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Words About Wonder

Stevie Wonder has had much praise heaped upon him, from individuals of all walks of life, over the years. To truly appreciate the impact of Stevie Wonder on the world of music and humanity, a collection of quotes from esteemed personalities are presented below.
Herbie Hancock He is the best example of what a human being can be.
I felt so proud to be on such a landmark record (Songs in the Key of Life). There was nothing like that before, nothing.
Barack Obama Responding to a Rolling Stone interview question that asked him who his musical heroes are: If I had one, it would have to be Stevie Wonder. When I was just at that point where you start getting involved in music, Stevie Wonder had that run with Music of My Mind, Talking Book, Fulfillingness' First Finale and Innervisions, and then Songs in the Key of Life. Those are as brilliant a set of five albums as we've ever seen.

I think it's fair to say that had I not been a Stevie Wonder fan, Michelle might not have dated me. We might not have married. The fact that we agreed on Stevie was part of the essence of our courtship.
Bill Clinton Tonight we honor the prodigy who became a prophet (Honouring Stevie at the Kennedy Centre Awards 1999)
Quincy Jones He is a profoundly creative person and a profound human being too. You match those two things together you have such a giving person.
Berry Gordy He excelled in every field, it wasn't just his writing. But it was his producing that was unique, sound that was unique and his chord structure that people are still trying to figure out today.
Paul Simon Can anyone imagine what the last twenty-five years of American popular music would be without Stevie Wonder? He is the composer of his generation.
(1989 Induction of Stevie Wonder into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame)
Smokey Robinson Stevie Wonder is one of the most prolific songwriters of this millennium and many millenniums to come.
Bob Dylan If anybody can be called a genius, Stevie Wonder can be. I think it has something to do with his ear, not being able to see or whatever. I go back with him to about the early Sixties, when he was playing at the Apollo with all that Motown stuff. If nothing else, he played the harmonica incredible, I mean truly incredible. Never knew what to think of him really until he cut "Blowin' in the Wind." That really blew my mind, and I figured I'd better pay attention. I was glad when he did that Rolling Stones tour, cuz it opened up his scene to a whole new crowd of people, which I'm sure has stuck with him over the years. I love everything he does. It's hard not to. He can do gut-bucket funky stuff really country and then turn around and do modern-progressive whatever you call it. In fact, he might have invented that. He is a great mimic, can imitate anybody, doesn't take himself seriously and is a true roadhouse musician all the way, with classical overtones, and he does it all with drama and style. I'd like to hear him play with an orchestra. He should probably have his own orchestra.
(February 9, 1989 at Stevie's induction to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame)
Dave Stewart It was amazing, because everyone was just queuing up to sit down at his feet. He was like this amazing presence.
(Commenting on a party held after the 1999 Brit awards)
Babyface You are my inspiration, you are my musical guru, and you are the greatest songwriter of all time.

It’s amazing when you look at his career and the songs he has written. It's like the Beatles, but with Stevie it’s just one guy.
Eric Clapton Stevie Wonder has to be the greatest drummer of our time. After attending 1974 London concert
Elvis Costello He's the most influential musician alive. Every bad singer on American Idol tries to sound like him, and fails miserably. It would be an inspiring thing for him to be the musical laureate of America. Because he is anyway.

Stevie Wonder was a harmonica protégé making instrumental records, then he's a great singer at 13 and then he makes 'Music of the Mind' and 'Innervisions' -- it's unbelievable! These are the kind of leaps, any time you feel yourself hemmed in, you just gotta look to the best stuff and hope that you've got the inspiration to go even a little bit to where they've managed. Nobody can make a record as good as Stevie Wonder made in those days. I don't think so, anyway; nobody can make a leap like that now.
Michael Bolton If God had to choose one voice on earth in the history of mankind to speak for him, it would be the voice of Stevie Wonder.
Annie Lennox Stevie Wonder you're the king of kings

