Motown legend Stevie Wonder last night (6 July) told his audience at London’s Hyde Park that he will soon take a hiatus from music for a kidney transplant operation. Wonder, 69, revealed the news as he concluded his headline performance in the Barclaycard Presents British Summer Hyde Park concert series.
The star had just played ‘Superstition’ when he made the announcement. “I’m going to be doing three shows then taking a break,” he said, telling fans he wanted to stop rumours spreading about his health. “I’m having surgery. I’m going to have a kidney transplant at the end of September this year. I came here to give you my love and to thank you for yours. You ain’t gotta hear no rumours about us, I’m all good, I’m all good.”
He added: “I want you to know, I came here to give you my love and thank you for your love. I love you and God bless you.” A donor for the operation has already been found.
Wonder’s set featured many of his best-loved songs including ‘Sir Duke,’ ‘I Wish.’ ‘Living For The City’ and ‘I Just Called To Say I Love You.’ He also paid tribute to several deceased musical heavyweights including Bob Marley, with a nod to ‘Jamming’ after his own ‘Masterblaster (Jammin’)’; Marvin Gaye, with ‘What’s Going On’; Otis Redding (‘Respect’), Amy Winehouse (‘Rehab’), Prince (‘When Doves Cry’) and John Lennon (‘Imagine’).
Stevie was also joined on stage for duets by Daley on ‘You And I (We Can Conquer The World)’ and Corinne Bailey Rae, who had played her own set earlier and returned to accompany him on ‘Creepin”. The Barclaycard Presents British Summer Hyde Park also featured his former Motown labelmate Lionel Richie, Lianne La Havas and others.
A star-filled audience for the occasion included Janet Jackson, Dua Lipa, Beverley Knight and such actors as Forest Whittaker, Tilda Swinton, David Schwimmer, Kate Beckinsale and David Walliams, as well as London Mayor Sadiq Kahn.
Explore our Stevie Wonder Artist Page.