Legendary singer and pianist Stevie Wonder is relocating to Ghana. The 22-time Grammy winner opened up about his decision to move out of the United States and settle down in Ghana during a November 2020 discussion with Oprah Winfrey, expressing his hope to live someplace where he feels valued.
Speaking during an episode of The Oprah Conversation, Wonder revealed his big move when talking about his hopes for America. He told Winfrey, "I promise you [America], if you do the right thing, I will give you this song. I will give it to you. You can have." He said he wants to "see this nation smile again. And I want to see it before I leave to travel to move to Ghana because I'm going to do that." Winfrey expressed shock at the announcement, asking, "you're gonna move permanently to Ghana?" Wonder responded by confirming, "I am", before going on to express concern about his family, stating, "I don't want to see my children's, children's children have to say 'Oh please like me, please respect me, please know that I am important, please value me.' What is that?"
Why I Will Be Relocating To Ghana Permanently - Stevie Wonder pic.twitter.com/XLu7u3dvrc— Punch Newspapers (@MobilePunch) February 19, 2021
Although the news may come as a shock, the decision has reportedly been a long one in the making. According to Hot New Hip Hop, Wonder told the International Association of African American Music in 1994 that he planned to one day move to Ghana because "there's more of a sense of community." The outlet reported that over the years, Wonder has also visited Ghana on numerous occasions.
Elsewhere in his discussion, Wonder opened up about what he called a "dangerous" era in the United States, telling Winfrey that "it feels more dangerous than ever before." He said the U.S. has "allowed love to go out and negativity to come in." He said all Americans need "five years of atonement," and challenged Americans to "take the time out, look at the wrongs and the things that have happened, and say, 'We're going to fix this.'"
Along with being a legendary singer and songwriter, Wonder is a decades-long humanitarian. The Oprah Magazine notes that he played a major role in the 18-year fight to make Martin Luther King's birthday a federal holiday. He has also been vocal on other matters, including the ongoing coronavirus pandemic as well as the protests calling for an end to systemic racism and police violence that occurred across the nation over the summer. At the time, Wonder said the protests were "not another digital viral trend moment or hashtag. It is our lives, literally. Yes, all lives do matter. But they only matter when Black lives matter, too."