Stevie Wonder Performs With Smokey Robinson & More At The 2023 Grammys – Hollywood Life

Stevie Wonder Dazzles With A Grammys Performance Featuring Smokey Robinson & Chris Stapleton

When Stevie Wonder performed at the 2023 Grammys, he was joined by Chris Stapleton and the equally iconic Smokey Robinson for a medley of some of the classic Motown hits.

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Image Credit: Rob Latour/Shutterstock

The 2023 Grammy Awards was already set to be one of the biggest installments in the show’s 65-year history even before the Feb. 5 show began – but then they added Stevie Wonder. If there was anyone who could compete with the planned performances by Lizzo, Mary J. Blige, Steve Lacy, and the “rapsody” that is a celebration of 50 Years of Hip-Hop, it’s the “Superstition” singer himself. But, Stevie, 72, wasn’t alone. During his medley of songs, Smokey Robinson, 82, and Chris Stapleton, 44, joined Stevie on stage, adding their star power and voices to Wonder’s epic performance. Smokey’s voice still shone, and Chris delivered a guitar solo that will be ringing through the halls of rock until the end of time.

Rob Latour/Shutterstock
Rob Latour/Shutterstock

Days before the Feb. 5 event, the Record Academy announced that the Grammys would ” broadcast a special performance by the titanic singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist. The organization said that R&B group WanMore would join Wonder for the performance of “The Way You Do The Things You Do,” that Smokey would sing “Tears of the Clown,” and Chris would join in for “Higher Ground.” A reason for this performance wasn’t given, but when you can have Stevie Wonder perform at your show, you get Stevie Wonder to perform at your show.

Wonder is currently tied for seventh place for Most Grammys Won, having taken home 25 awards from 74 nominations. His most recent nomination came in 2010 at the 52nd Annual Grammy Awards, and he spoke with Billboard in 2021 about his history with the show. ” I know the feeling of hoping that you’ll win,” he said. “I didn’t for ‘Uptight,’ or, “Once in My Life,’ or ‘Signed, Sealed, Delivered.’ And at least three or four times, I had the same dream that I was at an awards show as a nominee, and when the presenter said, “And the winner is…,” I would wake up — and end up losing. My God, it was craziness. Then at the awards [in 1973], I hear my name called as [the] winner of Album of the Tear for Innervisions. I was so excited. I gave that Grammy to my mother.”


The icon also weighed in on the controversy and criticism surrounding the Grammy’s history by overlooking Black artists. ” When people limit rappers to the rap categories … I mean, these people are storytellers, who are called griots in Africa. And these storytellers have grown [in number] from back in the day with groups like The Last Poets to what we have right here right now,” he said. “They created a whole other art form that has been going on for years: using turntables to tell their stories over music. Just because they didn’t do it as traditional poetry doesn’t mean it’s not as significant.”

“I was happy for Adele winning album of the year [for 25 in 2017], but I was also very disappointed that Beyoncé didn’t win [for Lemonade],” said Stevie. “And Adele said, ‘Hey, thank you, but this person is more deserving of this than me.’ And I think an artist should be able to say that if they feel that way. It doesn’t take anything away from them. I think it makes a person even greater when they’re able to take a position.”

On Friday, Smokey Robinson and Berry Gordy were honored as the first dual recipients of the MusiCares Person of the Year Honor, per USA Today. Stevie Wonder and Lionel Richie made surprise appearances during the show, adding to the lineup that featured Sheryl Crow, Brandi Carlile, The Temptations, the Four Tops, Dionne Warwick, Molly Tuttle, Samara Joy, Valerie Simpson, Jimmie Allen, Rita Wilson, Sebastian Yatra and Mumford & Sons. Robinson took a moment during his acceptance speech to thank his longtime friend and mentor, saying that when they first met, “it was the beginning of my dream come true.”

“I’m happy to be here with my best friend,” added Gordy. “I mean…damn.”