I remember riding in the Torino, my mom’s best friend at the wheel, the women in the front all cigarettes and Afros, the kids in the back all Afro puffs and yarn-tied pigtails. Car door locks looked like silver golf tees, asking the cat at Esso for directions was the GPS of the day and spinning the radio dial to WOL introduced some DC babies to the wonders of Stevie.
The man born Stevland Hardaway Judkins has etched beautiful memories in the hearts of generations of music fans; created an anthem for and fueled the movement toward federal acknowldegement of MLK’s birth; been lovingly parodied by Eddie Murphy and is celebrated yearly at Wonder-Full, a roving musical tribute to Mr. Stevie Wonder. Mix masters DJ Spinna and Bobbito Garcia spin only music either recorded or written (for example Rufus’ Tell Me Something Good) by Stevie, in a hotly anticipated event with the spirit-raising intensity of a Southern tent revival.
Happily, this year’s soiree was within walking distance of my home at Clinton Hill’s BK Studios. I went with last week my ace, writer Julia Chance as she covered the scene for WNYC. She documented with photos, gathered stories and still managed to get her dance on. I know I did. By 3am I was a hot mess, and I mean that in the best possible way.
Check out Julia’s report here.