Raul Midon is often compared to Stevie Wonder, as much for his soulful singing style as for the fact that he is blind. But Midon is an original singer-songwriter whose particular brand of laid-back soul and pop reflects musical influences ranging from jazz to Latin folklore. Born to an Argentinean father and African-American mother, Midon grew up in New Mexico and began playing flamenco guitar at an early age. He studied classical and jazz guitar at the University of Miami, and in 1999 recorded an album of Latin standards, Gracias a la Vida. Weary of the Latin scene, Midon moved to New York, and in 2005 Manhattan Records released State of Mind, produced by Arif Mardin and his son Joe. It was followed by 2007's World Within a World.