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Stevie Wonder — Superstition
Album: Talking Book
Avg rating:
8.6

Your rating:
Total ratings: 3489









Released: 1972
Length: 4:24
Plays (last 30 days): 3
Very superstitious, writing's on the wall
Very superstitious, ladder's 'bout to fall
Thirteen-month-old baby, broke the lookin' glass
Seven years of bad luck, your good things in your past

When you believe in things that you don't understand
Then you suffer
Superstition ain't the way
Yeah-eah, ay

Ooh, very superstitious, wash your face and hands
Rid me of the problem, do all that you can
Keep me in a daydream, keep me goin' strong, yeah
You don't wanna save me, sad is my song

When you believe in things that you don't understand
Then you suffer
Superstition ain't the way
Yeah, yeah
Oh, no
Ahh, ha!
Ow

Very superstitious, nothin' more to say
Very superstitious, the Devil's on his way
Thirteen-month-old baby, mmm, broke the lookin' glass
Seven years of bad luck, good things in your past
Mmm-hmm

When you believe in things that you don't understand
Then you suffer
Superstition ain't the way
No, no, no
Ooh

Ah-ah-ah, ah-ah
Ooh
Ah

Mmm, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah
Hee, hee, hee, hee, hee, hee
Ooh-ooh
Ooh-ooh
Ooh-hoo
Hoo, hmm, hmm
Comments (448)add comment
 GTT wrote:
One of the first funky songs I ever heard as a young kid. Was at a resort in the Poconos and Cousin Brucie Morrow was there officiating a dance contest. Two of the counselors did a nasty little dance together to this tune--which was eye-opening in not such a good way. But always loved SW--saw him many times at Madison Square Garden, even with my grandfather. Remember Stevie saying one time before a song that it was going to be so nasty that we weren't going to able to stand it--and then he played "Three Blind Mice"!
 
My wife always looks at me when this plays to see my expression as I remember a young lady dancing to this at a Bristol(!) Uni party. All the guys came out of the kitchen to watch... Superb track and the moves did it justice.
This is the stuff!
Happy Holidays to all RP listeners.


www.youtube.com/watch?v=BWgApS...
Such a great song, but I was wondering if our opinion of Stevie would change if we suddenly found out he was never blind all these years.
One of the first funky songs I ever heard as a young kid. Was at a resort in the Poconos and Cousin Brucie Morrow was there officiating a dance contest. Two of the counselors did a nasty little dance together to this tune--which was eye-opening in not such a good way. But always loved SW--saw him many times at Madison Square Garden, even with my grandfather. Remember Stevie saying one time before a song that it was going to be so nasty that we weren't going to able to stand it--and then he played "Three Blind Mice"!
 MattRudely wrote:
Check out the Sesame Street 1974 performance. Joyous! Suffer little modern children, watch it and weep.
 
I feel for the modern kids too...thanks for THAT line brother and Long Live RP!!
One of the best songs in the last 50 years.  Duh.
I'm a simple man. I see a Stevie Wonder song, I vote 10 as often as I can :-)

Simply blows my mind how this man was/is able to not only conceive of this multi-layered stunner of a song (and many others at that!) AND then goes ahead and practically plays like 10 instruments to perfection (those bass-fillers! horns!  keyboards!!!) and and and...

Sorry, I'm just going to shut up now and listen some more, for only the 12532055th time.
From Wiki:

Jeff Beck was an admirer of Wonder's music, and Wonder was informed of this prior to the Talking Book album sessions. Though at this point he was virtually playing all of the instruments on his songs by himself, Wonder preferred to let other guitarists play on his records, and he liked the idea of a collaboration with Beck. An agreement was quickly made for Beck to become involved in the sessions that became the Talking Book album, in return for Wonder writing him a song.

Between the album sessions, Beck came up with the opening drum beat. Wonder told Beck to keep playing while he improvised over the top of it. He improvised most of the song, including the riff, on the spot. Beck and Wonder created a rough demo for the song that day.

After finishing the song, Wonder decided that he would allow Beck to record "Superstition" as part of their agreement. Originally, the plan was for Beck to release his version of the song first, with his newly formed power trio Beck, Bogert & Appice. However, due to the combination of the trio's debut album getting delayed and Motown CEO Berry Gordy's prediction that "Superstition" would be a huge hit and greatly increase the sales of Talking Book, Wonder released the song as the Talking Book lead single months ahead of Beck's version, the latter being issued in March 1973 on the Beck, Bogert & Appice album.

