Local Wire

Stevie Wonder

It's an interesting time for soul music czar Stevie Wonder to be out and about on a rare U.S. tour. Because, aside from some concealed gems here and there — such as Anthony Hamilton and Amp Fiddler — soul music has been a stagnating beast for the past five years. Possibly coincidentally or maybe out of need, Wonder ended his 10-year sabbatical from the recording studio and released A Time to Love in 2005. The album is a mixed bag of infectious R&B and contemporary soul, but more importantly, it came at a time when lame, synth-driven R&B with lyrics like "I wanna see you nekkid, baby boo" continued to befoul the airwaves and overstuff CD bins at big-box record stores. But the underappreciated release wasn't enough, because kids are still more likely to favor number one perv R. Kelly's "art" over compositions created by soul music's emissary (quel dommage, as the French would say). However, the young bucks still have a chance to invest in their soul and the good of humankind. All they gotta do is fork over the dollar bills to see Wonderlove perform his life-changing music.
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Steve Jansen
Contact: Steve Jansen