Monday, June 07, 2004

Happy Birthday 2 U.


It's Prince's 46th birthday and I would like to take this moment to remind y'all how g.d. brilliant the man is. After years of being hated on, Prince is actually back en vogue. He's on magazine covers and is in the midst of a massively successful greatest hits tour. His latest album, Musicology, is his best selling record in over a decade.
But it's just not the same.
True, Musicology is light-years beyond the tepid Jesus-centric quiet storm bullshit that he's been selling on the Internet for the past 5 years. But the music just doesn't hold a candle to his visionary work in the 80s.
If you don't own (or haven't recently listened to) Prince's 80s work... It's well worth a spin. Here are some tracks that you might not know, but are worth seeking out:

"Paisley Park" (on Around The World In A Day.)
A lot of people can't dig on A.T.W.I.A.D. and I think it's a shame. The album--and especially this track--sounds as if Prince added The Magical Mystery Tour to his list of obsessions (the others being pussy and God), amped up the mysticism, kept the well-oiled drum machine humming and delivered his vision of psychedelic funk.

"If I Was Your Girlfriend" (on Sign 'O' The Times and The Hits 2.)
One of Prince's most unlikely hits. A warped, slowgrinding loop backs Prince's tortured falsetto and weird gender-fucked lyrics. Michelangelo Matos argues that this track and "The Ballad of Dorothy Parker" (also from S.O.T.T. and well worth a listen) created the genre of music we now call trip-hop/downtempo/chillout/whatever. I'm inclined to agree.

"She's Always In My Hair" (on The Hits/The B-Sides.)
Hey Outkast, could you start paying Prince the money you owe him for taking this song?

"17 Days" (on The Hits/The B-Sides)
Originally the B-side to "When Doves Cry," this track is possibly the best Prince song that the general public doesn't know. All melancholic pimp lyrics, propulsive percussion and chewy synth.


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