He may have sold more than one hundred million copies and produced more than fifty albums; his career may have encompassed more than four decades, bringing him Grammy Awards, Golden Globe Awards and Academy Awards and he might have been one of the most influential musicians in history, inducted in every Hall of Fame, but none of it matters.
What matters is that we make love to Prince’s music. We started doing so in the ‘70s and we’ll never stop.
The first time I wanted to know more about Prince was, ironically, after listening to Eminem’s line: “I’ve been dope, suspenseful with a pencil ever since Prince turned himself into a symbol”.
What kind of symbol? Why? Who is actually Prince?
Prince Roger Nelson has been one of the greatest musical geniuses of the contemporary era; far from being just and incredible singer, Prince was a gifted song-writer, producer, director, actor and skilled performer who knew how to play dozens of different instruments.
His prolific career started in 1976, with the first album, “For You” being published in 1978.
“Purple Rain”, published in 1984, defined Prince as one of the leading musicians of the new era, paving the way for what will become and unrivaled icon; the album immediately received critical and public appraise, both for its melodic beauty and its artistic experimentation.
The value of his artistic contribution could never be understated, especially because of the eternal fire that burned inside Prince and always led him into experimenting in and out of music itself; Prince was the first major artist ever to release an entire album online, in 1997, back when the internet was still nobody’s land.
His art freely explored taboo themes never before tackled by mainstream pop, greatly contributing to the subsequent musical wave and its freedom.
His music, as sensual as silk sheets caressing a golden goddess, complemented his unrepeatable appearance: bright purple, glitter, high heels, open shirts; Prince playfully danced along the edge separating genius and madman, and we all danced along.
Irreverent and constantly defining his own world, Prince was a man who defied conventions, refusing the prevailing model; an all-out rebel whose fire burns so strong that not even death can put it out.
Prince never stopped recording, performing, composing and dreaming; his latest album, “HITnRUN Phase Two” was published in December 2015, forty years after his first productions.
In 1993, once more defying the mainstream commercial marketing and advertising trends, Prince refuted his own name, and started defining himself only by the symbol , known as the “Love Symbol”.
Today the latest news would be that Prince is dead at 57 years old.
But, honestly, who can really declare the death of a symbol, never mind the Love Symbol itself?
The only way Prince can ever die, is if nobody were to make love to his music; but that is not going to happen anytime soon, probably ever.
Until we’ll be willing to, he’ll be there, dancing and laughing, as defiant as ever, just to let us bathe and love under the Purple Rain.