Check out the Sesame Street 1974 performance. Joyous! Suffer little modern children, watch it and weep.
9 because it's simply a great song.  +1 because Stevie plays the drums on it!
The horns...omg.
Ooh, very superstitious, wash your face and hands
Rid me of the problem, do all that you can
Keep me in a daydream, keep me goin' strong, yeah
You don't wanna save me, sad is my song

Words for this time!
 jmkate wrote:
I have just proven that you can successfully dance and drink coffee simultaneously :)
 
Sippy cup?


 unclehud wrote:
…that can be corroborated through multiple, independent, sources
 
Which, of course, excludes the mainstream media -- as they're neither multiple, nor independent, nor sources.
 spicemeister wrote:
I was doing afternoon drive in Corpus Christi in '71 when Stevie came through for a sold out concert. I was to introduce him, was running a tad late (getting prepared, don'tcha know?!) and zipped down the coast road in my '64 "Vette with the top down, and Stevie blasting on a custom 8 track I'd made at the station.

Pulled into my spot and humped it up the back steps (no ADA in those daze) with my full length brace on the right leg. The men's room was out of order, so everyone was using the ladies. Went over to wash my hands, standing next to a very attractive lady and said, "I just can't believe we're going to see him in person!" "Big fan?" she asked. "Oh, hell yes," I told her. "I've listened to him in many frames of mind with headphones in various locations." She understood. "Do you think he'll do all the old hits tonight?", I asked. "Probably some new ones as well," she replied.  and split.

Later, standing by the curtain waiting to introduce the man of the hour, that same lady came up..just appeared at my side, with Stevie. "Never got your name," she said. "Johnny..Johnny Marks," I sort of stammered out. "Johnny, this is Stevie. This is the young man I told you about from the lady's room," she told him. "It's a real pleasure to meet someone who can truly listen to my music," he said shaking my hand and giving me a big smile.

He did "Superstition" that night, "for Johnny," and I'll never forget it. 
 


 

This needs reposting
I started to like this song a lot when I saw the movie "I Robot", high volume, big screen. It's been on my top 50 list ever since.
Listen to those horns. That little warble at the end of their riff didn’t have to be there, but he put it in.
è sempre energia allo stato puro
He was brilliant in James Corden's car karoake
 jmkate wrote:
I have just proven that you can successfully dance and drink coffee simultaneously :)
 
These days I can't do anything simultaneously, let alone successfully...
OMG!  After all these years, this is the first time I've read the lyrics. "Superstition ain't the way". I had no idea he was saying that.
Superstition is still going strong in the 21st century.  And so is this song!
Boom!  Mic Drop....
Masterpiece. 
Message to US voters:  ONLY believe in things that you understand, and that can be corroborated through multiple, independent, sources.

"If you believe in things that you don't understand, then you suffer."
I have just proven that you can successfully dance and drink coffee simultaneously :)
to me it's commercial tune
Possibly the best song ever written.  
Actually, for me, this is the greatest piece of all time.
 ScottFromWyoming wrote:

That's a cool story. Reading further on, he's disappointed that he didn't release his more quickly, it would have been a massive, massive hit. 

Jeff's version is horrible.
 

Wow thank you for this bit of info. Both are 2 of my all time favorites , but I never knew Jeff Beck had anything to do with this track!
Beck + wonder = Musical genius 
9 The Brilliance that is Little Stevie Wonder
r
Some people think the best pop music of all time was recorded in the early 1970s. Hard to disagree listening to this cut.
Utter utter brilliance
Talking Book ranks up there with Songs In The Key Of Life as his greatest album.   
You can't help grooving to this one... it's superstitious if you don't. 

Keep me in a day dream, keep me going strong...
 thewiseking wrote:
rendered unlistenable by overplay. please dig a lil deeper on Stevie's catalogue
 
When you believe in things that you don't understand, and you suffer...
 black321 wrote:
p.s., what's he looking at on the ground in that cover pic?
  
Great song! found this record at a garage sale - it has braille on the cover. Always thought was really cool. 
 BKardon wrote:
"Beck went into the story in a bit further detail in Annette Carson’s book Jeff Beck: Crazy Fingers, saying, “One day I was sitting at the drum kit, which I love to play when nobody’s around, doing this beat. Stevie came kinda boogieing into the studio: ‘Don’t stop.’ ‘Ah, c’mon, Stevie,’ I can’t play the drums.’ Then the lick came out: ‘Superstition.’ That was my song, in return for Talking Book. I thought, ‘He’s given me the riff of the century.'”

 
That's a cool story. Reading further on, he's disappointed that he didn't release his more quickly, it would have been a massive, massive hit. 

