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Performer Notes
  • Aired on VH-1 and PBS, the video of SONGS IN THE KEY OF LIFE includes new interviews, performances, and additional footage not previously seen.
  • Personnel includes: Stevie Wonder (vocals, harmonica, piano, keyboards); George Benson (guitar, background vocals); Michael Sembello (guitar); Peter Kleinow (steel guitar); Dorothy Ashby (harp); Bobbi Humphrey (flute); Hank Redd (alto & tenor saxophones); Trevor Lawrence (tenor saxophone); Jim Horn (saxophone); Raymond Maldonado (trumpet, percussion); Glen Ferris (trombone); Ronnie Foster (organ); Herbie Hancock, Gregory Phillinganes (keyboards); Eddie Brown (collinga); Nathan Watts (bass, percussion); Raymond Pounds (drums); Carmello Hungria Gracia (timbales); Renee Hardaway (percussion); Al Fann Theatrical Ensemble, Minnie Riperton, Deniece Williams, Syreeta Wright, West Angeles Church Of God Choir, Hare Krishna Singers (background vocals).
  • Recorded at the Hit Factory, New York, New York, The Record Plant, Los Angeles, California and The Record Plant, Sausalito, California.
  • This is a limited edition digipak.
  • Personnel includes: Stevie Wonder (vocals, harmonica, piano, keyboards); George Benson (guitar, background vocals); Michael Sembello (guitar); Peter Kleinow (steel guitar); Dorothy Ashby (harp); Bobbi Humphrey (flute); Hank Redd (alto & tenor saxophones); Trevor Lawrence (tenor saxophone); Jim Horn (saxophone); Raymond Maldonado (trumpet, percussion); Glen Ferris (trombone); Ronnie Foster (organ); Herbie Hancock, Gregory Phillinganes (keyboards); Eddie Brown (collinga); Nathan Watts (bass, percussion); Raymond Pounds (drums); Carmello Hungria Gracia (timbales); Renee Hardaway (percussion); Al Fann Theatrical Ensemble, Minnie Riperton, Deniece Williams, Syreeta Wright, West Angeles Church Of God Choir, Hare Krishna Singers (background vocals).
  • Recorded at the Hit Factory, New York, New York; The Record Plant, Los Angeles, California; The Record Plant, Sausalito, California. Includes liner notes by Stevie Wonder
  • All tracks have been digitally remastered.
  • SONGS IN THE KEY OF LIFE is a milestone in Stevland Morris' career and a masterwork of American popular music. Released in 1976, this double LP spent 14 of its 80 charting weeks at number one. From his sharp commentaries on American social history and pro-peace supplications to some of his most intimate professions of love, witness Stevie Wonder at a prolific point in his career, casting his music further beyond R&B, funk, and disco than ever before.
  • Present here are some of Stevie's greatest hits in their original context: the widely-sampled horn swirls of "Sir Duke," comical baby-noise-laced jamming of "Isn't She Lovely" and fiercely poetic declaration of "As" still shine as brightly as ever. Perhaps less well-known are tunes like, "Joy Inside My Tears," a slow, entrancing, synth-vamp on love's redemptive powers, or the fast-grooving funkout, "Black Man," a compelling salute to America's pioneers of color. The keyboard sounds are as varied as ever, the bass as waggish as Bootsy, the arrangements a consummate preparation of melody and harmony. KEY OF LIFE is an inspired work in which Stevie marvels at life's unexpected miracles.
Professional Reviews
Rolling Stone (12/11/03, p.112) - Ranked #56 in Rolling Stone's "500 Greatest Albums Of All Time" - "...[Wonder] displays his effortless mastery of funk, jazz, balladry, Afrobeat and even a string-quartet minuet..."

Q (10/99, p.161) - Included in Q Magazine's Best Motown Records Of All Time - "...the apex of Wonder's creativity....A big record in many senses."

Muzik (8/99, p.138) - "...[SONGS] best reflects [Stevie's] global influence on contemporary soul, jazz, funk, rap and pop....[it] speaks to the adult mind, politically, racially and emotionally. It shows how shockingly talented Wonder is..."
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