The obvious thing to write about today if I was following the herd, would be the death of Prince, the great purple one. Actually, I will follow the masses today, as I did want to touch briefly on the sudden end to his music career.
In terms of music coming out of Minneapolis (Prince’s hometown) in the 1980s, I was a fan of The Replacements and Hüsker Dü. I knew of Prince, but he was too commercial for my tastes at the time. In terms of popularity, he tended to curry favor with the mainstream music crowd that I looked upon with disparagement.
According to Wikipedia, Prince sold more than 100 million records worldwide, making him one of the best-selling artists of all-time. I knew he was popular, but didn’t know his sales were that substantial.
I always enjoy catching Purple Rain, whenever it runs in the loop of B-fare movies that show up across cable television. There’s something about him that obviously resonated with his followers. For me, his appeal was that of observing a prodigious musical talent, but from a distance. Prince’s death is similar for me in many ways to David Bowie’s—if you knew anything about music, you never were not aware of either Prince, or Bowie.
You could call Prince enigmatic and be fine with that characterization. I remember his performance at the 2007 Super Bowl. It was one of the better halftime shows in terms of what is usually pretty tepid in terms of musical excitement.
Unlike with Bowie’s death, none of the local stations seem to have any Prince records in their collection. If they do, they aren’t spinning them.
Late yesterday and first thing this morning, I scanned the dial only to hear the usual warmed over music fare. Apparently WCYY played some Prince yesterday, according to our hard news brethren, like WCSH-6. WBLM was barraging us with Bad Company and Billy Joel, like they have been since 1977. Even WMPG, the community alternative had their usual Friday morning metal.
Streaming radio is probably my best bet today to pick up some Prince signals.