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The Prophetic Character of Black Secular Music: Stevie Wonder

The Prophetic Character of Black Secular Music: Stevie Wonder The Prophetic Chorader ol Block Secular Music: Slerie Wonder Harold Dean Trulear While ferreting through background and secondary materials for this essay, I came across a review article in the December 1976 issue of Crawdaddy entitled "Rev. Stevie Wonder presents (Finally!) Psalms in the Key of Life." In this interesting assessment of the album Songs in the Key of Life, John Pareles stops just short of calling Stevie Wonder naive in his use of such lyrics as: "For solving the problems of all men, women, little boys and girls / when you feel your life's too hard/ just go have a talk with God." Pareles ridicules Wonder's sense that his position carries with it "some sort of ethical responsibility" and says that "the one-time Junior Deacon of Detroit's Whitestone Baptist Church ... would be crazy to pass up this gospel-spreading opportunity .... Like a peanutless Jimmy Carter, Stevie stands ready to bring love and trust to all Americans." In searching for the source of Stevie Wonder's message, Pareles quips, "Maybe Stevie's the last Hippie." Who else could check out the seventies landscape and in all sincerity announce that "love, God and 'living for the future paradise' are the answer? http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Black Sacred Music Duke University Press

The Prophetic Character of Black Secular Music: Stevie Wonder

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Copyright
Copyright © 1989 by Duke University Press
ISSN
1043-9455
eISSN
2640-9879
DOI
10.1215/10439455-3.2.75
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The Prophetic Chorader ol Block Secular Music: Slerie Wonder Harold Dean Trulear While ferreting through background and secondary materials for this essay, I came across a review article in the December 1976 issue of Crawdaddy entitled "Rev. Stevie Wonder presents (Finally!) Psalms in the Key of Life." In this interesting assessment of the album Songs in the Key of Life, John Pareles stops just short of calling Stevie Wonder naive in his use of such lyrics as: "For solving the problems of all men, women, little boys and girls / when you feel your life's too hard/ just go have a talk with God." Pareles ridicules Wonder's sense that his position carries with it "some sort of ethical responsibility" and says that "the one-time Junior Deacon of Detroit's Whitestone Baptist Church ... would be crazy to pass up this gospel-spreading opportunity .... Like a peanutless Jimmy Carter, Stevie stands ready to bring love and trust to all Americans." In searching for the source of Stevie Wonder's message, Pareles quips, "Maybe Stevie's the last Hippie." Who else could check out the seventies landscape and in all sincerity announce that "love, God and 'living for the future paradise' are the answer?

Journal

Black Sacred MusicDuke University Press

Published: Sep 1, 1989

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