Stevie Winwood

Stephen Lawrence Winwood (born 12 May 1948) is an English musician and songwriter whose genres include blue-eyed soul, rhythm and blues, blues rock and pop rock. Though primarily a guitarist, keyboard player and vocalist, prominent for his distinctive soulful high tenor voice, Winwood plays other instruments proficiently, including drums, mandolin, bass and saxophone.

Winwood achieved fame during the 1960s and 1970s as an integral member of three major bands: the Spencer Davis Group (1964–1967), Traffic (1967–1969 and 1970–1974) and Blind Faith (1969). During the 1980s, his solo career flourished and he had a number of hit singles, including “While You See a Chance” (1980) from the album Arc of a Diver and “Valerie” (1982) from Talking Back to the Night (“Valerie” became a hit when it was re-released with a remix from Winwood’s 1987 compilation album Chronicles). His 1986 album Back in the High Life marked his career zenith, with hit singles including “Back in the High Life Again“, “The Finer Things“, and the US Billboard Hot 100 number one hit “Higher Love“. He found the top of the Hot 100 again with “Roll with It” (1988) from the album of the same name, with “Holding On” also charting highly the same year. Although his hit singles ceased after the 1980s, he continued to release new albums up to 2008, when Nine Lives, his latest album, was released.

In 2004, Winwood was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of Traffic. He has won two Grammy Awards and an Ivor Novello Award, and has been honored as BMI Icon. In 2008, Rolling Stone ranked Winwood number 33 on its list of 100 Greatest Singers of All Time.

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