Fulfillingness' First Finale

Fulfillingness' First Finale
Studio album by Stevie Wonder
Released July 22, 1974
Recorded Record Plant Studios and Westlake Recording Studios in Los Angeles; Media Sound and Electric Lady Studios in New York City
Genre Soul[1]
Length 42:33
Label Tamla
Producer Stevie Wonder, Robert Margouleff and Malcolm Cecil
Stevie Wonder chronology
Fulfillingness' First Finale
Songs in the Key of Life
Singles from Fulfillingness' First Finale
  1. "You Haven't Done Nothin'"
    Released: August 1974
  2. "Boogie On Reggae Woman"
    Released: November 1974

Fulfillingness' First Finale is a 1974 album by Stevie Wonder; widely considered one of the albums from his "classic period".[2][3][4] Released on July 22, 1974 on the Tamla label, it is Wonder's nineteenth album overall, and seventeenth studio album. According to Billboard magazine, it was Wonder's first studio album to top the Pop Albums chart where it remained for two weeks, while it was his third album to top the R&B/Black Albums chart where it spent nine non-consecutive weeks.[5]

Subsequent to the epic sweep and social consciousness of Innervisions, this set projected a reflective, decidedly somber tone. The musical arrangements used in several songs while masterly could be considered sparse in comparison to others among his 1970s masterworks, evident especially in the bleak "They Won't Go When I Go" and understated "Creepin'". While largely a stripped down, more personal sounding record, Wonder had not completely foregone social commentary on the world around him. The No. 1 hit "You Haven't Done Nothin'" launched a pointed criticism of the Nixon administration bolstered by funky clavinet, drum machine, and a Jackson 5 cameo.

The album received three Grammy Awards, including Album of the Year, in 1974.


Professional ratings
Review scores
The Austin Chronicle[7]
Christgau's Record GuideA–[8]
Encyclopedia of Popular Music[9]
The Great Rock Discography7/10[9]
Los Angeles Times[10]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide[12]
The Village VoiceB+[13]

Fulfillingness' First Finale won Grammy Awards for Best Male Pop Vocal, Best Male Rhythm and Blues Vocal Performance (for "Boogie On Reggae Woman"), and Album of the Year in 1974.

Track listing

No. TitleWriter(s) Length
1. "Smile Please"  Wonder 3:28
2. "Heaven Is 10 Zillion Light Years Away"  Wonder 5:02
3. "Too Shy to Say"  Wonder 3:29
4. "Boogie On Reggae Woman"  Wonder 5:13
5. "Creepin'"  Wonder 4:23
6. "You Haven't Done Nothin'"  Wonder 3:23
7. "It Ain't No Use"  Wonder 4:01
8. "They Won't Go When I Go"  Wonder, Yvonne Wright 5:59
9. "Bird of Beauty"  Wonder 3:48
10. "Please Don't Go"  Wonder 4:07
Total length:
Side One
  1. "Smile Please" – 3:28
  2. "Heaven Is 10 Zillion Light Years Away" – 5:02
    • Stevie Wonder – lead vocal, background vocal, Hohner clavinet, drums, Moog bass
    • Paul Anka – background vocal
    • Syreeta Wright – background vocal
    • Shirley Brewer – background vocal
    • Larry "Nastyee" Latimer – background vocal
  3. "Too Shy to Say" – 3:29
  4. "Boogie On Reggae Woman" – 5:14
    • Stevie Wonder – lead vocal, Fender Rhodes, piano, harmonica, drums, Moog bass
    • Rocky Dzidzornu – congas
  5. "Creepin'" – 4:22
Side Two
  1. "You Haven't Done Nothin'" – 3:23
    • Stevie Wonder – lead vocal, Hohner clavinet, bass drum, hi-hat, cymbal
    • Reggie McBride – electric bass
    • The Jackson 5 – background vocals
    • Robert Margouleff and Malcolm Cecil – synthesizers
    • Horns, drum machine – uncredited
  2. "It Ain't No Use" – 4:01
    • Stevie Wonder – lead vocal, background vocal, Fender Rhodes, drums, Moog bass
    • Lani Groves – background vocal
    • Minnie Riperton – background vocal
    • Deniece Williams – background vocal
  3. "They Won't Go When I Go" (Wonder, Yvonne Wright) – 5:58
    • Stevie Wonder – lead vocal, background vocal, piano, T.O.N.T.O. synthesizer
    • Bob and Malcolm - programming Moog
  4. "Bird of Beauty" – 3:48
    • Stevie Wonder – lead vocal, Fender Rhodes, Hohner clavinet, drums, percussions, Moog bass
    • Bobbye Hall – cuíca
    • Shirley Brewer – background vocal
    • Lani Groves – background vocal
    • Deniece Williams – background vocal
    • Sergio Mendes - Portuguese lyrics[14]
    • Drum machine - uncredited
  5. "Please Don't Go" – 4:07
    • Stevie Wonder – lead vocal, piano, Fender Rhodes, harmonica, handclaps, drums, hi-hat, Moog bass
    • Michael Sembello – acoustic guitar
    • The Persuasions – background vocal
    • Shirley Brewer – background vocal
    • Deniece Williams – background vocal

Cover versions

Chart positions

Billboard Chart information by Billboard VNU eMedia

Year Chart Position
1974 Soul Albums 1
Top LP's & Tape
Year Single Billboard
Hot 100
Hot Soul Singles
1974 "You Haven't Done Nothin'" 1 1
"Boogie on Reggae Woman" 3 1

See also


  1. "Fulfillingness' First Finale (1974)". Stereogum. Retrieved September 30, 2015.
  2. Bogdanov, Vladimir; Woodstra, Chris; Erlewine, Stephen Thomas (2001). All music guide: the definitive guide to popular music (4 ed.). Hal Leonard Corporation. pp. 447–448. ISBN 0-87930-627-0.
  3. Cramer, Alfred William (2009). Musicians and composers of the 20th century. 5. Salem Press. p. 1645. ISBN 1-58765-517-9.
  4. Brown, Jeremy K. (2010). Stevie Wonder: Musician. Black Americans of Achievement. Infobase Publishing. p. 57. ISBN 1-60413-685-5.
  5. "Fulfillingness' First Finale - Stevie Wonder". AllMusic. 1974-07-22. Retrieved 2012-02-17.
  6. Allmusic review
  7. Moser, Margaret. Review: Innervisions. The Austin Chronicle. Retrieved 2010-05-08.
  8. Christgau, Robert (1981). "Stevie Wonder". Christgau's Record Guide: Rock Albums of the Seventies. Ticknor & Fields. ISBN 0899190251. Retrieved September 26, 2015.
  9. 1 2 3 "Fulfillingness' First Finale". Acclaimed Music. Retrieved September 26, 2015.
  10. Hilburn, Robert (April 1, 2000). "Motown Releases Remind Us of Stevie Wonder's Impact". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved September 25, 2015.
  11. Q review
  12. Rolling Stone review
  13. Christgau, Robert (October 24, 1974). "Consumer Guide (49)". The Village Voice. New York. Retrieved September 26, 2015.
  14. "Bird of Beauty" partial Portuguese lyrics provided by Sergio Mendes

External links

Preceded by
461 Ocean Boulevard by Eric Clapton
Billboard 200 number-one album
September 14–27, 1974
Succeeded by
Bad Company by Bad Company
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