Watch The Wonderful Teamup Of Stevie Wonder and Jeff Beck For “Superstition”
via Rock & Roll Hall of Fame / Youtube
Stevie Wonder is a legend of his right, but sometimes, it makes a whole lot of difference if a legend teams up with his/her fellow ones. Wonder’s “Superstition” is mere proof of that.
Multi-instrumentalist and composer Stevie Wonder played practically every instrument on his albums. However, Wonder isn’t confident with his guitar skills, so he often lets those who are willing play that part. Enter Jeff Beck, who’s a fan of the musician’s work, to play all of the guitar parts in Wonder’s Talking Book album. In return, Wonder has to compose a song for Beck, thus the creation of the well-known song, “Superstition.”
Beck wrote the song’s opening drum rhythm in between sessions. After Wonder instructed Beck to continue playing, he improvised on top of the track. The riff and the majority of the song were both improvised by Wonder on the spot and on that day, both the musicians recorded a demo version of the song.
After completing “Superstition,” Wonder decided to honor their promise and let Beck record it. It was always supposed to be Beck’s rendition with his new power trio Beck, Bogert, and Appice that would come out first. However, Wonder released “Superstition” as a lead single months before Beck’s version was issued on the Beck, Bogert & Appice album in March 1973 due to the delay of the trio’s debut album and Motown CEO Berry Gordy’s prediction that the song would boost the sales of the Talking Book album. Beck didn’t initially like Wonder’s sly decision, yet soon got over it.
In 2009, inside the 25th-anniversary concert of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Stevie Wonder and Jeff Beck reprised their roles and played “Superstition” once again, which can be viewed below.