Stevie Wonder & Clarence Paul – Blowin’ In The Wind (1966) #1 R&B; #9 Pop
The teenager Stevie Wonder began producing and composing songs with his album releases in 1966. The first release “Up-Tight” included this cover of the great Bob Dylan classic “Blowin’ In The Wind.” The Up-Tight LP charted #2 R&B and #33 on the Billboard Top 200 lists in 1966.
The anecdote goes that Clarence Paul had introduced the socially aware Wonder to this folk song and that he liked it so much that he performed it in his concerts. Stevie forgot the lyrics to the second verse during a performance and Paul coached him along. From that day forward Steveland always sang the song with Paul as a duet and it is Paul’s voice you hear on the single that was made after fans insisted it be put on wax after two years of performing it on stage.
To this day I can recall the Tuesday after school that I bought the 45 rpm and played it on the relatively new record player that grandmother had purchased for the living room. I loved Stevie’s spin on the song and actually listened to it and understood the meaning. You gotta admit that Dylan’s voice wasn’t a crowd-pleaser — so being a youngster I never really stopped to listen to what Dylan had written about until Stevie’s rockin’ re-make. Then I understood every word and I took Paul’s harmony parts when I sang it aloud ion the sofa in front of the stereo.
Covered by folk artists, rock artists, country artists, pop artists and soul artists alike, the song even inspired Sam Cooke to write another classic of the rock era on the same subject matter, “A Change Is Gonna Come.” Cooke loved “Blowin’” so very much and said he should have written that song! He covered it in concert and on wax.
Bob Dylan – Blowin’ In The Wind (1963)
Bob Dylan wrote this classic masterpiece and first performed in 1962. It finally appeared on a Dylan album in 1963 titled “The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan, that establish this man as an iconic songwriter. The LP peaked at #22 on the Billboard Top 200 Chart.
This song has been written about ad-finitum so you can probably Google it until your heart is content – so there is not much more I can say other than giving you a link to the lyrics and letting you listen and enjoy!
For as long as it lasts on YouTube here is a piece of history – Dylan, Peter, Paul and Mary and Stevie Wonder performing “Blowin’ In The Wind!”
And this YouTube gem is an awesome clip from the “Glen Campell Goodtime Show” that I mentioned in my previous post. Stevie Wonder guests in this episode and he and Glen duet on “Blowin’ In The Wind.”
Filed under:Blowin' In The Wind,Bob Dylan,Bob Dylan Composer,Capitol Records,Covers That Hit!,Famous Folk Music,Live Performances,Motown,Motown Covers Pop,Number Ones,Pop/Folk,R&B/Motown,Sixties,Stevie Wonder and Clarence Paul