Friday, July 08, 2005


Prince- The Hits/ The B Sides

You grow up listening to something, whether it’s the stuff that your parents listen to on car trips or the tunes that crank through the boombox of the kid next door. Something. Some foundation which everything else is later built, no matter how incidental or cringeworthy the early stuff turns out to be.

Stuff that you hear and you just KNOW, stuff that exists outside the realm of criticism because of the repetition, the underlying thought that whatever’s being played is part of something larger. Beyond reproach, beyond judgement. Stuff comes on and the snide switch in your head stays down without so much as a thought- no need to think about production values or how high up in the mix the vocals are, any of that shit, because it’s a staple.

You can see where this is going, I’m sure. A lot of the old Motown songs fall into the staple category, the Beach Boys, the Beatles (man, did I ever have a bitch of a time trying to write about them one hundred years/six months ago when this project started). Prince? Fuck. Why not? I mean, the early singles are totally engrained in everyone’s head the second they begin to listen to the radio, he continues to put stuff out and kick ass, and even when he misfires, the fraction adjusts only slightly. Who’s been more influential, more groundbreaking, more consistent? Honestly, what am I going to say about the guy that you don’t already know? And what are you going to say when I play one of my few mulligan cards?


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