Stevie Wonder Delights Bill Withers With Harpejji Cover Of “Ain’t No Sunshine”

Picture this: Bill Withers, seated next to Stevie Wonder, while they perform Withers’ iconic song “Ain’t No Sunshine” at his Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction in 2015. Stevie Wonder’s soulful rendition, complete with foot-tapping and improvisation, is a testament to his musical genius, leaving Withers visibly touched and grateful.

Withers’ journey to the Hall of Fame was unconventional, as he was inducted “25 years or something” after retiring from performing. Despite his initial reluctance to be in the spotlight, Withers stole the show with his witty and heartfelt acceptance speech, showcasing his humility and honesty.

During the ceremony, John Legend invited Withers on stage for a surprise performance of “Lean on Me,” where Withers humorously pretended to sing behind Legend. Additionally, Withers jokingly referred to himself as the “assistant Harpejji player,” shedding light on Stevie Wonder’s unique instrument of choice.

The Harpejji, invented by Tim Meeks, combines elements of an electric guitar and a piano, allowing for versatile playing techniques and sound effects. Wonder’s mastery of this instrument, despite his blindness, speaks volumes about his musical talent and innovation.

Wonder, known for his proficiency on multiple instruments, has a particular fondness for the Clavinet, a precursor to the Harpejji. His iconic use of the Clavinet, exemplified in songs like “Superstition,” showcases his ability to push musical boundaries and create timeless sounds.

In essence, the collaboration between Withers and Wonder, accompanied by Wonder’s unique instrument choice, highlights the depth of their musical prowess and the enduring impact of their contributions to the music industry.

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