What really blows my mind is the fact that we performed with Stevie - that's much more important to me than any award (Speaking after receiving the Brit Award , 1999)
Luciano Pavarotti We listen to him, we enjoy his music because we are in front of a great, a great genius of music. Thank you for being here, thank you very much. (Speaking prior to Stevie's performance at the Children of Liberia Charity Concert, 1998)
Santana We respectfully dedicate our music to Stevie Wonder... (Extract from Liner notes of 1977 Festival Album)
Pharrell Williams Stevie Wonder was a fixture in my life as a child. His music is probably the closest thing to auditory transcendence. His brilliance for paralleling the harmony of sounds and the way that red, orange and yellow are tri-tonal - I don't know that there's anyone else that's done it as many times as he has. He's a huge genius. He's a master of that.
Mark Ronson The greatest musical moment of my life and might never be topped is that Stevie Wonder played harmonica on the intro to the album. It's probably the peak musical highlight of my life, and I'm fine if I never top it. He is my favorite musician/songwriter/singer of all time. If I stop to think of it too much that he’s playing on a record my head will explode because a single song of his can bring me to tears.
Shania Twain My dream was to be Stevie wonder's backup singer. That was my wish as a child, that’s what I wanted to be. I'd still be his back up singer if he'd take me.
John Swenson He is one of the prime reasons that the synthesizer and electronic keyboards in general became widely used in all pop music (America Writer and Journalist)
George Jackson His Clarity of purpose and his ability to inspire and extract all that’s good out of a crazy world is just amazing. (Former President of Motown Records)
Bonnie Rait Because it was Stevie Wonder, all that synthesizer stuff was really cool. He was God to me.
Coretta Scott-King I offer my heartfelt personal appreciations for your friendship as well as your luminous artistry, and radiant spirit of love you bring through all your good works.
Michael Douglas We have grown up singing his songs. In any country in any language he's a celebration. He's America's ambassador of music.
Aretha Franklin He'd Just Work those synthesizers so beautifully the songs were so right and they all had the right Groove from cut to cut.
Halle Berry It’s not easy being a black man in America. But what you've done with your gifts and your talents, have so inspired me to achieve my dreams.

It’s amazing, Stevie is not able to see with his eyes but he can see far more than anyone of us. Stevie sees with his heart. His vision is full of love promise, togetherness, peace and unity.
Marvin Gaye I hated it when he came out before me, because he had twice the energy of all of us combined. He drained our fans dry.
Anita Baker ... he has written and performed some of the most memorable music of our time. But more importantly he has been a source of inspiration as a person who cares equally about his fellow man as he does about his music.
Boy George The incredible voice more than anything, it’s a magical voice. I think that is what he would be remembered for.
Mel C
(Spice Girls)
I think Stevie Wonder was a big one. That's the only time me and Emma have been speechless. In the picture of when we met him, our mouths were just open, it was like, oh my God! It was somewhere in Italy at a big concert. (On being asked which famous person she was most pleased to meet.)
Gloria Estefan Stevie you're not only one of thr most amazing artistic treasures in our world but you're an incredible human being!
Adam Levine
(Maroon 5)
I think there's a stigma attached to Stevie Wonder, as far as him being the guy that wrote "I Just Called To Say I Love You." Being a child of the '80s--or late '80s--that's all I had really thought of him. I didn't really know he had all these classic records, and when I started listening to song like "Sir Duke," "I Wish" and "I Believe," it really just changed my whole life as a singer, songwriter and musician.

He is the all-encompassing idol. Musically he's one of my favourites in the world. As a human being he's one of the best people to walk the earth. He's just an incredible person and I really worship him for that.
Marilyn Bergman Stevie is a consummate songwriter and musician whose art and life reflect a generosity of spirit coupled with a desire for social justice and peace. He is a uniquely gifted music creator and human being and we are privileged to honor him and have so many distinguished performers on hand to celebrate him with their own versions of his timeless songs. (ASCAP President and Chairman 1994-2009)
Peter Frampton I went up to Stevie Wonder and said, 'It's been a pleasure to meet you. It's been a long time since I started listening to you. Maybe it would be nice to get together and play one day.' And he said, 'Yeah, great.' As I was walking away, he said, 'You don't play a bad bag yourself.' And I said, 'Well, you know who I learned from, don't you?' He went, 'Yeah, I know.' It was just lovely.
Elton John Let me put it this way: wherever I go in the world, I always take a copy of Songs in the Key of Life. For me, it's the best album ever made, and I'm always left in awe after I listen to it. When people in decades and centuries to come talk about the history of music, they will talk about Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Ray Charles and Stevie Wonder. He evolved into an amazing songwriter and a genuine musical force of nature.
He's so multitalented that it's hard to pinpoint exactly what it is that makes him one of the greatest ever. Nobody can sing like he does. As a keyboard player, I've played with him over the years, and he never ceases to amaze me, the stuff he comes up with. He can play anything. I think I'm a pretty good musician, but he's in a whole other league.
In the Seventies, he hit a run of albums that's unsurpassed in music history, from Talking Book to Songs in the Key of Life.
Stevie is an amazingly positive, peaceful man. When you ask him to do something, he is generous. He loves music. He loves to play. When he comes into a room, people adore him. And there aren't many artists like that. He tries to use his music to do good. His message, I think, is about love, and in the world we live in today, that message does shine through.

