For Once In My Life. Not knowing that it was a Jobete/Motown song he went to Motown with suggesting that he do a cover. Even though it was a ballad and I loved it as that, I felt the tune could be done in the form of rejoicing in meeting someone who needed me. I was excited and recorded it that way. It was release as a single a month before the album shipped. The single reached #2 in the US and provided Stevie with his highest UK position on the charts - #3.
Stevie Wonder
The album when released contained 2 previous singles Shoo-Be-Doo-Be-Doo-Da Day and You Met Your Match. It showed a growth in Stevie's music and his venturing into the realm of production with the tracks You Met Your Match and I Don't Know Why (I Love You). The latter track was arguably the best track on the album, a hard-edged emotional declaration of love. It was released as the next single, with My Cherie Amour on the flipside. The top title though only reached #14 in UK and #16 in the US R&B charts. However it was the B-side that attracted major attention from the radio deejays. The song did not make it onto the last album, though Stevie had written it two years previously. Stevie says that the song was personal, I wrote it when when I was sixteen after me and my sweetheart broke up. It took me thirty minutes to write and was initially titled My Marsha, but Sylvia (Moy) came up with the revised title.

The song did not conform to the standard Motown formula and hence the powers that be never felt it appropriate for release.

Now sensing a possible hit with My Cherie Amour based on public exposure, Motown flipped it to the A side, a move that proved successful. This resulted in the single reaching #4 in both in both US charts and in the UK.

Stevie WonderAs expected, an album was hastily compiled, titled My Cherie Amour and released in August 1969. It contained many standard songs such as, Light My Fire, The Shadow Of Your Smile and Hello Young Lovers, which Stevie capably handled. He matched these with four of his own compositions. Also on the album was Yeter-Me Yester-You Yesterday destined to be his next single, a song that would peak at #2 in the UK, his biggest hit there, and placing in the US top ten.

By the end of the year Stevie was invited to the White House by President Nixon to receive the Distinguished Service Award.

During the last few years, although working on songs for himself he also wrote sons for many other Motown artists, including Smokey Robinson, Marvin Gaye, The Contours and the Four Tops.