At first I was going to do a tribute podcast to the late great Prince Roger Nelson [RIP] but as I set out to sample his music I thought about the copyright infringement laws that I would be breaking. At first I was like, eff that! Prince was my man and who's gonna get bent out of shape if a small fry like me puts his music in my podcast? But as I combed through YouTube and saw how they were blocking content and muting his music it resonated for me that that might not be my best idea. So instead, I pay tribute to the man who's music guided some of my steps in life via blog. If you know his music [like so many of you do] then you can let it play in your mind as I fondly speak of it here.
I was [am] a Prince fan. I went to all but his last concert at the Tower Theater in Upper Darby - PA, The Electric Factory in Philadelphia and one at the Wachovia [yeah, that's a throwback for some of y'all] in South Philly. Dawned in purple, screaming my head off and singing loudly off key - yep [teeth suck], that was me. You see when I was first introduced to his music I was still in high school. This cool chick Marilyn Gee who was in many of my classes would be all decked out in her Prince paraphernalia and me [being the nerd that I was] wanted to be down too. She [Marliyn] was just too damn cool! So, silently, I set out on my discovery of the Purple Prince so I, too, could be cool. My mother [on the other hand] was not having it. I could have a poster of Michael Jackson [RIP] but after she found out that Little Red Corvette wasn't really about a car things went left. So my posters and tribute to Mr. Nelson had to come down; parental censorship at its best. But my love affair with his music just continued to blossom and grow from there; albeit it had to be a secret. And truth be told, he was one of my best kept secrets.
Yesterday the text messages came. I was already home sick but the news sickened me more. The first text, "Prince is gone" followed by the "are you okay" and "I know he was your dude". Yes! He was my dude. I went into shock. Kinda' like the shock I went into with Michael Jackson. Yes, you could have a love affair with both - and I did. So, like everyone else, I rushed to social media - Facebook, google and TMZ. 'Cause if TMZ says its true then so be it. Say it isn't so.
My heart aches! To the many people who will not understand how you can mourn the loss of someone who you really did not know I say I did know him. I knew him through his music. He spoke to me and millions of others. His music pushed limits. Lyrically he said things that touched our minds, our hearts and souls. Like what girl doesn't want her guy to say to her "If God one day struck me blind your beauty I'd still see" [Adore]? There are days that I feel like "the mailman put my million dollar check in someone else's box" [Pop Life]. Sometimes I'm a cool weirdo like Cynthia Rose [Starfish & Coffee]. Every once in awhile you want someone with a wit quicker than yours; that's me [Dorothy Parker]. "If I was your best friend would you let me take care of you and do all the things that only a best friend can" [chills] was my favorite verse [If I Was Your Girlfriend]. "If we can not make babies maybe we can make some time" [Erotic City], "turn the lights off, strike a candle" [Insatiable], "take me baby, kiss me all over, play with my love" [Do Me Baby], "I just need your body [baby] from dusk till dawn" [Kiss] - all panty droppers! And who could ignore the first ode to the THOTS [Little Red Corvette] - slow your asses down. "Do I believe in God? Do I believe in me?" [Controversy]. And who has never partied like it was 1999? I could go on and on with the lyrics. They will forever be with us; with me.
I am saddened by the reality that there will be no new words from the Purple genius but I am comforted that the words that he did leave behind have and will continue to transcend across generations. With much respect and wishes of eternal resting in peace - Prince Roger Nelson you will be missed.