Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Early Prince - Live

Amazed to find this on YouTube, Prince usually removes the least thing of his from the net. Twat.

I think he's rubbish now, and has been since Sign O The Times. But the early stuff is still very good, especially live. Prince really is an amazing live performer: I went to see him in London, August 1986 - his first shows in UK for 10 years or so. It blew me away, he was simply amazing. And tiny, of course.

Here's Controversy from 1981, Houston. He's already pretty much the finished article, though his dancing improved from this point, hehe. I love his ease with his guitar (spot his volume adjustments?) and these early shows have a raw quality totally lost in his later work. Guitar always dominates his live shows, and that's been lost on the records over the years too.

Next up, Dirty Mind from 1983: the dancing is better ;) and he's pretty much the finished article here. The microphone juggling stuff is in now. I think this video, though fairly poor quality gives a pretty good sense of how he can rock a joint. It's amazing to be in a place rocking like that - it's 2 hours of genuine magic.

Computer Blue, 1st Avenue, 1983 (!) Shame about the quality again, but it's good and raw. Interesting that the main solo is clearly still unfinished in this version, few notes missing. Important ones too. Shame the vid misses afew seconds of the solo near the end too.

AUTOMATIC from 83, again. No guitar, but it's still edgey and somehow quite subversive. I don't know how, but it seems it. What a performer..... Nearly 30 years ago. Christ, I'm getting old. Prince is 50 now? Shit........

I only got into Prince because I had bought my first LP but hadn't liked it and I'd taken it back to exchange for Purple Rain. (That's something you can't do now!) Here's a great track from the then new album I;d taken back, because I didn't like it! I can't believe I didn't like it. Still, Purple Rain really got me into Prince so I really can't complain. Win some, lose some.

Actually, I imagine that's when I first ever heard of MLK - I loved that single, Pride. Crikey. 25 years ago? Shit......

It must be 15 years since I went to one of Prince's famed after-gig shows in London somewhere in some tiny little plafce setup for a gig. I was about 10-20 feet away from him, hobknobbing with the stars apparently (I didn't know nor care). It was getting light by the time we left. I felt very lucky.

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