Lately (Stevie Wonder song)

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Single by Stevie Wonder
from the album Hotter than July
Released 1981
Genre R&BSoul
Length 4:05
Label Tamla
Certification Silver (BPI)
Stevie Wonder singles chronology
"I Ain't Gonna Stand for It"
"Happy Birthday"
Jodeci chronology
"Let's Go Through the Motions"
"Cry for You"

"Lately" is a song by American singer Stevie Wonder recorded for his album Hotter than July (1980). The song was covered by R&B group Jodeci and released as a promotional single for the live album Uptown MTV Unplugged in June 1993.

Critical reception[edit]

Jason Elias at Allmusic praised the song, believing that unlike some of Wonder's similar material, "Lately" in particular hit all the perfect emotional and musical notes. Of the song's emotional power itself Elias stated, "it's enough to make a listener fall prey to an old-fashioned cry."[1]

Cover and sample versions[edit]

"Lately" was notably covered by R&B group Jodeci for the Uptown MTV Unplugged release in 1993. The group's version of the song was released as a promotional single, claiming the number one spot on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks charts as the group's fourth R&B number one hit. It was also Jodeci's highest peaking pop hit, reaching number four on the Billboard Hot 100.[2] It sold 900,000 copies and was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America.[3][4]

A jazz version of "Lately" as done by George Benson appeared on his 2000 album, Absolute Benson.

The song was also covered by English pop group S Club 7 and released as a bonus track on their album 7, released in 2000,[5] as well as by Will Martin on his album Inspirations, 2010.[6] South Korean ballad singer Sung Si Kyung has covered "Lately" at several of his concerts. The cover is also featured in his special album "Try to Remember." On American Idol, the song was performed by Season 1's finalist RJ Helton (Semi-finals - Wildcard Round), Season 3's John Stevens (Motown Week), Season 5's Melissa McGhee (Stevie Wonder Week), Season 10's Stefano Langone (Motown Week), Season 11's Colton Dixon (Stevie Wonder/Whitney Houston Week), and by Season 12's Amber Holcomb (Music of Detroit Week).

This song was also sampled in Rick Ross' song "Here I Am"

Chart performance[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Elias, Jason. ""Lately" Song review at Allmusic". Allmusic. Retrieved 2010-04-17. 
  2. ^ a b "allmusic ((( Jodeci > Charts & Awards > Billboard Singles )))". Allmusic. Retrieved 2010-04-17. 
  3. ^ "Best-Selling Records of 1993". Billboard (BPI Communications) 106 (3): 73. January 15, 1994. ISSN 0006-2510. Retrieved May 4, 2015. 
  4. ^ "American certifications – Jodeci – Lately". Recording Industry Association of America. 
  5. ^ Phares, Heather. "allmusic ((( 7 (Bonus Tracks) > Overview )))". Allmusic. Retrieved 2010-04-17. 
  6. ^ "Inspirations". Retrieved 2010-12-10. 
  7. ^ "allmusic ((( Hotter Than July > Charts & Awards > Billboard Singles )))". Allmusic. Retrieved 2010-04-17. 
  8. ^
  9. ^ "Billboard Top 100 - 1993". Retrieved 2010-08-27. 

External links[edit]