Jeff's version is horrible.
An older Canadian band called "Wide Mouth Mason" cover this song and simply knock it out of the park. Amazing rendition.
 hayduke2 wrote:
then comes Joan Armatrading — Mama Papa right after

 
Same today. Just not my cup of tea though.
"Beck went into the story in a bit further detail in Annette Carson’s book Jeff Beck: Crazy Fingers, saying, “One day I was sitting at the drum kit, which I love to play when nobody’s around, doing this beat. Stevie came kinda boogieing into the studio: ‘Don’t stop.’ ‘Ah, c’mon, Stevie,’ I can’t play the drums.’ Then the lick came out: ‘Superstition.’ That was my song, in return for Talking Book. I thought, ‘He’s given me the riff of the century.'”
Chair dancing, thanks!
rendered unlistenable by overplay. please dig a lil deeper on Stevie's catalogue
 chinaski wrote:
Amazing that this song comes on while I'm reading a news article about celebrities who claim to be athiests!

 
You don't think celebrities are smart enough to be atheists?  They just "claim to be..."?
Amazing that this song comes on while I'm reading a news article about celebrities who claim to be athiests!
 By then I'd lost interest in anything but a line scratched behind the couch.
Had to crank the shit out of this.
Strongest grooviest song eva - then comes Joan Armatrading — Mama Papa right after and baby that is SUPER  : )
Clavinet intro and then that unforgettable horn line. Timeless.
 nutrod42 wrote:

No guitar — that's a clavinet.

 
So it is!  Well damn! 44 years of listening to this song and picturing the wrong musicianship in my head.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xd4F0TydvAc
 
This song is ruined for me, sad but the song only reminds me of a Bud Light commercial now.
I just shut down the office for the day when this came on. Go Stevie!
 Oh yeah! {#Whistle}
 Typesbad wrote:
Well that does it.  I know from experience that no matter what else I hear, that guitar groove is going to be with me the rest for the day

 
No guitar — that's a clavinet.
direct from the source.....
HOW am I supposed to work with this on?

{#Bananasplit} 
 jagdriver wrote:

AGREED!

 
Good music is good music regardless of outside influences.

A timeless song in any and all situations. 
Dancing...
 thewiseking wrote:
rendered unlistenable by commerical radio. any and all positive associations ruined. beware folks, those "cool kids" with the tattoos are now working at ad agencies and destroying our music by linking it to automobile advertisements etc. 

 
"our" music?
 thewiseking wrote:
rendered unlistenable by commerical radio. any and all positive associations ruined. 
 
AGREED!
 Bobert_ParkCity wrote:
So, when this came out, I had a paper route.  Stevie lived right down the street, in Alpine NJ.  Yes, I delivered the Suburbanite and The Daily Record to Mr Wonder, himself.  Yeah, yeah, I know - someone must have read them to him....

I'm long gone but he is still there according to Wikipedia.

PS Bill Evans was on my route - and I cut his lawn, too.   

 
Alpine? I had no idea he lived there - I didn't think very many people lived there at all. It was directly across the river from where I grew up; we used to go to that little park near the Boat Basin when we were kids. Anyhow, cool story about Stevie and Evans.
 Bobert_ParkCity wrote:
So, when this came out, I had a paper route.  Stevie lived right down the street, in Alpine NJ.  Yes, I delivered the Suburbanite and The Daily Record to Mr Wonder, himself.  Yeah, yeah, I know - someone must have read them to him....

I'm long gone but he is still there according to Wikipedia.

PS Bill Evans was on my route - and I cut his lawn, too.   

 
That's astounding! Was this the Tin Pan Alley of Alpine, N.J.?
 
 Bobert_ParkCity wrote:
So, when this came out, I had a paper route.  Stevie lived right down the street, in Alpine NJ.  Yes, I delivered the Suburbanite and The Daily Record to Mr Wonder, himself.  Yeah, yeah, I know - someone must have read them to him....

I'm long gone but he is still there according to Wikipedia.

PS Bill Evans was on my route - and I cut his lawn, too.   

 
YOWZAH!!! Did you ever meet him Bobert? was he a good tipper when it was time to collect? wow that's super 

Stevie is Excellent. 
rendered unlistenable by commerical radio. any and all positive associations ruined. beware folks, those "cool kids" with the tattoos are now working at ad agencies and destroying our music by linking it to automobile advertisements etc. 
This is absolutely timeless.
 Bobert_ParkCity wrote:
So, when this came out, I had a paper route.  Stevie lived right down the street, in Alpine NJ.  Yes, I delivered the Suburbanite and The Daily Record to Mr Wonder, himself.  Yeah, yeah, I know - someone must have read them to him....

I'm long gone but he is still there according to Wikipedia.

PS Bill Evans was on my route - and I cut his lawn, too.   

