A few months ago, I had just received Thom Hartmann’s outstanding book entitled “The Crash of 2016”. It was, and is, a profound work. In any event, I got on air with Thom to express my admiration for the book as it was extremely well written. Somewhere along the conversation, I told Thom that his writing skills made me want to hang up my ink, and likened the experience to when I saw Prince in concert during the Purple Rain tour here in Los Angeles. It was at the Fabulous Forum in 1985.

Now, I am a pretty fair guitarist. I mean, I was good enough (at that time, anyway) to work my way through undergraduate school by having many an odd job but, mainly, by playing music with my band in local, smoky jazz dives. However, that night, when I saw Prince play the guitar, I seriously had doubts as to whether or not I was even worthy of looking at a guitar…let alone calling myself a guitarist. As I recounted the story to Thom, he told me about a friend of his that actually has one of Prince’s first guitars on display in his home. Thom said he was awestruck.

No caca.

Though noted for his popular music, few people outside of musicians truly realize how brilliant that brother was. Composing, arranging, orchestrating, transposing, improvising, even contracts and an uncanny understanding of the brutal music business…the dude was a savant. But, more than anything, he was a virtuoso guitarist in the musicianship stratosphere of Jimmy Hendrix, Jeff Beck, Chick Corea, Mozart, Miles Davis, George Duke and John “C” (that would be Coltrane for the unenlightened).

That night in 1985 was an epiphany; a soul stirring spiritual experience. After all, Purple Rain is a Gospel tune; a fact that few people realize. Listen closely to the lyrics: “I never meant to cause you any problems, I never meant to cause you any pain…you say you want a leader, but you can’t seem to make up your mind. I think you better come, let me guide you, to the purple rain”.

You defined my early adulthood, brother. People throw the word “genius” around with reckless abandon. You were truly a genius and someone I truly loved. I will miss you, and look forward to seeing you again. In the meantime, I will console myself with the musical legacy that you bestowed upon your loyal subjects; of which I am one.

Rest in peace, sweet Prince.

Comments

Jeebbo's picture
Jeebbo 3 years 20 weeks ago
#1

I know nothing about Prince, I didn't care at all for his music. I'm more of a "Four B's" guy myself ... Bach, Beethoven, Brahms and the Beatles. You mentioned Mozart, and yes, he certainly belongs in that musicianship stratosphere you spoke of. But there's something totally unrelated that I'd like to ask you about, Kenyatta. I try to call in to Thom's radio show occasionally and ALMOST ALWAYS I just get that recorded message that says "All of the lines are busy, or we are not currently on the air." I've actually managed to get through and get on the air only about a half dozen times since the very first time I called in a couple days before the 2004 election. And yet, it seems that you get through and get on the air ALMOST EVERY DAY. You, and a couple other people, Norma from Montgomery, Alabama is one of those. So my question is, HOW do you get through so often? Do you have another number you call that only a select few know about? Do you just start speed-dialing the moment the show goes on the air and not give up? How do you do it? I'm mystified.

-- Ron

NatTurnersGhost's picture
NatTurnersGhost 3 years 20 weeks ago
#2

#1 the post is about PRINCE, homeboy. Strange you knew nothing about the man, didn't like his music but yet you respond with some way out B.S. Maybe you would have better luck by staying on topic. Seems like you need to share your frustrations with Mr. Hartmann.

Brother Kenyatta, I still don't believe the Prince is gone. Hope to see you at the memorial later tonight. You better show bro.

Jeebbo's picture
Jeebbo 3 years 20 weeks ago
#3

I have been wanting to ask Kenyatta this question for a very long time and this is the first time I ever have had the opportunity. That I had to go off-topic to do it is not my fault. This is the opportunity I had, and I took it. -- Ron

rs allen 3 years 20 weeks ago
#4

I missed the Prince genre, as I remember it at the time (late 70's thru to the early 90's) I was into the Afro pop and world music scenes so Prince's end of the spectrum was lost for me during that time.

I do have one his albums though, I believe it was the first thing he'd done after he finally won his war against the record label task masters/thieves. He may have even still had his slave tat when he did it, but at any rate I bought the album because I remember a couple of songs from his early records that did get my attention and the 'new' album had some interest for me probably because I'd heard strains on it of some complex poly rhythms that drew my ear I'd heard on the local college station.

I'll dig it out and play it tonight for solidity and in remembrance.

NatTurnersGhost's picture
NatTurnersGhost 3 years 20 weeks ago
#5

Brother Al! Missed you, man. Unlike Brother Kenyatta I don't play an instrument but I loved the Prince. We were in our late teens when he broke wide. Great memorial last night in Los Angeles. Still hard to believe, really tripped Kenyatta out, ain't seen him like that since Miles Davis died. I think it was his age that took everybody for a loop.

mrs.vonderhoffholz's picture
mrs.vonderhoffholz 3 years 20 weeks ago
#6

I have as I write am /have been watching the SNL tribute to Prince..................seems to me your anti-white racialists crap/violence is sooo sooo fu...ing off base ...to anything you wanna now wallow in Prince love, is so grossly grorss.....

Prince was about Ev ERYBODY,one,sex,gender, religion, etc....

WHILE super-suiporting extra for "blacks"......

he believed in raised EVERYONE UP,

not as you black racistas supports, which is to take everyone down.

so fo you'all to cry over Prince's death is SO disguting.......

