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Summer highlight #1: Stevie Wonder

Prior to Monday night, I’d seen Stevie Wonder live once. My mom, sister and I were having lunch at Roscoe’s after visiting LACMA when my sister noticed him sitting on the other side of the restaurant. I didn’t get a good luck until he walked out with his entourage. My mouth dropped, I could feel his greatness (or maybe it was the waffles?) as he walked a foot away from my table. As soon as I got the chance, I gushed about my brush with Stevie to all my friends who love his music. They were jealous.

That sense of amazement I felt five years ago made a comeback when Stevie Wonder came out on the Hollywood Bowl stage escorted by his daughter, Aisha and two sons. He proceeded to perform an incredible show. I can’t write a review. If I tried, it would

If I tried to write a review for Stevie Wonder’s show at the Hollywood Bowl on Monday, it would go something like this:

OMG!!! It was so awesome!!! OMG!!! I can die now! In fact, I almost died of sheer euphoria during “Sir Duke”!!! OMG!!! Stevieeeeeeee!!!

I’ll spare you the gushing and swooning in favor of pictures and video after the jump. For an actual review, check the LA Times.

Our seats were in Section S. That’s one row from the top benches. We were seated next to a loud couple. The woman kept shouting out her love for Stevie Wonder and singing along loudly and badly to all his hits. The man next to her kept whistling two or three times after each song. It was LOUD and really high pitched so it hurt my ears. Still, even their bickering during “If It’s Magic” — when everyone else was quiet trying to listen to Stevie and the harp — couldn’t ruin how wonderful and lucky I felt to watch a music legend live.

Tons of wonderful musicians accompanied Stevie, including a orchestra and a few of his children. He sang hits from the ’70s, like my personal favorite “Sir Duke.” (Sidenote: I really need to get back in the habit of making sure that’s the first song that’s played on January 1 each year. There were a couple of years where friends did this and those years were quite wonderful.) He also performed a new song from one of two to-be-released albums.

The beautiful thing about the show was that Stevie didn’t just perform his hits. He engaged the audience, made jokes, talked about Obama, and discussed the motivation for the show at the Hollywood Bowl (his mother’s death in 2006).

The concert, called A Wonder’s Summer Night, was also a bit of a family event. Stevie’s daughter Aisha, in the grey dress in the first photo, was on the stage the whole time as a back up singer and then during her solo, “I’m Going to Laugh You Outta My Life.” After her solo, Stevie sang the very appropriate “Isn’t She Lovely?” It was sweet to see him sing the song he wrote for his daughter when she was just a baby as she stood beside him. If that was my dad, I wouldn’t have been able to hold in the tears. Another sang a little bit of “Ribbon in the Sky” with him. Finally, Stevie’s six-year old son, Kailand, played drums during the last few songs.

OMG!!! It was awesome!!! Stevie!!!

I promised you videos:

“Keep Fooling Yourself Baby Girl” (the new song)

Aisha Morris, “I’m Gonna Laugh You Outta of My Life”

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8 thoughts on “Summer highlight #1: Stevie Wonder

  1. Oh man, I tried to pretend this show didn’t exist simply because I don’t live in LA anymore and soooo woulda been there if I could. It sounds like it was so much fun! Did he play “Living in the City”? “Higher Ground”? I Believe (When I Fall in Love It Will Be Forever)”?? I can only imagine how amazing “Sir Duke” was.

    Damn, I miss summers at the Bowl. At least I get to see Feist there next weekend. But she’s still no Stevie.

  2. I had tickets for the absolute last row in the Bowl. Backs up against the bushes. After we ate our Bowl dinner of Trader Joe’s wraps, spinach cranberry salad and drank our wine and beer we moved down to the boxes. We got to sit in the first row of boxes til “Superstition’ when the peeps with the tix came. Then we were in the second to last row of boxes til the end. We are a sneaky pair.
    I liked the, just used to acts like him to do more medleys or ‘remixes’ of his standards to give them new life. He pretty much played his songs just like we are all use to hearing them, which some may like that way. I am spoiled by Prince and U2 who tweak out and mix up their songs in the live setting.

  3. “I could feel his greatness (or maybe it was the waffles?)” My favorite quote of the week. I always feel very uneasy about what to do next to people we admire. My wife met Carlos Santana recently and she tells me that she turned all colors. cool.

  4. Lucky! Did he sing “Knocks me off my feet” from Songs in the Key of Life? I love that song! My husband’s song is “I wish”…when he was a nappy-headed little boy. 🙂

  5. You must be on Vacation because I haven’t seen a new post since this last one on July 12th.

    I am daily reader of your Blog and I enjoy it very much. I hope that you are having fun and enjoying yourself at this time and that evertything is fine with you and your family.

    I look forward to reading on your new adventures:)

    Besitos,

    Chely

  6. Momo says:

    I’m with Chely on this one, except, there was no vacation warning! I’d appreciate a heads up. Every time I’ve checked, I’ve been disappointed (and frankly, a little pissed)… j/k 😉 Hope you are well and that we hear from you soon.

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