 
In the words of my niece's little foreign friend, "you are a cool" ;^ )
So, when this came out, I had a paper route.  Stevie lived right down the street, in Alpine NJ.  Yes, I delivered the Suburbanite and The Daily Record to Mr Wonder, himself.  Yeah, yeah, I know - someone must have read them to him....

I'm long gone but he is still there according to Wikipedia.

PS Bill Evans was on my route - and I cut his lawn, too.   
I've known this song intimately for decades, but I'm sitting at work today with headphones on and it still sounds as fresh and as funky as just about anything I have ever heard.

Happy New Year everyone.
 thewiseking wrote:
Rendered completely unlistenable due to overplay and advertising use. The opening, which once inspired, now induces nausea.
 
Errr. Just turn off the TV and commercial radio. Simples. 
 DaidyBoy wrote:
Still as sharp and tight as the day it was born.  Tremendous and utterly godlike.  Not a bum note anywhere.

 
Right on DaidyBoy!  Timeless High Quality
Destroyed by overplay. There is so much more on this album. Please play it.
I just don't get tired of this. "8".
When I was little, I thought the lyrics were, "When you believe in things that you don't understand, then you're a sucker."  LOL!  {#Clap}
Well that does it.  I know from experience that no matter what else I hear, that guitar groove is going to be with me the rest for the day
Mmm, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah
Hee, hee, hee, hee, hee, hee

Great Banana 
Funky Master Jammer! Yes! {#Bananajam}

And the horn section - man I could listen to that kind of sweet soulful groove all day long.
 thewiseking wrote:
Rendered completely unlistenable due to overplay and advertising use. The opening, which once inspired, now induces nausea.
 
I feel your pain...
... yet for me this song is one of the very few that manages to "keep the groove" when I hear it on the radio despite the beer ads, etc.  If that's not "godlike" I don't know what is. 

I do think one feature is the drum intro, which always catches my ear on the first or second beat. 
That comment should have been for the Elvis Costello song. stupid app
I'd never really listened to the baseline on this song before. It's all over the place, in a good way
Jeff Beck can really come up with a great drum groove !!
Takes me back to 6th Grade, cutting through the gap in the fence with a buddy on the way to school, singing lines from this all the way...
Rendered completely unlistenable due to overplay and advertising use. The opening, which once inspired, now induces nausea.
 lissen wrote:
Thank you for this manna from the gods.

 
It's Godlike for me.
 Bozo wrote:

BUT the version of this song by Beck, Bogart, and Appice kicks ass!!!

 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_zz1RzTDzoE

This ain't a half bad version either featuring Mr. Beck.


had the joy of watching stevie trade placeses with his drummer at a show at the old filmore, never missed a beat,, note or move .ass kicking drummer two.{#Bananapiano}{#Drummer}
My only problem is deciding which is better. Superstition or Sir Duke. An impossible choice. Both pefrection.
Name that song in one measure of drum beats.
Thank you for this manna from the gods.
 lemmoth wrote:
Fascinating history of the origins of this song from AMG:

"While working on Wonder's next album, Talking Book, at New York recording studio Electric Lady, Cecil and Margouleff were producing a LP for guitarist Jeff Beck. Beck heard "Maybe Your Baby" and asked if he could cover it on his album. Wonder refused but offered to write another song for the phenomenal guitarist. After the song, now titled "Superstition," was finished, Wonder changed his mind because he knew it was the hit that he was looking for. The singer/songwriter's reversal was bad luck for the relationship between Beck, Cecil, and Margouleff, who stopped working together after that, though "Superstition" was good luck for the Wonder/Cecil/Margouleff partnership. Written and produced by Wonder, "Superstition" sat at number one R&B for three weeks and hit number one pop in early 1973."

 
BUT the version of this song by Beck, Bogart, and Appice kicks ass!!!

This song is super duper...  we be dancing...
 
 DaidyBoy wrote:
Still as sharp and tight as the day it was born.  Tremendous and utterly godlike.  Not a bum note anywhere.

 
Pretty much this, exactly.
Rating: 1.  Far too much funk.  I have to work in the morning!
Still as sharp and tight as the day it was born.  Tremendous and utterly godlike.  Not a bum note anywhere.

Everybody in my church loves this song...
 
On my all time top ten!
hehhee - fun song for today - the world hasn't ended yet...!
Look at that rating curve!  And the overall rating!  Consensus! 
"He did "Superstition" that night, "for Johnny," and I'll never forget it."

