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That skinny motherfucker with the high voice
March 10, 2009 7:28 AM   Subscribe

"Prince announces a triple album set available from Target. Unless he’s going to write a hit song and play in each and every store in the chain, this is a bad deal. We’ve got enough Prince music. We want two CDs and a third of a protege? I don’t know about you, but I’ve got a life. And Prince hasn’t put out a good album in this century. ... How many people are going to tell their friends about Prince’s new album? None. No one has hipped me to a new Prince track in fifteen years. The release of his album is a dead end. He’s abused our trust. When you e-mail me an unsolicited track you abuse my trust. When you add me to your mailing list without asking first, you abuse my trust. When you focus on marketing as opposed to music, you’ve got your head up your ass." - Bob Lefsetz (previously)
posted by Joe Beese (109 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

 
He's also against gay marriage rights.
When asked about his perspective on social issues—gay marriage, abortion—Prince tapped his Bible and said, “God came to earth and saw people sticking it wherever and doing it with whatever, and he just cleared it all out. He was, like, ‘Enough.’ ”
posted by grouse at 7:35 AM on March 10, 2009


He's also against gay marriage rights.

FWIW, he denies that.

He did not vote for Proposition 8. In fact, he didn't vote at all. "I didn't vote for Obama either," he explained. "Jehovah's Witnesses haven't voted for their whole inception." The controversy over a recent New Yorker "Talk of the Town" item, which Prince feels implied he supported the gay-marriage ban, has upset him. It's the first thing he wanted to discuss when the Web geeks had gone and we were alone. "I have friends that are gay and we study the Bible together," he said. He added that two sides fighting "only benefit the third person" who instigated the fight. - Los Angeles Times
posted by Joe Beese at 7:39 AM on March 10, 2009


Did You Know... Prince is one of the very few artists who has denied 'Weird Al' Yankovic permission to parody any of his songs.

Now I know!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:41 AM on March 10, 2009 [7 favorites]


Can we maybe go easy on the NSFW titles? They get tracked by firewall logs, proxy servers, net nannies, etc.
posted by Burhanistan at 7:42 AM on March 10, 2009 [5 favorites]


Your favorite band sucks, blah, blah, blah. People should not release an album of music because I don't like it. You see, Prince owes us some sort of "trust" which he has abused.

Why do these idiots have to put this into moral language. Just say "I bet you the new Prince album sucks."
posted by Ironmouth at 7:43 AM on March 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


Can we maybe go easy on the NSFW titles? They get tracked by firewall logs, proxy servers, net nannies, etc.

Christ, What an Asshole, please stop posting. Forever.
posted by Ironmouth at 7:45 AM on March 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


I'm sure Lefsetz believes he has a well-reasoned and nuanced argument but I'm too busy trying to figure out why he changed the default cursor on his website to crosshairs.
posted by turaho at 7:46 AM on March 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


He's also against gay marriage rights.
FWIW, he denies that... He did not vote for Proposition 8.


You can have opinions and express them, even if you never vote. Saying that you didn't vote doesn't mean that your opinion changed or that you never expressed it.
posted by grouse at 7:46 AM on March 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


It's interesting that Prince's first reaction to being accused of being a homophobe was to combine "Some of my friends are gay" and "we study the bible together". As if there would be no activity appropriate for him and a gay friend other than studying the bible.

I bet he doesn't lecture them at all and their bible study is not in any way related to Prince's beliefs regarding what god says about gays.
posted by splice at 7:47 AM on March 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Right, fuck prince.
posted by hexxed at 7:47 AM on March 10, 2009


Christ, What an Asshole, please stop posting. Forever.

His posts don't show up in Microsoft ISA usage graphs or in Cisco firewall log URL dumps. I was referring to the URL.
posted by Burhanistan at 7:48 AM on March 10, 2009


I'm sorry, but why should I care how Prince feels about gay marriage? Do I have to subject all musicians to a questionaire and see if they agree with me on every topic before I am willing to like their music? He's a Jehovah's witness - it's been clear to me for a long time that there are areas of disagreement between us. Doesn't stop me from listening.
posted by mai at 7:50 AM on March 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


Can we maybe go easy on the NSFW titles? They get tracked by firewall logs, proxy servers, net nannies, etc.

I think you mean "MODS... bad word in the 1st link. Sorry (n/t)"
posted by Optimus Chyme at 7:51 AM on March 10, 2009 [7 favorites]


Wow, this is easily gonna be like 50% better than both Use Your Illusion I and Use Your Illusion II!
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 7:53 AM on March 10, 2009


Thanks for that link, grouse. Man, what an asshole.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 7:54 AM on March 10, 2009


He's also against gay marriage rights.
FWIW, he denies that... He did not vote for Proposition 8.

