Stevie Wonder's Life in Photos

The venerated musician has given fans a vast collection of timeless music since the early '60s

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Stevie Wonder's Michigan Beginnings

Stevie Wonder. Popperfoto/Getty

Stevland Hardaway Judkins was born on May 13, 1950, in Saginaw, Michigan. The child prodigy, who lost his vision shortly after being born, learned how to play the piano before the age of 9. By 12 years old, Judkins signed to his first record contract with Berry Gordy's Motown's Tamla label, which is around the time he'd impressed label executives so much that he'd earned the nickname Stevie Wonder.

The star grew to prominence in the '60s and '70s, with hits like "My Cherie Amour" and "For Once in My Life," and went on to become one of only three artists in Grammy history to win album of the year three times in his career. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Barack Obama.

Read on to dive into the life and achievements of one of the greatest, most gifted musicians of all time.

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Stevie Wonder Records with Marvin Gaye

Stevie Wonder and Marvin Gaye around a microphone at the Motown recording studio in Detroit in 1965 in the United States. (Photo by Gilles Petard/Redferns)
Gilles Petard/Redferns

A young Stevie Wonder manned the mic next to music legend Marvin Gaye at the Motown recording studio in Detroit in 1965.

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Stevie Wonder Rehearses for Sounds of Tamla Motown

Smokey Robinson MoTown
Dezo Hoffman/Shutterstock

The up-and-coming star joined big acts — the Supremes, the Temptations, Martha Reeves and the Vandellas and Smokey Robinson — at rehearsals for the 1965 TV show Sounds of Tamla Motown in London.

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Stevie Wonder Guest Stars on The Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour

CBS Photo Archive/Getty

Musician and TV host Glenn Campbell joined Wonder as he performed on Campbell's TV variety series, The Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour, in 1969.

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Stevie Wonder's Family at the 1974 Grammys

Little Richard
CBS via Getty Images

The star's mom and brother joined him at the 16th annual Grammy Awards — and snapped a photo with Little Richard and Chuck Berry — in 1974.

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Stevie Wonder Live at The Garden

Stevie Wonder
Stevie Wonder. Michael Putland/Getty Images

Stevie Wonder performed hits from his Journey Through the Secret Life of Plants double album at Madison Square Garden in New York City in 1979.

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Stevie Wonder Attends the MLK Gala in 1982

ATLANTA JANUARY 01: Coretta Scott King, Stevie Wonder and Harry Belafonte during M.L.K Gala at The Atlanta Civic Center in Atlanta Georgia, January 01, 1982 (Photo by Rick Diamond/Getty Images
Rick Diamond/Getty

In support of Civil Rights and friends Coretta Scott King and Harry Belafonte, Wonder attended the MLK Gala at The Atlanta Civic Center in 1982.

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Stevie Wonder Is Inducted Into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

American singer and songwriter Stevie Wonder with his trophy at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony in New York City, 18th January 1989. His daughter Aisha is on the right. (Photo by Vinnie Zuffante/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
Vinnie Zuffante/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty

Paul Simon of Simon & Garfunkel had the honor of introducing and inducting Wonder into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in New York City in 1989. Wonder took the stage with his daughter Aisha to accept his award.

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Stevie Wonder Poses with Michael Jackson and Friends at the 1986 Grammy Awards

Lionel Richie cover
Michael Ochs Archive/Getty

It was a star-studded event at the 28th Annual Grammy Awards, where Wonder gathered with fellow music giants Quincy Jones, Dionne Warwick, Michael Jackson and Lionel Richie for a photo.

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Stevie Wonder Receives the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 1996 Grammys

LOS ANGELES, UNITED STATES: Musician Stevie Wonder (C) holds a Lifetime Achievement award as his son Keita (L) and daughter Aishia Morris hold his Grammy Awards for Best Male R & B Vocal Performance and Best R & B Song for "For Your Love" at the 38th Annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles 28 February. AFP PHOTO Jeff HAYNES/mn (Photo credit should read JEFF HAYNES/AFP via Getty Images)

The proud dad brought his kids, son Keita and daughter Aisha, to the 38th Annual Grammy Awards, where he was given the Lifetime Achievement Award and Grammys for best male R&B vocal performance and best R&B song for "For Your Love." The musician has been married three times and has nine children.

