The latest on Prince

The Ickmusic Hero of the Month is Arthur, who hooked me up in a trade with the Feb. 14 and Feb. 15, 2004 Prince aftershows at the Fillmore in San Francisco. The quality is superb, the set lists are amazing, and I’ve been one happy Prince fan the last few days. The parts that really hit me are hearing Prince reach back into his catalog for the old favorites. “The Beautiful Ones”, “Adore”, “Sign o the Times”, “Let’s Work”, “The Question of U”, “D.M.S.R.”, “I Feel For You”, and so many more (even the Time’s “777-9311” – which of course was a Jamie Starr production).

It brought me around again to wondering what is happening today. How 3121 was released back in March, and beyond the publicity blitz around that time with him and his latest protege Tamar, we have yet to see a tour. Meanwhile, his official site closed down due to a trademark issue, and Tamar’s CD has apparently been scrapped. See this 8/31 article in the St. Paul Pioneer Press for a look at the current state of affairs…

Secrets shroud Prince more than purple ever did
by Ross Raihala
Pioneer Press

Last week, Rhino Records quietly slipped the double-CD compilation “Ultimate Prince” into stores, five months after its original street date. Fans of the Purple One might remember back in March, when “Ultimate Prince,” which features one disc with his biggest hits and a second with hard-to-find remixes, was scheduled for release a week before his latest studio album, “3121.”

But at the last minute, Prince coerced Rhino (which is owned by his old nemesis, Warner Bros.) into delaying the compilation, lest it compete with “3121.” And it truly was an eleventh-hour decision, as “Ultimate Prince” appeared in that Sunday’s circulars for the big-box stores, and promotional copies of the set had already shipped to the media. (At the time, those rare promos were selling for up to $180 on eBay.)
read the entire article

So suffice to say I hope everything steadies its course in Prince’s world, and he gets back to what he does best: making and performing his music, and please, more aftershows like these!

Prince:
The Beautiful Ones (mp3) – live, 2-15-2004
D.M.S.R. (mp3) – live, 2-14-2004

I thought I’d post this video since there are a good number of folks who have not seen Prince tear up the stage at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 2004 ceremony (the year Prince was inducted). Prince’s guitar solo during “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”, the all star tribute to George Harrison, was a show stealer to say the least. This performance won praise from Prince fans and non-Prince fans alike. Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne are showcased during the first half of the song. Then, Prince takes over. Watch……

Prince, Tom Petty, Jeff Lynne, Dani Harrison, and Others: “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”

Did you make it this far? Good. Are you anxious to hear the full aftershows? Well, a lucky winner will receive both nights, Feb. 14th and Feb. 15th. It’s as simple as leaving a comment below. One winner will be selected in a couple of days. Good luck….

Update – Related: Silence is a Rhythm Too has a couple of tunes posted from the new ‘Ultimate’ release. Check out the post here.

A WINNER!!! >>> See my comment below for the winner of the aftershows.

How Can a Poor Man Stand Such Times and Live?

This song was written in 1929 by one Blind Alfred Reed. I became familiar with the song through Bruce’s Seeger Sessions tour. I happened across this video tonight (thru a post on Crooks and Liars). It’s Ry Cooder performing the song in a 1987 concert in Santa Cruz, CA. It’s a completely different arrangement from Bruce’s, slowed down considerably, with excellent slide guitar courtesy of Ry. Like I say to myself every darn time I hear something by Ry Cooder, I really need to do myself a favor and buy every last thing the man has done.

On the anniversary of Katrina, I think this fits right in with the theme… Oh, and that’s Flaco Jimenez there on accordion.

Prince does, um, American Idol

Do you really think I’d let this one slide by without a comment? Yeah, the rumors from a few weeks ago proved true after all. Prince showed up on the season finale of American Idol. He came out unannounced to sing “Lolita” and “Satisfied” with his twin backup singers. Unlike the other special guests of the evening, he wasn’t paired up with one of the Idols (thankfully).

Oh yes, my friends, what an absolutely star studded lineup of special guests: Dionne Warwick! Al Jarreau! Toni Braxton! Mary J. Blige! (somebody shut her up please!) David Hasselhoff weeping in the audience!

I had actually walked away after I realized this was a 2 hr episode, and went straight to CNN.com for my yearly ritual of finding out who won before the West Coast announcement. It was there I saw the potentially frightening news that Prince performed (oh no!!) by himself (phewww). So back to the TV I went. So is this a sellout? A savvy marketing move? Probably both. It should move some ‘3121‘ units, and hopefully produce some tour dates (finally).

So what are your thoughts (Prince fans and non-Prince fans alike)? Care to hear what it sounded like? Take a listen…

Prince: Lolita, Satisfied (mp3) – American Idol performance

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Marah Can’t Hardly Wait

My man Zach from Milwaukee has delivered yet again with a great live Marah video (see his previous offering). Recorded live at the Abbey Pub in Chicago, IL on February 17th of this year, here is Marah performing a Replacements song, “Can’t Hardly Wait”. Thanks Zach.

Gotta love the cigarettes and F bombs. Take it away….

Update: Check out this Dutch blog for some more video clips of Marah (04/22/06 Utrecht, The Netherlands)