Purple Rain – Prince & the Revolution
Who is the greatest living artist in pop music history from the 1980’s on through today? It wouldn’t be too hard to make a case for this guy, Prince.
Maybe because he’s so strange (the whole Symbol-as-a-name era still rankles), so diminutive (Dan has seen him and won’t even give him 5’3), or maybe it’s because he hasn’t made a truly great album since the 80’s (arguable, but yeah I get it) many people shrug off Prince as such.
But throw on this record and it’s tough not to at least hear the argument that the Purple One is perhaps the #1 person in terms of creative brilliance in the last thirty-or-so years.
The Man, The Myth, The Legend
The year was 1984. Pop culture was humming. Great movies, great music, great sports teams (my favorite baseball team the Detroit Tigers won the World Series). When I look back on childhood the year 1984 has a special place in my heart. And 1984, for all intents and purposes, was the year of Prince (and the Revolution).
“When Doves Cry” was the top song of the year. “Purple Rain” was a hit song and a top box office drawing movie. Prince was at his creative peak. Coming off the brilliance of 1982’s “1999” the music world was ready to embrace the Minnesota native and his brand of electro-funk-rock. And man did they ever! Prince had songs good enough to be singles in their own right relegated to B-Sides and the world was treated to a man so in tune with his musical gift it seemed unfair.
The Dandy Experience
Meanwhile in Detroit, Dan and Randy were both exposed to Prince to varying degrees. Dan would get into Prince via his sister’s record collection while Randy listened to the radio hits from afar. Still, when he did discover it full-on in 1992 it hit him hard.
Listen as we explore the commercial peak of maybe, just maybe, the greatest living artist of our times (post 1980). And Dan find’s his sing-screaming range.