The Black “Album”

Originally a setlist of music for Sheila E’s birthday party, it wasn’t meant to become an album. After coming off SOTT, Prince started writing music that’s more fun and less serious like SOTT was. Dance music for the party combined with criticism he’s been getting about him as an artist (Bob George) and winning back the black audience, who believed he “sold out” for the white rock community.

The first 2 songs were fun dance tracks that I was finding a rhythm to follow within each sound very easily. Then the 3rd song song is his reaction to the “hip-hop culture”. It got me thinking about how Prince and I detest that kind of music, which is part of why I lean so much on him these days. That’s what it feels like at times, especially comparing today’s music to the likes of Musicology. He was very frustrated at this time because this wasn’t by true musicians. Some attempts like “Dead on it” and the tracks ranging from Graffiti Bridge to O(+> show him trying to embrace it. He comes to peace with himself and decides the best thing for him is to continue doing his own thing and not worry about what’s popular. In his own mind, I think he believes that “the right people will still follow him” if he continues being himself. This could also be one of those things that led him to “that night” or the “pulling” of the album. These days, I have few other choices in the ways of music because there’s really not much left for me. Thankfully, Prince keeps things interesting.

“When 2 r in love” has so much beautiful imagery. Although it doesn’t go with anything else on this album, it was something he really believed in at the time. That’s why I think he put it here. And I’m very glad he did. One of those beautiful pieces, like he’s never done. I maen, every album he’s done has to have a good ballad on it, right?

I see a lot of anger in “Bob George” and could feel a lot of it early on. When he got to the phone call, I started laughing. Very experimental… experimentally exhilarating. Brilliant beyond recognition.

The next track goes back to the beginning with “dance music” and also about a popular thing at the time, apty named “Squirrelmeat” (lol). What my folks said about Prince having done drugs came back to me. It’s my belief that he didn’t take drugs, especially not to the point that almost “caused him harm.” The lyrics here suggest he has. None of the album really said to me that he was high while writing it. Whether or not the “pulling” was the result of a “bad trip” on “Squirrelmeat,” I can’t say for sure. Tracks like “Dead on it” and “Bob George” suggest he pulled it becasue he was angry at the time and didn’t want that publicly documented in his musical reporteire. There could be infinite reasons, but its something only Prince himself knows the truth about and I’ll let him keep that secret if that is his wish. It really doesn’t concern me whether or not he has done drugs at this point. I don’t believe he was an addict EVER, but again, I’ll let him have his secrets. I have my beliefs and I won’t pry to see if I’m right or my parents are. It’s his business. Aftera ll, he got where he is all right and that’s what counts. The song itself was fun in every way possbile, especially 2 dance 2. Ironically, Thursday night was mentioned in the lyrics and that night was Thursday night, haha.

Track 7  did little for my mind, but I wasn’t bored. Aftera  while, I got into the rhythm and the end came before I knew it. The last song, quite possibly, marks Camille’s last appearance. Most guitar heavy track since “Bob George” but a lot more so. Had me longing for “If eye was ur g/f”.. just so beautiful. His outburst at the end had me confused, so I really don’t know what he was thinking… randomness?

A party setlist + demos to begin with… still make an incredibly interesting album. I’m gald I made this choice. Maybe I’ll return 2 SOTT tonight and see what happens. It’s been quite a while and I’m starting to feel like its what I’m comparing everything else 2.

B4 bed, I played through some random D&P tracks. “Thunder” came first and I wanted to switch over because of what happened the other night. I sung along and go into the rhythm. I just listened to what the music was saying and where it was going and that was all I needed to have a good time. “Insatiable” is sweet… but has me wondering if I should put that on my mix or not… cuz I’m falling more in love with it everytime I listen. I ended the night with “Live 4 Love” once again… I felt re-energized… but I couldn’t put my finger on that feeling. It was beyond incredible… and actually, I didn’t want the song to end because I was enjoying it so much.

Edit: I think I’m starting to see what that person meant when she said I should wait to do SOTT until I’ve heard more of the albums because I’d appreciate them a lot less after hearing it. I’m finding myself craving the best music Prince has ever done… almost as if certain albums are below him even if he wrote them. It’s very strange. I also saw footage from the Lovesexy tour when he did a medley of songs on piano. Beautiful footage, by the way… simply amazing… and you could swear for a moment that he was Mozart… must be the hair. Anyway, I’ll be returning to SOTT tonight and I’m definitely in the mood for it. I can’t wait to get back to the likes of “Starfish & Coffee” and “If eye was ur g/f”

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