You can have opinions and express them, even if you never vote. Saying that you didn't vote doesn't mean that your opinion changed or that you never expressed it.


You are also allowed to be agaisnt gay marriage rights. People are free to have stupid opinions. That's the price of freedom.
posted by Ironmouth at 7:56 AM on March 10, 2009


The best Prince story ever.
posted by zeugitai_guy at 7:59 AM on March 10, 2009 [9 favorites]


The best Prince story ever

No way. (NSFW)
posted by Joe Beese at 8:03 AM on March 10, 2009


Prince can do whatever he wants, short of molesting kids, and I'll still listen to his stuff. Musical genius barely sums of what he does.

Sign O' the Times was a helluva peak.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:03 AM on March 10, 2009


Marmaduke is a fascist neocon with a penchant for licking little boys but that doesn't stop me from laughing when that lovable mutt/trickster is up to his usual antics.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 8:05 AM on March 10, 2009 [12 favorites]


You are also allowed to be agaisnt gay marriage rights.

I'm also allowed to be against entertainers who oppose gay marriage rights.
posted by grouse at 8:06 AM on March 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


“God came to earth and saw people sticking it wherever and doing it with whatever, and he just cleared it all out. He was, like, ‘Enough.’ ”

At least he has a nuanced view of the subject.
posted by Astro Zombie at 8:08 AM on March 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


Should we ban swear words from the internet because people work for fascist companies obsessed with monitoring their employees!? I say no! Use a proxy if you're worried about getting fired over the salty talk.
posted by delmoi at 8:14 AM on March 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


“..people sticking it wherever and doing it with whatever...”

Doesn't Prince advocate exactly this in the lion's share of his work?
posted by milquetoast at 8:17 AM on March 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


“God came to earth and saw people sticking it wherever and doing it with whatever ....

Oh, that Nikki.
posted by donpardo at 8:20 AM on March 10, 2009 [4 favorites]


Prince is one of the very few artists who has denied 'Weird Al' Yankovic permission to parody any of his song

You Know Who Else Denied Weird Al Parodying Rights?


oh, not him. I meant Eminem. and it lead to my personal favorite Yankovic 'interview'.
posted by mannequito at 8:21 AM on March 10, 2009 [8 favorites]


[It would be awesome if further discussion of the ethics of having dirty words on metafilter, if said further discussion needs to occur, would do that occurring somewhere else.]
posted by cortex at 8:21 AM on March 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


When you focus on marketing as opposed to music, you’ve got your head up your ass.

You know, they say he had his lower rib surgically removed for just this reason.
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 8:22 AM on March 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


Now think about Prince. I want to meet that Prince. Doo dah doo doo.
posted by Bernt Pancreas at 8:24 AM on March 10, 2009 [5 favorites]


Mefites, Prince wants to paint your picture. Please go stand in that clam and hold this pearl.

Uh oh, Prince has put on his wonder mask.
posted by crapmatic at 8:26 AM on March 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


And to add to cortex's comment: I'd just like to remind everyone that Prince's views on Teh Gay have exactly nothing to do with this post.
posted by Joe Beese at 8:28 AM on March 10, 2009


Having a deal with Target is like having a deal with Starbucks, probably better. Target: come for the shiny plastic objects on an endcap, stay for the shiny plastic objects on an endcap!
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 8:28 AM on March 10, 2009


You are also allowed to be agaisnt gay marriage rights. People are free to have stupid opinions. That's the price of freedom.

Of course. Other people are also free to criticize and/or make fun of their stupid opinions. The two go hand in hand.
posted by EarBucket at 8:28 AM on March 10, 2009


Joe Beese,

I like panackes.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 8:29 AM on March 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


Ain't that a bitch?
posted by NedKoppel at 8:32 AM on March 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


I'd just like to remind everyone that Prince's views on Teh Gay have exactly nothing to do with this post.

To the extent that people should know where their money goes, and that this post is about a product that a celebrity intends to sell for profit, that celebrity's negative views of gay people are as relevant a discussion point as any other.

Also: It's bad form to try to control where a discussion goes.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 8:34 AM on March 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


It's bad form to try to control where a discussion goes.

I believe it's one thing to say "Hey, stop disagreeing with the position I've taken in my post" - another to say, "Perhaps you didn't notice, but you're derailing the thread".

