A Time To Love - Press Release
Stevie Wonder ends 10-year absence just in 'Time'
Sunday October 02
LOS ANGELES (Billboard) - After several well-publicized delays,
Stevie Wonder's first studio album in 10 years, "A Time to Love," is due
in stores Oct. 18.
Wonder says the album's delay had nothing to do with any fear
factor: "I was never afraid to put this out. That was never the issue --
ever. I wanted it to sound contemporary but still be me. It was just a
matter of getting it right."
The artist adds, "Everyone worked very hard on this. I'm very
comfortable with everything."
The 15 original tracks, not surprisingly, revolve around the theme
of love. Musically, the set reflects Wonder's embrace of all genres,
from hip-hop to gospel to world music, with some arrangements using
strings. These musical and lyrical components spark memories of
signature songs from Wonder's 45-year career.
His duets with daughter Aisha Morris ("How Will I Know,"
"Positivity") recall her contribution as an infant on "Isn't She
Lovely," as does young son Kailand's impromptu assist at the end of
"Sweetest Somebody I Know."
Wonder gets down to man-and-his-piano basics on the jazzy "Moon
Blue" (co-written by "The Color Purple" actress Akosua Busia) and the
atmospheric "True Love." The inspirational "Shelter in the Rain" is
being promoted to gospel and Christian stations. It is available as a
single online Oct. 4 and in stores Oct. 18, with proceeds going to the
Wonder Foundation to benefit Hurricane Katrina relief efforts.
Guest vocalists include gospel artist Kim Burrell on the anthemic
"If Your Love Cannot Be Moved" (with choir vocals produced by Kirk
Franklin) and India.Arie on the title track. Other guests include
flutist Hubert Laws, guitarist Doc Powell, Paul McCartney, drummer
Narada Michael Walden and Brazilian guitarist Oscar Castro Neves. A
planned collaboration with John Mayer did not pan out because of
Fans -- who could download the full album beginning Sept. 27 at all
major online music sites -- will find more than just the new studio
recording awaiting them.
A week before the album's in-store date, a new boxed set of Wonder
material will be available exclusively from iTunes. According to Motown
president Sylvia Rhone, the boxed set will contain more than 570 tracks,
including remixes, rarities and previously unreleased material.
Wonder also appears on J Records' "So Amazing: An All-Star Tribute
to Luther Vandross," dueting with Beyonce on the title cut.