Stevie Wonder Leaves Motown, Issues New Music

Stevie Wonder is healthy again — and has dropped new music for the first time since his 2019 health crisis.

After 57 years on Motown, Stevie has left the label — and released a pair of new tunes under a new banner.

Yesterday he launched So What’s the Fuss Music, a partnership with Republic Records — whose artists include A-listers such as Taylor Swift, Ariana Grande and Post Malone. Clearly, Stevie likes being under the same roof with these hot contemporary names. In a Zoom conference with reporters, he explained, “Just based on where I was and what they’re doing, I thought it would be a good fit… Even if I’ve left Motown, I never leave Motown… That’s Detroit.”

The rhythmic ballad “Where Is Our Love Song,” a collaboration with Gary Clark Junior, is built on a melody Stevie worked on in the late 1960s. But he says in this turbulent time, “came all the confusion and all the hate and all the east versus west, left versus right. It’s just a heartbreak… This year, I wrote the lyric” — with references to “urban blood stained streets,” “war-torn countries” and “a prayer for peace.” Proceeds from “Where Is Our Love Song” will go to the charity Feeding America.

The hip-hop-infused “Can’t Put It in the Hands of Fate,” with Busta Rhymes, Rapsody, Cordae and Chika, was written a few years ago, with a relationship theme. He went back to it off, again inspired by the events of the day and young people, who in his words are declaring: “This stuff here is unacceptable. We cannot be a united people of this nation, united people of this world, and still have this craziness.”

Stevie says the new label was named for his 2005 collaboration with Prince. These two songs might included on an upcoming EP with a collection of guest artists. He’s also planning a full-length album.

An outspoken critic of the Trump administration, Stevie ended the press conference with a simple wish: “I want for there to be a time when we all can go to the funeral of hate.”

The best news of all, he says he “feels great” after last December’s kidney transplant. “I’m going from being 70 to being 40… I feel about 40 now. I thank everyone for their prayers and their love, and I’m feeling great.”

 

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