Entertainment Music Stevie Wonder's Life in Photos The venerated musician has given fans a vast collection of timeless music since the early '60s By Diane J. Cho Diane J. Cho Diane J. Cho was the Features Editor of PEOPLE Digital from 2019 to 2022. She worked at the brand for nearly four years covering news, features, human interest, evergreen, holiday gift guides and more. She launched the How I Parent and What It's Really Like to Be …. digital series and has interviewed several celebrities and influential leaders within the entertainment industry. Prior to joining PEOPLE, Diane worked at Bustle, VH1 and Complex. She received her bachelor's degree in Journalism from Rutgers University and her master's degree from Columbia Journalism School. People Editorial Guidelines Published on May 13, 2022 05:02 PM Share Tweet Pin Email Trending Videos 01 of 18 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. 02 of 18 Stevie Wonder Records with Marvin Gaye 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. 03 of 18 Stevie Wonder Rehearses for Sounds of Tamla 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. 04 of 18 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. 05 of 18 Stevie Wonder's Family at the 1974 Grammys 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. 06 of 18 Stevie Wonder Live at The Garden 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. 07 of 18 Stevie Wonder Attends the MLK Gala in 1982 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. 08 of 18 Stevie Wonder Is Inducted Into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 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. 09 of 18 Stevie Wonder Poses with Michael Jackson and Friends at the 1986 Grammy Awards 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. 10 of 18 Stevie Wonder Receives the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 1996 Grammys JEFF HAYNES/AFP/Getty 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. 11 of 18 Stevie Wonder Wins an Oscar for Best Song in 1985 Getty 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. 12 of 18 Stevie Wonder Guest Stars on Saturday Night Live Anthony Barboza/Getty Eddie Murphy did the honors of playing Wonder on Saturday Night Live in 1983. 13 of 18 Stevie Wonder Poses with His Wax Statue in London 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. 14 of 18 Stevie Wonder Embraces Nelson Mandela WALTER DHLADHLA/AFP/Getty 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. 15 of 18 Stevie Wonder Performs at the Super Bowl in 1999 Al Pereira/Getty Images/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Gloria Estefan and Wonder headlined the Super Bowl XXXIII Halftime Show in Miami in 1999. 16 of 18 Stevie Wonder Is Honored by the Kennedy Center NESHAN NALTCHAYAN/AFP/Getty 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. 17 of 18 Stevie Wonder Meets with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon Neilson Barnard/Getty Then-UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon appointed Wonder to be the United Nations Messenger of Peace in 2009. 18 of 18 Stevie Wonder Is Awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom Alex Wong/Getty President Barack Obama presented Wonder with the Presidential Medial of Freedom at the White House in 2014.