Philadelphia, my name is Prince and everything you’ve heard about me is true. Those were the first words I ever heard the Purple One utter. It was Philly. The Tower Theater. The early 80s. And I had no idea my musical life as I knew it would change.
I admittedly did not know that much about Prince Rogers Nelson when my girlfriend (at the time) and I went to see him. I had a couple of his albums – his self-titled album Prince, Dirty Mind and Controversy. I knew I really liked I want to be Your Lover, but I gravitated more to Sexy Dancer because the keys were just… sexy. Same with Controversy. Loved the title song, but man oh man, did Prince get me with Let’s Work and Ronnie Talk to Russia.
Yeah, I liked Prince a lot. But when he came out onto that stage at the Tower, shirtless, wearing garters and thigh high boots playing his guitar like the reincarnation of Jimi Hendrix, I fell in love with the artist. My girlfriend Audrey was in love for other reasons. Okay, she lost her shit when he gyrated and proceeded to make love to a brass bed on stage.
I remember looking around when he sang Controversy and watching the entire audience on its feet praying to God, led by the five-foot-something dynamo.
Of course, Purple Rain would introduce Prince to pop audiences. And they too, fell in love. But like Michael Jackson with Thriller, a great album in its own right, but never the best quality album. I’ve always felt that way about Purple Rain. Yes it’s genius. It’s great. Darlin’ Nikki, Purple Rain and Let’s Go Crazy are unforgettable. But for me, it’s not Starfish and Coffee, Gett Off or Anotherloverholenyohead.
Attempting to limit your favorite Prince songs to ten is almost an insane and impossible task, but in celebration of his life “Let’s Go Crazy: The GRAMMY Salute To Prince” on CBS, allow me to try.
Prince left us four years ago today. To say I was heartbroken is an understatement. But we do have the gift of all the music he left behind – alone, with the Revolution, the New Power Generation.
I will now work on multiple top ten lists of my fave Prince songs with no crossovers as I’m sure you can, too.
If you missed the Prince tribute, Let’s Go Crazy: The GRAMMY Salute to Prince on Tuesday, on CBS you can still watch here online at CBS.
The special tribute concert will feature an all-star lineup performing hits from Prince including Beck, Gary Clark Jr.,Common, Earth, Wind & Fire,Foo Fighters,H.E.R, Juanes,John Legend,Chris Martin, Miguel, Morris Day And The Time, Sheila E.,St. Vincent,Mavis Staples, the Revolution, andUsher, with special appearances by Fred Armisen, Naomi Campbell, Misty Copeland, FKA Twigs and Jimmy Jam.
What are you favorite Prince songs? Comment below.
Rest in Power, you sexy muthaf*cker.