Duh. That was the response heard around the Valley when news broke that MGM had actually signed Stevie Wonder for 5 dates at Park Theater– because it currently ought to have happened.
Wonder is an apparent candidate for such a reservation due to the fact that of numerous authentic– the most essential being his songbook, one of the most cherished and revered in the history of music. Which is likely a reason his Park Theater engagement is called The Stevie Wonder Tune Celebration: An Event of Life, Love & & Music.
As such, picking his setlist each night will be swarming with difficult calls. However exactly what’s more appealing is the lone thing he has said about the program’s idea– that he desires people to bring the Stevie music and mementos that remind them of special experiences in their lives. “They can explain them to me as I do the song. It will be really interactive: BYLP– bring your LP.”
Fascinating, but what’s that going to look like? Will we be hurrying some crowd mic, ring-worn copies of Talking Book in hand, telling Stevie about the very first time we heard “Superstition”? Or will we be recording these stories in some sort of personal booth ahead of the efficiency, to be played onscreen later with their matching songs?
Maybe he has already ditched that concept. If you’ve ever seen him begin a song in show then all of a sudden stop to play another, you understand he can be capricious. Which is to state anything’s possible with that guy. Which is to also state he might be sticking with this. And if so, who wouldn’t imagine what they would do if given the opportunity to share an anecdote– a real fan-to-hero moment?
I understand I’ve already planned amongst my modest stack of Stevie records. The obvious choice: Songs in the Secret of Life, the album Stevie offers the most setlist love. I would tell him it means a lot to me since it’s the very first vinyl record of his I ever purchased, and it was released the year of my birth (Google it, meddlesome). Or, maybe I opt to bring Fulfillingness’ First Finale, and speak about how I rescued the unloved copy at the Broadacres Market one lovely Sunday afternoon– and possibly make the case that Stevie must dust off that album’s “They Will not Go When I Go.”
Or, I could play the wild card and bring my soundtrack for The Female in Red. Stereogum when ranked it as the worst Stevie Marvel album of perpetuity, and I will not challenge that. However it happens to have my favorite Stevie song of perpetuity: “Love Light in Flight.” I loved dancing to it as an 8-year-old boy when it began the radio or MTV, and I still move about when it’s spun on my turntable or Spotify. I would leap at the opportunity to tell him that.
Sadly, Stevie hasn’t played it in 11 years. However perhaps he shakes that a person off, too, and makes my night, month and year. If his career has actually informed us anything, it’s that anything is possible.
STEVIE WONDER August 3-4, 8 & & 10-11, 8 p.m., $63-$325. Park Theater, 844-600-7275.