I've always been a huge Stevie Wonder fan and have loved all of his many many hits, which is why when I was 14 and saw him dressed in his usual outrageous garbs at LAX airport while on vacation out in LA I was struck speechless. My stepdad though wasn't and asked the rock, jazz and pop star if he'd take a picture with me. I must have started to say something and he leaned down to ask what and all I could say was, "My name is Tara." He just nodded, the photo went click and that was that. I never told him that despite the generational gap that I'm a big fan and that I know every one of his songs and that every time one would play on the radio, I'd yell out "Stevie!" or how "You are the Sunshine of My Life" was my parent's wedding song, nope just my name. *sigh*
I was still excited about the photo though and eagerly called my dad from the airport to tell him the awesome news that I saw Stevie Wonder and without hesitation his response was, "I bet he didn't see you. Oh did he tell you that you were the prettiest girl he ever saw?" I hung up on him in annoyance.
So now, quite a few years later, when I heard Stevie was giving a benefit concert out here and tickets were still available, I hurried online and bought two without thinking of the price. Add in the fact that I heard the OJays ("Love Train" and "I love Music") and Al Jarreau (I have the Moonlighting soundtrack because of his songs) were performing too and I was now super psyched. My boyfriend on the other hand was pretty indifferent.
Stevie Wonder's 11th annual House Full of Toys benefit concert asks that everyone in attendance donate an unwrapped toy for underprivileged kids. I brought a Batman Hot Wheels Set and Quints dolls to donate. I had already bought a Muppets in Space video for the one at work. However, not everyone brought toys like requested but a lot did. The amphitheater was in Universal City and held 6,000 people after all. So, hopefully the organization did well.
The concert started at 7:30 and ended at 12:30, so yeah super long. I think there were just too many acts, which is why they ran an hour and a half over and were forced to cut down on Stevie's songs at the end. He did manage to sing "Living for the City," "Ribbon in the Sky," "Castle of Love," a duet with his daughter and "My Cherie Amour." And earlier during the program, comedian guest, Chris Tucker, got Stevie to come out to sing Someday at Christmas with him as Chris messed up the words, it was funny. Stevie also provided some back-up support for the different performers as he jammed with them, which was a nice treat. The show overall provided audience members into a good glimpse into his personality, since he was making jokes throughout and showing his big heart to all. Other performers included gospel singers and Brian McKnight, Corinne Bailey Rae, Jon B, Tyrese and Yolanda Adams.