Only the best can do that.
"i'm not superstitious. i'm only a little stitious."
I was doing afternoon drive in Corpus Christi in '71 when Stevie came through for a sold out concert. I was to introduce him, was running a tad late (getting prepared, don'tcha know?!) and zipped down the coast road in my '64 "Vette with the top down, and Stevie blasting on a custom 8 track I'd made at the station.

Pulled into my spot and humped it up the back steps (no ADA in those daze) with my full length brace on the right leg. The men's room was out of order, so everyone was using the ladies. Went over to wash my hands, standing next to a very attractive lady and said, "I just can't believe we're going to see him in person!" "Big fan?" she asked. "Oh, hell yes," I told her. "I've listened to him in many frames of mind with headphones in various locations." She understood. "Do you think he'll do all the old hits tonight?", I asked. "Probably some new ones as well," she replied.  and split.

Later, standing by the curtain waiting to introduce the man of the hour, that same lady came up..just appeared at my side, with Stevie. "Never got your name," she said. "Johnny..Johnny Marks," I sort of stammered out. "Johnny, this is Stevie. This is the young man I told you about from the lady's room," she told him. "It's a real pleasure to meet someone who can truly listen to my music," he said shaking my hand and giving me a big smile.

He did "Superstition" that night, "for Johnny," and I'll never forget it. 
 


Inspired.
Terrific song from his best period (through Hotter than July).
Godlike

Yes, great song without doubt!

Still - not really for me!

 

PS

...and where is WAS (NOT WAS)...?


 oldman wrote:
Must be an age thing
I am such a sucker for tight horns now 
 
making me horny
 johnjconn wrote:
Top 10 superstitions people rely on everyday
1.    Touching/knocking wood
2.    Crossing your fingers for good luck
3.    Avoiding walking under a ladder
4.    Not opening an umbrella inside
5.    Seeing a penny on the floor
6.    Breaking a mirror brings 7 years of bad luck
7.    Not putting new shoes on a table
8.    Listening to Radio Paradise to be happy
9.    13 being an unlucky number
10.   Having a lucky number
 
Some of us count #9 as a very lucky number, right Melanie ;^)
there can only be one score for this song: 10. 
We be chair dancin' in the accounting office, tapping our calculator keys to the bass line. {#Dance}
 johnjconn wrote:
Top 10 superstitions people rely on everyday
1.    Touching/knocking wood
2.    Crossing your fingers for good luck
3.    Avoiding walking under a ladder 
4.    Not opening an umbrella inside 
5.    Seeing a penny on the floor
6.    Breaking a mirror brings 7 years of bad luck
7.    Not putting new shoes on a table
8.    Listening to Radio Paradise to be happy
9.    13 being an unlucky number
10.   Having a lucky number
  

Aud wrote:


Substitute #8 with going to your place of worship and praying
 
Nope.  Let's leave #8 as it is.
 oldman wrote:
Must be an age thing
I am such a sucker for tight horns now 
 
+1
 johnjconn wrote:
Top 10 superstitions people rely on everyday
1.    Touching/knocking wood
2.    Crossing your fingers for good luck
3.    Avoiding walking under a ladder
4.    Not opening an umbrella inside
5.    Seeing a penny on the floor
6.    Breaking a mirror brings 7 years of bad luck
7.    Not putting new shoes on a table
8.    Listening to Radio Paradise to be happy
9.    13 being an unlucky number
10.   Having a lucky number
 

Substitute #8 with going to your place of worship and praying
 lemmoth wrote:

Grooviest song in the history of mankind  {#Dancingbanana}

 
I'd put it at the #2 grooviest song of all time, with Bill Withers' "Use Me" in the #1 slot.
Must be an age thing
I am such a sucker for tight horns now 
Fascinating history of the origins of this song from AMG:

"While working on Wonder's next album, Talking Book, at New York recording studio Electric Lady, Cecil and Margouleff were producing a LP for guitarist Jeff Beck. Beck heard "Maybe Your Baby" and asked if he could cover it on his album. Wonder refused but offered to write another song for the phenomenal guitarist. After the song, now titled "Superstition," was finished, Wonder changed his mind because he knew it was the hit that he was looking for. The singer/songwriter's reversal was bad luck for the relationship between Beck, Cecil, and Margouleff, who stopped working together after that, though "Superstition" was good luck for the Wonder/Cecil/Margouleff partnership. Written and produced by Wonder, "Superstition" sat at number one R&B for three weeks and hit number one pop in early 1973."
There are so many more GREAT Stevie songs that should be played on RP..This one gets plenty of commercial radio coverage.
 lemmoth wrote:

Grooviest song in the history of mankind  {#Dancingbanana}

 

Yes! If you're not dancing you're not breathing! Seriously, this song groooooves!

Grooviest song in the history of mankind  {#Dancingbanana}