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Stevie Wonder Wins an Oscar for Best Song in 1985

Stevie Wonder who began learning the piano at the age of seven holds his Oscar award for the category of Best Song.

The legend isn't just a Grammy winner, he's won an Oscar, too. Wonder earned an Academy Award for Best Song in 1985 for "I Just Called to Say I Love You" for the film, The Woman in Red.

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Stevie Wonder Guest Stars on Saturday Night Live

American musician Stevie Wonder appears on an episode of 'Saturday Night Live' with comedian and actor Eddie Murphy (dressed as Stevie Wonder), New York, New York, 1983. (Photo by Anthony Barboza/Getty Images)
Anthony Barboza/Getty

Eddie Murphy did the honors of playing Wonder on Saturday Night Live in 1983.

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Stevie Wonder Poses with His Wax Statue in London

61497 02: Singer Stevie Wonder poses next to his wax double May 19, 1989 at Piccadilly's London Pavillion in London, England. Wonder is in London for a concert on his UK Tour. (Photo by Julian Parker/Liaison)
Julian Parker/Liaison

While on tour in the U.K., Wonder took a photo with his wax double at Piccadilly's London Pavillion in 1989.

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Stevie Wonder Embraces Nelson Mandela

South African President Nelson Mandela embraces American international pop-star Stevie Wonder (R) in Pretoria at the presidential residence 06 February. Mandela praised Wonder for his involvement in anti-apartheid activities when the African National Congress was still a banned organization in South Africa. AFP PHOTO (Photo credit should read WALTER DHLADHLA/AFP via Getty Images)

The then-South African President Nelson Mandela hugged the singer and thanked him for his involvement in anti-apartheid activities when the African National Congress was still a banned organization in South Africa.

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Stevie Wonder Performs at the Super Bowl in 1999

MIAMI GARDENS, FLORIDA--JANUARY 31: Musicians Gloria Estefan and Stevie Wonder perform at the Super Bowl XXXIII Halftime Show on January 31, 1999 in Miami. (Photo by Al Pereira/Getty Images/Michael Ochs Archives)
Al Pereira/Getty Images/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty

Gloria Estefan and Wonder headlined the Super Bowl XXXIII Halftime Show in Miami in 1999.

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Stevie Wonder Is Honored by the Kennedy Center

WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 4: The 1999 Kennedy Center Honorees, actor Sean Connery (top, R), dancer and teacher Judith Jamison (top,L), actor Jason Robards (seated,L), singer and songwriter Stevie Wonder (C) and comedian and pianist Victor Borge (seated, R) pose for the press following a dinner, hosted by US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright at the State Department in Washington DC late 04 December, 1999. The 1999 Honorees will be saluted by their peers at a gala at the Kennedy Center's Opera House 05 December. AFP PHOTO Neshan H. NALTCHAYAN (Photo credit should read NESHAN NALTCHAYAN/AFP via Getty Images)

Wonder joined fellow Kennedy Center honorees — Sean Connery, Judith Jamison, Jason Robards and Victor Borge — to have dinner, hosted by then-US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, at the State Department in Washington, D.C., in 1999.

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Stevie Wonder Meets with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon

NEW YORK - DECEMBER 03: Musician Stevie Wonder (L), who was appointed The United Nations Messenger of Peace, stands with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon at the United Nations on December 3, 2009 in New York City. (Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images)
Neilson Barnard/Getty

Then-UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon appointed Wonder to be the United Nations Messenger of Peace in 2009.

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Stevie Wonder Is Awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom

WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 24: U.S. President Barack Obama (L) presents the Presidential Medal of Freedom to singer songwriter Stevie Wonder (R) during an East Room ceremony at the White House November 24, 2014 in Washington, DC. The Presidential Medal of Freedom is the nation's highest civilian honor. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
Alex Wong/Getty

President Barack Obama presented Wonder with the Presidential Medial of Freedom at the White House in 2014.

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