But then I'm relatively new here.
posted by Joe Beese at 8:40 AM on March 10, 2009


You abuse my trust when you post shit like this Joe Beese. You can do better!
posted by Sailormom at 8:44 AM on March 10, 2009



I'd just like to remind everyone that Prince's views on Teh Gay have exactly nothing to do with this post.

To the extent that people should know where their money goes, and that this post is about a product that a celebrity intends to sell for profit, that celebrity's negative views of gay people are as relevant a discussion point as any other.


Which is exactly why I will only download MP3s of the album, or pay for the bootleg at the local swap meet. See, piracy does solve everything!
posted by filthy light thief at 8:45 AM on March 10, 2009 [2 favorites]


Wait. Prince is a religious nutjob? Can we be talking about the same Prince? The Prince I'm thinking of once had an ad in Rolling Stone looking for "young female traveling companions" on a tour.
posted by DU at 8:45 AM on March 10, 2009


You may be new, Joe, but you do good work.

I like Prince's music a great deal but I do think he's a pompous asshole. Pity I won't buy his album because of his rights stance; similarly I haven't eaten a pizza from Dominos in decades.
posted by seanmpuckett at 8:46 AM on March 10, 2009


Three-disc Prince set? Ooh, I hope it comes in a circular box that doesn't protect the discs and is prone to rolling off the goddamn shelf.
posted by box at 8:47 AM on March 10, 2009


Wait. Prince is a religious nutjob? Can we be talking about the same Prince?

Didn't you ever hear the "Purple Rain" LP? He says "He's coming" over and over at the end of "Let's Go Crazy", and at the end of "Darling Nikki" there is a blatant backwards recording that says something like "hello. how are you? I'm fine, because I know He's coming. He's coming. Ha ha ha ha ha ha". "He" of course is Jesus, but Prince has probably also conflated that with ejaculation/orgasm also. I'd say that Prince is more nutjob than religious, and try to go easy on your pejoratives because plenty of religious people are far less nutty than you, keyboard cowboy.

Also, Prince's symbol? That's clearly sign that he thinks himself as some kind of artistic reflection of Jesus.
posted by Burhanistan at 8:52 AM on March 10, 2009


We want two CDs and a third of a protege?

Without Prince's help, we might never have heard the music of Apollonia 6, The Family, Vanity 6, Támar, Taja Sevelle, and Tevin Campbell. Let's wait until we've heard the newest artist taken under his wing.

Not to mention the best band ever - the motherfucking TIME!
My Jungle Love - oh we oh we oh!

posted by porn in the woods at 8:52 AM on March 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


To the extent that people should know where their money goes, and that this post is about a product that a celebrity intends to sell for profit, that celebrity's negative views of gay people are as relevant a discussion point as any other.

As much as I respect and enjoy some of his work (probably about a quarter of it, he is a little too eclectic/prolific for me to follow closely) I've never been a big fan but have always had the impression that he is a fairly private person. This isn't someone who seeks out publicity and considering his astounding body of work doesn't really need it.

I view him much more as a musician than as a "celebrity" and as hackneyed as it sounds, shouldn't his work stand on his own merit? Chopin was a pedophile (I totally made this up, but it could be true. Prince has never asked me to consider his views on anything other than his music and I don't consider his brand of religion relevant at all.
posted by cedar at 8:54 AM on March 10, 2009


Don't forget Carmen Electra. On second thought.
posted by box at 8:55 AM on March 10, 2009


I'm sorry, but why should I care how Prince feels about gay marriage? Do I have to subject all musicians to a questionaire and see if they agree with me on every topic before I am willing to like their music?

I didn't see anybody telling anybody to stop liking the music of any bigot, racist, asshole, or other douchebag whose opinions you might disagree with. But if there's somebody who thinks I'm less than worthy of rights or privileges based on who I am and has publicly stated it, especially if they have cultivated a public opinion that might suggest otherwise, I'm going to be sure to point that out as often and as loudly as possible. Everybody has the right to their own opinion, just like I have the right to call them as bigots for having it. *

And it also won't stop me from loving lots and lots of Prince songs. I wish I could say it wouldn't interfere with my enjoyment of them, but when somebody you respect says you're "less than"... well, it's hard to ignore that. And if it happens that I like one of his new songs, you certainly won't be seeing me inside Target buying it.

