Stevie Wonder took the ballad “For Once in My Life” and made it his own in 1968. The song had been recorded as a slow ballad before by The Temptations, the Four Tops and Tony Bennett. Stevie’s version of the song is much more upbeat. Berry Gordy of Motown didn’t like Stevie’s version and shelved it until he was convinced to release it. Stevie would be nominated for the Grammy Award for ‘Best Rhythm & Blues Vocal Performance, Male’ for the song.
Stevie has a long music career with his first hit song “Fingertips” being released in 1963 when he was 13. He has won 25 Grammy Awards as well as a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1996. His last major tour was in 2008.
“For Once in My Life” was the top song on the Cash Box record chart for just the week of Dec. 8 – 14, 1968. On the Billboard Hot 100 chart it only got up to #2 which it held for tow weeks (Dec. 22 – Jan. 4, 1969).