Thursday, June 7, 2007

His Purple Reign...

Happy 49th Birthday to his Royal Badness of Music, Prince!

Damn, I can't believe the Purple One is 49 years old. It seems like yesterday I singing on high the beatitudes of 1999, Purple Rain, and other albums. Prince is truly a music genius. I remember every lyric to just about every song he ever wrote. I have most of his albums with the except of ones release recently. I event have his infamous "symbol" album from his period when he was the Artist Formerly Known as Prince, TAPKAF, when he was fighting for independence from Record Label Warner Brothers Music.

In 1993, during negotiations regarding the release of Prince's album The Gold Experience, a battle between Warner Bros. and Prince ensued, struggling over the artistic and financial control of Prince’s output. During that time, Prince only appeared in public with the word “SLAVE” written on his cheek. Prince explained his name change as follows:

The first step I have taken towards the ultimate goal of emancipation from the chains that bind me to Warner Bros. was to change my name from Prince to . Prince is the name that my Mother gave me at birth. Warner Bros. took the name, trademarked it, and used it as the main marketing tool to promote all of the music that I wrote. The company owns the name Prince and all related music marketed under Prince. I became merely a pawn used to produce more money for Warner Bros.… I was born Prince and did not want to adopt another conventional name. The only acceptable replacement for my name, and my identity, was , a symbol with no pronunciation, that is a representation of me and what my music is about. This symbol is present in my work over the years; it is a concept that has evolved from my frustration; it is who I am. It is my name.

Prince has always been a music entity unto to his own. Often doing controversial projects, Prince's reign over music has spanned four decades. For You, his first album from 1978, was a talented work.

Prince was born Prince Rogers Nelson on June 7, 1958 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. His music has spanned myriad styles: from his early material, rooted in R&B, funk, and soul, he has constantly expanded his musical palette throughout his career, absorbing many other genres including New Wave, pop, rock, blues, jazz, and hip hop. The distinctive characteristics of the early-to-mid 1980s work which brought him to super-stardom (including sparse and industrial-sounding drum machine arrangements, and the use of synthesizer riffs to serve the role traditionally occupied by horn riffs in earlier R&B, funk and soul music) became known as the "Minneapolis sound," which proved heavily influential.

Rock on Prince.

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President Barack Obama!