We woke this morning to news that one of the most prolific pop stars on the planet – Prince is dead at 57.
It came as a shock really. Damn, I never got to see him in concert! Prince joins a long list of idols I have lost in recent times. Ones that I thought I had plenty of time to see perform when they next did a tour. Michael Jackson, David Bowie, James Brown, even Kurt Cobain.
But Prince was different. He was like an enigma. The coolest dude on the earth whose life changing music still lives on. In the shops this morning they were all playing their favourite Prince songs in tribute. As I watched my 2 year old daughter dancing to Raspberry Beret I felt such a great pang of sadness that she will only know Prince through us, her parents. His era is over. He now becomes another one of the legends of our time, he shone so bright, but is gone much too soon. A supernova.
Prince was one of the most mysterious, and multi-talented artists of our time. His career ups and downs have given us 39 solo albums, and countless more that he produced under pseudonyms. He sang, produced and played all of the instruments on his first 5 albums!
Prince Rogers Nelson changed his name to Prince, then to the self-indulgent unpronounceable ‘symbol’ the artist formerly known as Prince, and thankfully, back to Prince again. Yet we have always forgiven his smug superiority for the simple fact that he is superior! His feats are almost inhuman. Perhaps this is a fact that contributed to his untimely death at age 57. He worked so hard at giving us all of that amazing music, that maybe he worked himself to a premature death. What Prince achieved in his lifetime would take anyone else 5 lifetimes.
As more details emerge about how Prince died I wonder if we are going to discover alternate theories and causative factors. Was he a victim of his own success? Will he be compared to Michael Jackson and so many other young stars of our generation who had addictions to prescription drugs? I hope not. I hope that the image of Prince stays untainted and poor Prince simply died overnight from a virus that the rest of us could normally shake off with plenty of rest and fluids. But in the quest for greatness, perhaps he neglected his own health for the benefit of his millions of fans.
Thanks Prince. Thanks for the music. Thanks for being to uber-cool that you are not even on Spotify.
I will remember fondly getting down to ‘Cream’ at my school discos, ‘Purple Rain’ and ‘Little Red Corvette’ ‘Diamonds and Pearls’, ‘Kiss’ and ‘When Doves Cry’ are some of my favourite songs of all time.
Sadly missed and always remembered. What a legacy you have left behind.