PRINCE (1958-2016)

Tanner Chambers

Man… 2016 just keeps getting more difficult. Prince had recently been battling a bad case of the flu, and the worldwide phenomenon has been officially pronounced dead at 57.

Much like David Bowie, Prince was a musician who stretched social boundaries and will always be recognized as one of the most iconic musicians of all time.

Prince has been a huge factor in modern music. His album, Purple Rain, was the major break. His intuition, creative drive, flamboyancy and development will place him as one of music’s all time greats.

Prince just released a new album, HITNRUN Phase 2; here’s the track “Baltimore.” In true Prince fashion, he ended his career on controversial issues and “Baltimore” is Prince pleading for peace instead of promoting violence.

Nick Oliver

Prince was one of the most unique souls on this planet who could have been successful at really anything artistic. Fortunately for us he chose to make music, and he chose to create his own lane and push the boundaries for what an artist could do and be.

Much like David Bowie prince pushed the social conversation on sexuality forward and paved the way for many artists to come.

Though he could have been seen often as eccentric or flamboyant prince was a true artist and a true personality who was unapologetically himself.

Now that this beautiful soul has left this world and journeyed to another, the Purple Rain lyrics “Honey I Know Times Are Changing” rings out truer now more than ever.

R.I.P. Prince I cant wait to hear you and Hendrix jamming out there somewhere in the universe.

Cameron Ford

When I was a child, there weren’t many classics I was introduced to by my parents: I still haven’t seen Jurassic Park, I only recently discovered Led Zeppelin. However, I do remember my father showing me two artists: David Bowie and Prince. I fell in love with those two, as many find it irresistible to do, but there was a distinct split between the two. With Bowie, I was attracted to his films more than his music, obsessing over Labyrinth, constantly rewinding our VHS copy of Christiane F until the magnetic tape more closely resembled a piece of Grateful Dead album art than a film. On the far end of that spectrum, there lay Prince, alone and out of reach by any other artist I’d ever heard. I listened to every bit of Prince I could get my hands on, which we had plenty of laying in dusty CD booklets. Prince showed me so many parts of music that would shape the way I appreciated and digested music. On days when the power went out, my father and I would sing “The Beautiful Ones” together. From the stomping beat of “Housequake,” I learned to love the primal, intangible gut-feeling that a good drum could give me. From “Controversy,” I learned to love myself and not worry about what other people say to each other. Prince’s use of dynamics in the song “Kiss” showed me how powerful a simple range could be to a piece of art, and the underwater sound of the guitars on “Purple Rain” opened my mind to the possibility of sound. Beyond these few artificial examples, Prince showed me the power of excellence and achievement for achievement’s sake. In the modern cultural sphere, there’s not one musician who crafted art as carefully as he did simply to ensure the quality of the product. At the young age of 57, it’s easy to react and question what we could have been blessed with had he lived longer, but in this singular example I can say that the strength of his catalogue is strong enough for an entire lifetime.

Angelica Bartorelli

I know this is going to sound crazy coming from a 90s alternative disc jockey. I was very fortunate to be raised by parents that had amazing music tastes, one of which being their love for Prince. I remember watching “Purple Rain” one time when I was twelve because my sister recorded it off VH1 (when it was still good). I know it may seem like I am getting nowhere with this, but my roots in music have always been such an important part of who I am. I performed for six years as a singer and during that time, Prince was one of the biggest musical influences in my life- to the point where I own multiple vinyls, cds and my mom’s original Purple Rain cassette. His ability to entertain people of all ages through his dancing and epic instrumentals set him apart from the rest. He wasn’t afraid to venture into all different forms of music. Every performance he did emulated who he was…. Prince lived and breathed music. His death truly saddens me, but I always knew it would.

Rest in peace to an amazing performer and music hero.

Xander Deccio

I never thought I would wake up today and hear that one of if not my favorite musician has died. I grew up with Prince’s music, hell Purple Rain was the only album I would listen to as a kid. It’s still an album I play when I needed to feel happy. Hell I got made fun of in school for liking Prince and his music. I can’t tell you how many times I spun “Let’s Go Crazy” as a kid, or constantly asking my dad to play Purple Rain in his car when I was six. He was the one artist that I just wanted to see live just to experience it. From his work with The Revolution, to the NPG band, Prince wasn’t just a great musician. . . The man was an artistic genius and I put him on that pedestal next to David Bowie. 2016 has been a really crappy year for music. First David Bowie, now Prince?” RIP man, I hope you and Jimi are having that awesome guitar duel that I always imagined happening in my head.

Featured image credit: Google, labeled for reuse

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