Prince was all about RAISING EVERYONE, even if they were already raised.....

Prince was about a race to the top...race, pun intended?) oh prob too comlex for your limited narcisi=stic intellect to comprehend

Kenyatta et al ilk are about dragging to the bottom, blacks get equality by diminishing others rather than raising everyone...

You disgust me kenyaatta, your narciissitc admiration of Prince? of cause you couldn't out-guitar him, ?? wow such narcissism, anti-social concept........puke you insult all people-

puke.YOU INSULT EVERYTING HE WORKED FOR

PRINCE was all about EVERYBODY, EVERONE, reguardless of sex,faith, class......or RACE

don't waste your crocodile tears, you charlatan

NatTurnersGhost's picture
NatTurnersGhost 3 years 20 weeks ago
#7

MLK YOU HAVE BEEN BANNED for polluting the threads and doing the same crap you are doing now. Any fool can recognize that psychotic, fragmented and poorly written garbage. BANNED!

Beelzebubfoe's picture
Beelzebubfoe 3 years 20 weeks ago
#8

WOW! Someone's off their meds. I was a big Prince fan as well GHOST, KENYATTA, but some of his music was kinda strange at times. He certainly was gifted and I will miss the brother too.

rs allen 3 years 20 weeks ago
#9

reply #5

Likewise brother Nat, been miss'n ya'll around here. Still looking for brother Kenyatta's site off and on but to no avail as of yet. But hey, I know life is larger than this rather limited form of virtual reality. I won't be spending I much time here a lot any more myself. About a week ago I finally got my eyes back, so now I start getting my life back. I can safely drive again and everything!

Listened to the old Prince album Sat. night. Yes indeed there were a couple of songs on it that would have grabbed my attention but I remember why I bought the album when the last cut cued up; " The Sacrifice of Victor".........

http://www.downvids.net/prince-sacrifice-of-victor-495434.html

R. Kenyatta's picture
R. Kenyatta 3 years 20 weeks ago
#10

Brother Allen. First let me tell you I am delighted that you got your "eyes" back. Not sure what that means, but you are a real luminary and someone that all Black People in America can be proud of. It is, and has been, an honor to be in your midst. As for MN, I have just been overwhelmed with all manner of stuff. "Mini-Me" is a junior and one of the top students in her school, So we have had pictures, college entrance exams, yearbooks, proms, speech competitions...all requiring lots of time, and money. Along with that I have my firm to run and SLE to manage. The site is evermore complex, but we are getting there...slowly. We have hired a webmaster and that has been a major asset. Additionally, I write for several other venues that compensate me, so I have deadlines.

Fun times.

As for this site, you may recall the psychopath that attacked my children a few months ago. Of all the direct threats, name calling and vile Blackism that I have experienced on this site, that was a new low. There are many reasons why I am sensitive about children. As for the personal attacks, I not only expect them...I purposefully incite them; but it is a real lowlife that attacks children. Subsequent to that, I took some time to ponder whether or not I even wanted to continue contributing here. Several of my confidants told me !*#@ this site, but I decided that to do so would be capitulation to a bunch of Blackist bastards attempting to assert their white privilege. Also, I have a deep and abiding respect for Thom Hartmann because, in many ways, Thom has been instrumental in me "finding myself" (so to speak) as a writer and activist. Even when people have attempted to assert their white privilege and intimidate him, he has stood firm, as he realizes that there are few black voices here. Ergo, if for no other reason than spite, I will continue to rock the Roman's boat.

NatTurnersGhost's picture
NatTurnersGhost 3 years 20 weeks ago
#11

Bro Al...man! I wasn't hip to that song by the Prince. That bad boy is BUMPIN!

Kenyatta you gotta see this, if you ain't already hip.

NatTurnersGhost's picture
NatTurnersGhost 3 years 20 weeks ago
#12

Rock the vote, and Roman's boat! LMAO! You crack me up, homie.

mrs.vonderhoffholz's picture
mrs.vonderhoffholz 3 years 20 weeks ago
#13

Rock the vote?? Mr Kinyatta has braged in past, how he's NEVER voted.....confusing

thankyou,

mrs.vonderhoffholz

rs allen 3 years 20 weeks ago
#14

reply #10

It shouldn't have been no big thing man, but the SS really screwed up my added-on plans for my Medicare (that I had been paying for right along). So while I was straightening that snafu out I was going blind because of advanced cataracts. It got to the point where everything was like trying to see through a fogged up car windshield. I couldn't work, I couldn't play/train with my dogs, I couldn't read anything beyond the computer and didn't dare drive outside of the slow back roads within 2 or 3 miles. BUT HEY, now I'm a bionic man and I can see again!

I figured the MN site got put on the back burner in the business of life. In the larger scheme of things one does need to sort the priorities. If it happens cool, if not, shrug our life and struggle will go on brother, no?

I'm heartened to see you've found the time to post again.

R. Kenyatta's picture
R. Kenyatta 3 years 20 weeks ago
#15

Brother Allen, your humor is a source of constant mirth for me. I caught that "SS" thang. Still laughing at that one. Stick with me on MN, I have thousands of dollars poured into the design and deployment and "it shall be done"!

I am ecstatic to know you are on the mend and still with me (us).

Brother Turner, I was already hip to "Sacrifice", that was Chucky D in the background (NPG). Word is that they are already making the cast for Prince's star on the Hollywood walk of fame.

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