(Legendary Motown artist, Stevie Wonder performing during his Song Party tour on The Colosseum Stage inside Caesars Windsor on Nov. 6, 2018. Photo above by Kevin Blondin / Eyes On Windsor.)
Stevie Wonder fans were treated to an interactive and intimate celebration show featuring a message of love and kindness during the Stevie Wonder Song Party tour stop at Caesars Windsor inside a packed Colosseum on Tuesday night.
On Facebook, legendary Motown artist and 25 time Grammy winner Stevie Wonder sent a personal invitation to those coming to his Song Party for a celebration of life, love & music. “Now, more than ever, we need a Song Party, ’cause love’s in need of love today,” he posted. “So, get ready for you and your dancing spirit to have the time of your life!”
Fitting well with the theme, Eyes On Windsor contributor Dan Boshart says for one of the final songs, “guests enjoyed him covering, “a sombre version of John Lennon’s Imagine saying the song meant a lot to him personally and was still very relevant with today’s issues.” However, the rest of the show that led up to this second last song was far from somber, it was a party! Dan attended the concert, not on assignment but to celebrate his wedding anniversary with his wife Jackie.
In addition, Stevie invited ticket holders to send in photos, videos, or a quote along with memories and ways his songs have filled a special space, place, or time in their life, before they came to the show. A “Stevie Music Moment,” as they are called on the Stevie Wonder Song Party website. Some of those fan submissions were shown on a large video screen, including someone’s family photo, during the show.
Upon entering The Colosseum guests were given LED bracelets. The party kicked off with DJ Wess Coast spinning tunes for the crowd warning them up before Stevie Wonder hit the stage. Those LED bracelets were lit up and remotely controlled, changing color in sync among the audience, a nice touch for a dance and song party.
Wonder opened the show with his 1980 release, As If You Read My Mind, from the album Hotter Than July. Later in the show, also from the same album, the audience was thrilled with the major hit, which spent seven weeks at number one on the Billboard R&B singles chart in the fall of 1980, Master Blaster (Jammin’). The song was complete with bit of Bob Marley’s “Jammin'”with Marley on pre-recorded vocals and included the albums title, Hotter Than July, in the lyrics. True to a party Wonder had people on their feet, dancing, and singing.
On top of the opening half hour with DJ Wess Coast, Stevie performed for over 2 hours with a lot of stage banter and drawn out song openings and some soloing. Band members performed a sensational saxophone solo, followed by a thrilling trumpet solo, and then Stevie’s hair-raising harmonica solo.
Stevie also interacted with the crowd by having them singing along on some songs, as Boshart says, “particularly the opening to Don’t You Worry Bout A Thing, where he had men and women singing harmonic parts to the opening chords.” During his performance of My Cherie Amore, “he conducted a ‘music class’ challenging the audience to repeat musical phrases.”
“Stevie’s voice was in fine form, he can still hit notes unlike many of his contemporaries,” said Boshart.
“And he finished with a rousing version of Superstition that had the crowd on its feet!”
With Motown just across the border from Windsor, many hometown Stevie Wonder fans made the trip to The Colosseum to catch the show. In fact, Motown legend, Martha Reeves of the Vandellas was spotted in the audience dancing in The Colosseum, instead of “Dancing in The Street!” Peter Hrastovec, posted a photo on Facebook with the caption, “The look of surprise on my sister-in-law, Yvette’s face is because that is Martha Reeves standing behind her at the Stevie Wonder concert!”
Stevie Wonder is one of the most celebrated and prominent figures in popular music and is the recipient of numerous awards and honors including 25 Grammy Awards, the prestigious Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, a Golden Globe, and an Academy Award. His humanitarian efforts are world known. He is the youngest recipient of the Kennedy Center Honors and is a Commander of France’s National Order of Arts and Letters. Stevie has received the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and is a designated U.N. Messenger of Peace with special focus on persons with disabilities.
For more information about Stevie Wonder, his music, and upcoming shows visit https://www.facebook.com/StevieWonder
The Stevie Wonder Song Party was part of Caesars Windsor’s 6th annual Concerts for a Cure, an innovative social awareness campaign that is raising funds for five local cancer-related charities.
Upcoming shows in The Concerts for a Cure campaign series include Comedy Sensation Gabriel “Fluffy” Iglesias (Nov. 23), Brian Wilson of The Beach Boys (Nov. 25), and alternative rockers Three Days Grace (Nov. 29).
In addition, Caesars Windsor will be holding several holiday shows including the annual local holiday tradition in the Sleighing Hunger Concert featuring The S’Aints (De. 21). Some of the latest exciting shows to be announced for 2019 include The Price is Right Live (Feb. 16 & 17) and Legendary Southern Rock icon Lynyrd Skynyrd (Mar 3).
Photos by Kevin Blondin
Kevin Blondin is an aspiring photographer studying public relations at the St. Clair College Mediaplex. He is dedicated to promoting artists, entertainment and events in the Windsor-Detroit area. Kevin has recently launched Sound & City Photography which can be found on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.