CNN has an interesting piece about music and the inauguration, which is set for Monday. The show should be pretty good:
This year’s festivities include a Kids’ Inaugural Concert on Saturday and two official balls on Monday night. Performers for those events include Katy Perry, Brad Paisley, Alicia Keys, Marc Anthony, Stevie Wonder and Smokey Robinson — a mix of pop, country, R & B, Latin, rock and old-school hitmakers. (Continue Reading…)
The Detroit Metro Times lists more than 100 top songs from in and around the city. Here are its top ten:
Of course, great Detroit area acts such as Gladys Knight & the Pips, The Temptations, Eminem and Bob Seeger and the Silver Bullet Band are represented on the long and interesting list.
Stevie Wonder needs no introduction. His bio may not be well known by all but his most ardent fans, however. Here is how the version at Encyclopedia Britannica starts:
Stevie Wonder, original name Steveland Judkins or Steveland Morris (born May 13, 1950, Saginaw, Mich., U.S.), American singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist, a child prodigy who developed into one of the most creative musical figures of the late 20th century.
Blind from birth and raised in inner-city Detroit, he was a skilled musician by age eight. Renamed Little Stevie Wonder by Berry Gordy, Jr., the president of Motown Records—to whom he was introduced by Ronnie White, a member of the Miracles—Wonder made his recording debut at age 12. The soulful quality of his high-pitched singing and the frantic harmonica playing that characterized his early recordings were evident in his first hit single, “Fingertips (Part 2),” recorded during a show at Chicago’s Regal Theatre in 1963. But Wonder was much more than a freakish prepubescent imitation of Ray Charles, as audiences discovered when he demonstrated his prowess with piano, organ, harmonica, and drums. By 1964 he was no longer described as “Little,” and two years later his fervent delivery of the pounding soul of “Uptight (Everything’s Alright),” which he also had written, suggested the emergence of both an unusually compelling performer and a composer to rival Motown’s stable of skilled songwriters. (He had already cowritten, with Smokey Robinson, “The Tears of a Clown.”) Continue Reading…
The site has a news item today that reports the American Pop Music Hall of Fame is seeking input from the public on which group or performer should be in the inaugural class. The story the item is based on has a link to the entire list of candidates.
Paul Anka, The Beach Boys, the Beatles, the Bee Gees, Tony Bennett, Chuck Berry, Pat Boone, the Carpenters, Johnny Cash, Ray Charles, Chubby Checker, the Dave Clark Five, Nat King Cole, Perry Como, Bobby Darin, Neil Diamond, Bob Dylan, the Everly Brothers, the Four Seasons, Connie Francis, Elton John, Dean Martin, Johnny Mathis, the Monkees, Ricky Nelson, Roy Orbison, Patti Page, Les Paul & Mary Ford, the Platters, Elvis Presley, Simon & Garfunkel, Frank Sinatra, Smokey & Miracles, The Supremes, Three Dog Night, Bobby Vinton, Dionne Warwick, Andy Williams, Hank Williams and Stevie Wonder.
I wanted to feature one of the acts on the site in addition to the news item. So I took a pen, closed my eyes and pointed to the screen. The Everly Brothers was the closest.
Professor Jam’s take on the top ten songs of 1973, from a list of 100. I’m not sure of the criteria he used.
Roberta Flack: Killing Me Softly Carly Simon: You’re So Vain Diana Ross: Touch Me in the Morning The Carpenters: Sing Stevie Wonder: You are the Sunshine of My Life Gladys Knight & the Pips: Midnight Train to Georgia Elton John: Daniel Temptations: Papa Was a Rolling Stone Paul McCartney and Wings: My Love The Carpenters: Yesterday Once More