Jun 21, 2019

His Royal Highness, The Purple One

It’s hard to say exactly how I first heard of Prince and the album Purple Rain. It might have been way back in elementary school when the DJ at the skating rink would play “When Doves Cry”, it may have been hearing “Little Red Corvette” on the radio. However, it happened, he made an impression on me. My parents were woefully ignorant of just how dirty Prince was and bought me the Purple Rain cassette with no issues. They were more worried about the pentagram on Mötley Crüe’s Shout at the Devil than they were about me learning what “Darling Nikki” did with magazines in the hotel lobby. To say that I got a bit of an education from Purple Rain, the cassette and the movie, is an understatement. Luckily, I was still innocent enough to not realize a lot of what I was hearing until later years. While Prince went on to have a long and fruitful career after that album, Purple Rain was always one of my favorites. I’m still not sure how most of his videos even made it onto MTV considering the censors back in those days. I guess MTV was much more worried about youngsters screaming “I wanna rock!” than learning about one-night stands and dirty sex. Although there are rumors that Tipper Gore started the PMRC after hearing her daughter playing “Darling Nikki” and it’s included on their list of the fifteen filthiest songs. Over the years I’ve broadened my musical horizons, but I’ve always had a fondness for Prince. As I’ve said before I’m not a music professional, I have zero talent for instruments or vocals. I judge music by how it makes me feel. The Purple Rain album always made me feel something. Sometimes good, sometimes bad and sometimes sexy; but each song reached me in some way.

May 24, 2019

Around the World In A Day Creates A Kaleidoscope World of Prince’s Music

I was 14 years old when I bought the cassette tape of Prince and the Revolution’s Around the World in a Day. The first thing I noticed when I bought the album is the beautiful cover art. The album cover art used to be a big deal when albums were sold as long-playing records. The cover art for this album shows Prince along with his band the Revolution and the accompanying kaleidoscopic riot of colors and letters written in psychedelic fonts. In a way, it was a message to the listener that this album was going to take one on a mind trip of the range of Prince’s musicality – and he shows a lot of it. Prince was always prolific, yet this album strangely, only has nine songs – and God bless him for it. I think that is why it is my most favorite album of his. Every song has a certain palette to it and trimming this collection to just nine songs made it easier for me to relish and enjoy each song, so much so that when I played them again, more than three decades after I first bought the album, I found them just as enjoyable as the first time I heard them. It actually puts these songs in a good context as they were written before Prince had those head-on collisions with his record company – which made it harder for non-Americans to access his latest work. Remember, in the 90s, we didn’t have Amazon or streaming services, so if Prince released his new work, we’d have to wait for stocks to reach our local Music One store here – and if they do, the merchandising department of Music One here only buys limited copies, so that they are usually out of stock – which was very irritating! I remember I had to fill out forms to order those latter albums – that’s why I lost touch on Prince’s music towards the noughties and until the day of his death.

Written by @tonyfabelous from Fabelousity

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