* I wrote all of this before the idea that this was a thread de-rail came up, which wasn't the point I was trying to argue. I still think it's relevant because my point was, obliquely, related to spending money on Prince, which I won't do.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 8:56 AM on March 10, 2009


And the amazing Wendy Melvoin and Lisa Coleman -- Prince is also responsible for them. (I first encountered them on the Toys soundtrack, bought their CDs recorded under "Wendy+Lisa"; and according to wiki they are now scoring Heroes). He's got almost as much reach behind the scenes as Brian Eno.
posted by seanmpuckett at 8:56 AM on March 10, 2009


Not to mention that homophobia is really unsexy.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 8:58 AM on March 10, 2009


To the extent that people should know where their money goes, and that this post is about a product that a celebrity intends to sell for profit, that celebrity's negative views of gay people are as relevant a discussion point as any other.

it sure is funny how just about every issue in this country eventually boils down to money as being the ultimate arbiter and means of power

great way to fight the system - target those whose positions you disagree with by reinforcing the power of capitalism to affect them
posted by pyramid termite at 9:00 AM on March 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


I lost all interest in this guy in the late 1980s (by the time of the "Batdance" single), but I'm almost willing to forgive his media hijinks and religious shenanigans solely on the strength of "I Wanna Be Your Lover," which is absolutely choice. "Uptown" and "Pop Life" are also magnificient.
posted by porn in the woods at 9:01 AM on March 10, 2009


Prince has never asked me to consider his views on anything other than his music and I don't consider his brand of religion relevant at all.

In fairness to the "Prince Hates Gays, Therefore Sucks" contingent: increasingly, the two are no longer wholly separable. For instance, The Rainbow Children - which I say disproves Lefsetz's assertion that Prince hasn't made a good record in the Aughties - has Jehovah's Witness weirdness all over it.

So his brand of religion is not without relevance. It just doesn't have any with respect to a post about: 1) the latest veteran musician to ink a big-box-store exclusive distribution deal, and 2) him legally harassing what was arguably the most important fan site dedicated to his work out of existence.
posted by Joe Beese at 9:03 AM on March 10, 2009


Prince is a religious nutjob? Can we be talking about the same Prince?

On the album 1999 (from 1982): "I'm going to another life, how 'bout you?"

On the album Lovesexy (from the late '80s): "I know there is a heaven, I know there is a hell."

His lesser-known song "God" also has some subtle hints that he's pretty religious ("He made us all, only He could").

Yes, we're talking about the same Prince.

I don't care what a musician thinks about God or gays. The question is how good the music is, end of story. Prince has made a lot of great music -- who cares what wacky/dumb/wrong things he believes? If you ruled out everyone who's had some wacky/dumb/wrong beliefs, you wouldn't have much music left to listen to.
posted by Jaltcoh at 9:03 AM on March 10, 2009


The Kevin Smith stuff is hilarious. I just watched all 4 parts of the Prince story linked above.
posted by jquinby at 9:07 AM on March 10, 2009


I've heard two stories from people who lived in Minneapolis about Prince that really add to his mystique.
One person was in a hotel and got in an elevator alone. On the next floor up, Prince entered the elevator with a goat on a leash. Prince went up two floor and then left. Nothing was said between the two.
Another time, someone was on a somewhat empty public transportation bus. At one of the stops, Prince entered the bus with two beautiful women. Prince walked up to the guy and asked him, "What's my name?" Recognizing the star, he said, "You're Prince." Prince responded, "That's what I thought" and then left the bus with the two women before the bus left the stop. Needless to say, in both instances the person was flabbergasted as to what had just happened.
I don't remember the dates that these things happened and even if they aren't entirely true, I'd like to think they are so don't ruin them for me.
posted by SouthCNorthNY at 9:08 AM on March 10, 2009 [7 favorites]


In the early 80's, before Purple Rain, I was working backstage at the Warner Theater.
A short man in a green trench coat walked through the back alley entrance to backstage.
It was just after lunch, Maurice Day and the Time were rehearsing on stage. The man in the trench coat headed for the stage door. I stopped him. I asked him who he was and he said,
"Prince."
I replied , "I'm sorry. The box-office is not back here.'
He said, " But I'm Prince."
I said, " Look, I don't want any trouble. No one is supposed to be back here." He tried to pass me but I blocked him. The stage door opened and a guy in a spotted leopard jacket peeped out. Maurice Day said," Hey man, he's cool." I let the Prince on stage. Ten minutes later
the house manager tells me to follow her to the front of the building. There in big black bold marque lettering was: Tonight Prince featuring Maurice Day and the Time. Ever since then I was known as the Man who wouldn't let Prince in. True story.
posted by doctorschlock at 9:14 AM on March 10, 2009 [16 favorites]


I was somewhat involved in the church/sect as a teenager, and I wonder how Prince reconciles his religious belief system with his current and past career as a public figure whose stock in trade is, and always has been, no matter what gloss he wants to put on it, raunch -- and, also, how the church/sect, which is on the puritanical side, reconciles that contradiction. Prince has been raunchy since "Soft and Wet" came out, and though he may make various coy disgenuous statements about how he's now all about post-matrimonial love, "Black Sweat" is just an upscale, Starbucks version of the same song, thirty-odd years later.

