I went to see Stevie Wonder in concert a couple of years ago at the O2 in London. I was not expecting to cry all the way through it. He came on late, we were very crochety by then. Our seats were in the back row. It is a bit of a schlep to get to the O2 and a pretty crappy to get home from, as you have to get on the tube with thousands of other people and just be prepared to wait in line, and ignore any feeling of claustrophobia, or leave before the encore.
Stevie came on and I kid you not, the whole arena just lit up, he completely filled it with love. His voice was magnificent. He sung every song I asked for, and in the right order too. I sang all the way through it…really loud so he could hear me ( ha ha ha 70 rows back..I don’t think so, I did wonder the next day why I could not speak).
The reason I mention all this was that the death of his dear mother inspired him to go on tour again, and I am so glad I can now say I was in the same building as Stevie Wonder.
Today is the 5th Anniversary of her death. Her name was Lula Mae Hardaway and was born in 1930. Lula co-wrote many of her son’s songs during his teenage years including the hit singles “I Was Made to Love Her” and “Signed, Sealed, Delivered I’m Yours”. For co-writing the latter song, she was nominated for the 1970 Grammy Award for Best R&B Song and was also the subject of a 2002 biography entitled, “Blind Faith: The Miraculous Journey of Lula Hardaway, Stevie Wonder’s Mother” which I think I am going to read, as she was a remarkable woman, and I had no idea she co-wrote some of those remarkable songs….I have arranged and the choir have sung Signed Sealed Delivered. So many good songs.
SONG OF THE DAY –For Once in My Life -Stevie Wonder -THIS IS SUCH A GREAT CURRENT LIVE VERSION. Written by Miller and Murden. This is Miller’s most famous hit song and was written the night his daughter Angel was born. It is one of the most covered songs in pop history with more than 270 recorded versions.