By: Beau Daniels
I’ve heard for years that Stevie Wonder first offered the song “Superstition” to Jeff Beck and he wasn’t that interested and sat on it. Now, more is being exposed in the UCR story implying that the song was stolen from Beck. Quotes from Beck in the book “The Guitar Greats,” seem to express Stevie loved the song and needed it to finish his album, so Motown locked it down with an earlier release, “basically wrote it for me, but the story goes that he loved it a bit too much. No, he played it to Motown, and they said, ‘No way is Beck getting this song, it’s too good’ and, as they had the right to say what Stevie released at that time, I lost the song as an original.”
Wonder’s release before Beck’s shot to #1 and helped with Stevie’s crossover airplay on rock stations. The report has Stevie as saying, “I did promise him the song, and I’m sorry it happened and that he came out with some of the arrogant statements he came out with” but by the time Beck got around to recording 1975’s hit Blow by Blow, he had gotten far enough past it to include two Wonder compositions, ”Cause We’ve Ended as Lovers’ and ‘Thelonius.’
Jeff Beck appears to still have admiration of Stevie Wonder, but believes to have missed the opportunity for a big hit if his was the first release. More here.