Stevie Wonder - My Cherie Amour

The goodness just keeps coming.  Here's more Stevie, live in his youth:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gc0Xly5s1Ak

More tongue-clicking at 1:29!  And he looks like he's sitting particularly low at the keyboard; this might have something to do with what they tell me about him playing without his thumbs.  The ballet dancer superimposed is pretty fantastic, but more so is the realization the Stevie Wonder is one of those people who simply does not sing out of tune -- it's obvious from the deviations from the recording that he's singing live, but he's always spot-on with his pitch.  The only person I've met to truly do that with such ridiculous (near-mechanical) consistency was Phillip Childers, in the Achordants.  Wowzer.

Now try this one:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KP3aXv_RioE

The pitch is still ridiculously spot on, but the phrasing and the performance are much more "Greatest Hits"-y.  After all that time, the inspiration for singing a beautiful song is largely gone, and the natural spontaneous enthusiasm has left; in their place is a near-craven desire to spice it up somehow, lest the magic be gone.  Concerts like these are important to honor a great hero, but nostalgia does not equal innovation.  Stevie applies new musical styles to this performance; however, I always imagine he is much happier when he is producing new material.

The biggest hurdle, I imagine, is that those who grew up with his music are not longer looking for new music -- only reminiscence.