OMA Life Changer: Stevie Wonder

One Man Academy Life Changer

Stevie Wonder

Featured songs from this post: Spotify
If you only listen to one song: "Superwoman"

Random thoughts, in no particular order.

A timeline of me and the piano

  • I'm sort of interested in the piano and not very good at it
  • I briefly take piano lessons, after years of hesitation
  • I hate piano lessons and, by extension, the piano
  • I stop playing for a decade
  • I start having dreams about pianos
  • I buy a full-sized keyboard, the Stevie Wonder anthology, and began re-teaching myself to play.

In that way, if no other, Stevie Wonder changed the trajectory of my life immensely. My second chance with the piano has changed how I listen to music, how I spend my time, and how I relate to the people around me.

But he's maybe too good??

I find myself not playing too much Stevie, these days... it's hard. Not emotionally hard, the music is too hard. He's too good. I could "play" it, but I can't actually play it, you know? It just sounds like I'm doing something terrible to something I love. And so much of the magic of Stevie is in his voice and his playing.

I don't listen too much, these days, either. Back when I bought music and stored it on my phone, I was sure to always have his classic five albums on me at all times:

  • Music of My Mind
  • Talking Book
  • Innervisions
  • Fulfillingness’ First Finale
  • Songs in the Key of Life

At some point I started streaming music and rebuilding my "library", whatever that means when you have almost the entirety of western music's catalogue at your thumbtips at all times... and I just didn't rush to "add" them.

And at some point I started collecting LPs, to put the labor of love back into my music listening, and I haven't picked up any of those albums (yet).

I once got into a spirited discussion with a friend about whether we'd want a good love song written about us, or a good scorn song. My friend, and our bartender, said they'd prefer a scorn song, because love songs are always so cheesy. I skillfully countered that "I Believe (When I Fall in Love It Will Be Forever)" is maybe one of the best songs ever written.

I have a friend who really liked Stevie Wonder. In fact, a lot of my favorite people like Stevie Wonder. I feel good about that.

Apologies if your favorite Stevie song isn't on the playlist. Or if there's a song that should clearly be on the playlist that isn't. There are a lot of songs that could go on the playlist; these weren't necessarily my favorite 18 tracks, just the ones I wanted on this particular playlist.