Song: "Pastime Paradise"
Writer and Performer: Stevie Wonder
Original Release: September 28, 1976
Album: Songs in the Key of Life
If I have written this before, it's always worth repeating: if you wish to understand modern music, you must know Stevie Wonder's work from the early- and mid-1970s. His legacy extends to pop, rock, R&B, hip-hop and beyond, both in terms of musical elements and technological innovation. "Pastime Paradise" was one of the first songs to use a synthesizer to sound like a full string section. The recording features both a gospel choir and Hare Krishna musicians as chanters and bell ringers.
"Pastime Paradise" has been sampled and covered by numerous musicians, most famously by Coolio in "Gangsta's Paradise":
"Weird" Al Yankovic, "Amish Paradise":
Want to hear all of the songs I have featured in a convenient playlist?
Enjoy: A Window Above
What are you listening to these days?