You are great influence on us musicians, who eat humble pie in your presence.

To me you are the king. Thank you for the music. Thank you for the love. Thank you from heaven above.
Ray Kurzweil With Stevie Wonder as our musical advisor, we set out to combine these two (electronic and acoustic) worlds of music.
Sting Thank you Stevie. You are my teacher, my guru, my inspiration, you're a higher being and I love you.
Brian McKnight I would not be what I am if it were not for Stevie Wonder
Sir Christopher Meyer Wonder's virtuosity made Elton John sound like a pub pianist (British Ambassador to the United States after witnessing Elton John and Stevie Wonder perform at the White House, 2002)
Mariah Carey Stevie Wonder is one of the most incredible singer songwriters in history and one of the most beautiful spirits in the entire world.
Paul McCartney We Love you Stevie, Baby (Braille message to Stevie on Paul's 1973 Red Rose Speedway album)

Stevie came along to the studio in LA and he listened to the track for about ten minutes and he totally got it. He just went to the mic and within 20 minutes had nailed this dynamite solo. When you listen you just think, 'How do you come up with that?' But it's just because he is a genius, that's why. (Speaking on Stevie's harmonica solo on the song 'Only Our Hearts', 2012)
Justin Timberlake You've been a tremendous influence on my life, as an artist, songwwriter and producer.
Chick Corea Stevie I consider to be one of the most important musicians who ever hit planet earth. His music contains a human rights message because it goes above any kind of religion or philosophy. It's a thing all of humanity can get behind. I consider him a guiding light.
Rev Al Sharpton He single-handedly got the whole nation to talk about Martin Luther King's birthday. When Stevie came out with that song (Happy Birthday) he changed the whole mood of America. He gave us the first federal holiday for a person of color in this country.
Eliza Doolittle Stevie Wonder is definitely my number one favourite artist, I just feel like he can’t do any wrong. He just is amazing and I would love to write a song with him or just have a lesson from him about anything. That would make my life.
Yolanda Adams He inspired me to be a better artist. There are a lot of people who do one thing but they don't do everything. This man can do everything.
Phylicia Rashad Stevie Wonder means good music. Good music all the way through life
Kanye West I’m not trying to compete with what’s out there now. I’m really trying to compete with Innervisions and Songs in the Key of Life. It sounds musically blasphemous to say something like that, but why not set that as your bar?
Leonardo DiCaprio Stevie Wonder is my favourite artist of all time and one of my country's national treasures
Michael Bolton Singing along with Stevie changed everything for me. It gave me a more flexible voice, challenged my range. That’s one of the greatest ranges in popular music, in the history of music.
Josh Groban Stevie Wonder writes these universally epic melodies that are a bit genre-less. He's genre-less. Nobody writes about love better than Stevie Wonder.
Hunter Hayes It's amazing because you look at a guy who has helped shape music, and shaped the future of music and redefined music in a lot of his own ways, and then he walks into a room and the guy is warm and friendly. He is such an ambassador for good. And his message comes across. He is one of those people who leads by example. I was so inspired.
Gene Hoglan One of my favourite things is the album Innervisions by Stevie Wonder. Because it is an amazing album from the melodic stand point. Musically it is such an incredible tale from top to bottom. The thing that I like most about it are the drums, I'm a drummer. Stevie Wonder plays the drums on this album and the drums on it are really incredible its one of my favourite drum albums of all time. I think the reason why Stevie probably plays on a lot of his own songs is that he has the inner-vision that maybe he might not be able to relate to a regular human being because I don't think Stevie Wonder is not a human being at all, I think he's a Marshan at the least. I highly suggest everybody check it out. (Gene Hoglan is a Heavy Metal Drummer)
Richie Sambora It is almost beyond words to sing with Stevie. He was the guy that I emulated when I was a boy, and he taught me how to sing. It is an honor to meet your teacher. The first thing I did was whisper in his ear, 'I’m sure you get this a lot, but you were my inspiration as a singer.'
A. R. Rahman For me, to give a platform to the next generation is my mission and this is one of the first initiatives to represent India internationally. The inspiration was Stevie Wonder