Prince has died suddenly aged 57. He played a show in Atlanta last week, similar to the one he did in Auckland just two months ago, just him, a mic and a piano, and was hospitalised after that show with the flu, but returned home.
"A representative told the celebrity news outlet that the singer had performed in Atlanta even though he was not feeling well and felt worse after boarding the plane for a flight back to Minnesota." (source: RNZ)
I was lucky enough to see him at one of his two his Auckland shows - his first visit to our shores. There was a lot of discussion amongst my music mates about the ticket prices, some folk saying they were too expensive. I just closed my eyes and whacked it on my credit card and figured I'd pay it off - this was a once in a lifetime chance. Who knows when Prince might come back? Now we know the answer, sadly.
I arrived late to Prince - sure,I knew about him, clocked Purple rain, but I didn't connect with his music til I heard 'Kiss' blasting out on a crowded dancefloor (think it was The Brat in Nelson st?) - goddamn, that ish was funky. Then I heard Sign O The Times in the same setting , and Housequake - man, that tune could rock a club. Phenomenal tunes, phenomenal musician and songwriter. Total genius.
Prince was always super quick at getting live clips taken down off the internet, but I still remember seeing a clip of Prince at Madison Square Gardens a few years back, and he had Sharon Jones and the Dapkings open, and Ms Jones and the Dapkings horns joined Prince for one of the encores, doing A Love Bizarre. Damn killed it.
Here's Prince playing and being interviewed by Arsenio Hall, from 2014.