We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: blind guys are cool. The dog, the stick, the shades—the whole package is pretty money.

To that package at the age of 11 Stevie Wonder added a Motown record deal, a six-octave range, virtuosity in seven different instruments, a can’t-lose smile and a popped gingham collar.

So why is there an asterisk next to Stevie’s name?

Yeeeeah…

Stevie Wonder’s career is typically broken into four sections: early fame (child savant), the classic period (1972-1979), the commercial period (1979-1992) and the present.

For our purposes, let’s call everything up to 1979 “iconic” and let’s call everything else “a different world from where we’re comin’ from (yes it is now).” Never have two photographs of Bette Midler taken 30 years apart illustrated a point so precisely…

But Stevie didn’t seem to mind—and can you blame him?

He had the bird phase…

The chicken phase…

The Theo Huxtable phase…

The beaver skin phase…

The skinny beaver phase…

The unencumbered percussionist phase…

The encumbered percussionist phase…

The heroin-chic/blind-French-children outreach phase. (Adorable phase.)

In the end, we’re with Stevie all the way—since we’ve yet to find a phase more stylish than that in which you don’t give one single solitary fuck.

Just don’t forget the shades…

And keep it funky on Sesame Street…

—C.B.S.

CONTRIBUTORS

  • C. Brian Smith