From child prodigy with infectious hits to consummate craftsman of sophisticated pop-soul to boundary-breaking musical innovator and social critic, Stevie Wonder is enshrined as one of pop music’s true game-changers.
Blind virtually all his life, he was signed to Motown in 1961, and his third album, "The 12 Year Old Genius," became the label’s first chart-topper. He took on a stronger writing and producing role during the ‘60s as the hits piled up: "Uptight [Everything’s Alright]," "I Was Made to Love Her," "Signed, Sealed, Delivered I’m Yours" and so on.
The four albums he released between 1972 and 1976 — "Talking Book," "Innervisions," "Fulfillingness' First Finale" and "Songs in the Key of Life" — redefined the sonic and thematic scope of R&B. It was a creative stretch virtually unmatched in pop history, and in its wake Wonder became a less prolific and groundbreaking artist.
He turned out more hits, including the Oscar-winning "I Just Called to Say I Love You" and the Paul McCartney duet "Ebony and Ivory," and his 2005 comeback album "A Time to Love" added to a collection of Grammy Awards that numbers 22 as of 2010.
Wonder was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989.
— Richard Cromelin for the Los Angeles Times June 9, 2010