Maybe the answer, judging from his own clumsy and ridiculous attempts to have it both ways on the whole issue of whether he agrees with Prop 8 or not (the LA Times interviewer, Ann Powers, brought up the subject of Prop 8, but he could've easily demurred instead of stepping in it, and she was so starstruck by him that she would've probably let it slide), is that he hasn't reconciled the contradictions, and maybe the contradictions don't matter all that much to the church/sect, since (to be honest) his high profile amounts to free publicity for them.
posted by blucevalo at 9:18 AM on March 10, 2009


i just don't know what to do anymore: prince should not be worshiping deities. prince IS a deity. during the revolution days, he is simply untouchable. 'automatic' has caused me to fuck when i didn't even realize i was in the mood. but this whole god shit has ruined him. he was so much better when he professed his own wishy-washy brand of new-agey Dionysian hedonism (with a side of jesus). i want desperately to hear the new shit, but the target thing is too damn much. i can't do it. these 'exclusive' deals are bullshit. however, prince hasn't abused my trust, because why in fuck's name would anybody trust a pop icon? even if said icon is a genius. that's just asking to be screwed eventually. so, prince and target aren't getting my money. i'll just go home and put on the old shit and get fucking down and probably end up naked and spent.


apologies for a rambling comment, i'm just . . . fuck.
posted by barrett caulk at 9:25 AM on March 10, 2009 [6 favorites]


I don't think that asking questions about a public figure's publicly-stated ideas is off limits, and I don't buy the argument that musicians/artists who make public statements about politics should be free from censure merely because they are musicians/artists.

I also don't think that talking about Prince's public statements about Prop 8 is a thread derail, any more than talking about what he may have said publicly about shutting down fan sites ("My music is mine, I own it," to paraphrase his remarks -- also to Ann Powers, I believe) would be a derail.
posted by blucevalo at 9:33 AM on March 10, 2009


You know, "I can't listen to Prince because of his policy statement on X (or lack of same)" and "I would listen to Prince even if he killed and ate babies" aren't the only two possible positions. You listen to people who you are comfortable listening to. It's a whole package.

It's like a painting. If it looks good on the front and bad on the back, you hang it on the wall and nobody ever sees the back. If it looks good from a variety of angles but not from the front, you hang it on a staircase so you never see it straight on. If it only looks good from a single angle, maybe you should consider buying a different painting. If a certain artist is only good if you forget everything else you know about them, you might consider the same.
posted by DU at 9:34 AM on March 10, 2009


Prince can do whatever he wants, short of molesting kids, and I'll still listen to his stuff. Musical genius barely sums of what he does.

But even geniuses require editors. Prince became difficult to be a fan of around the time that he gained total autonomy and began releasing triple albums that would have made a really good single LP.
posted by Bookhouse at 9:42 AM on March 10, 2009 [3 favorites]


1. Voting with your wallet is a good response to musicians whose politics disagree with your own.
2. Prince is a spectacular musician.
3. This is a bad FPP.
posted by DWRoelands at 9:43 AM on March 10, 2009


Pull up a chair, children, and let me tell you about a decade known as the Eighties. Every Prince album that came out was a gem. But that was a long time ago, of course. I'd be surprised if there were two killer songs on his new three-CD set, despite the fact that he has lost none of his musical chops. Just his songwriting chops.

By the way, I don't care about his religion or his views on gays...although I remain just a little disturbed that Beck is a Scientologist. Doesn't keep me from buying every single one of his CD's, just like I bought every one of Prince's LP's in the Eighties.
posted by kozad at 9:45 AM on March 10, 2009


You know, Beck is a Scientologist, so whenever I hear "bottles and cans, just clap your hands," what I actually hear is "I am going to make you as happy as a baby Psychlo on a straight diet of kerbango."
posted by Skot at 9:46 AM on March 10, 2009 [6 favorites]


Well, kozad, that was sure a World Brain moment.
posted by Skot at 9:47 AM on March 10, 2009


First of all, Prince is a musical genius of the first order. His music has meant more to me and provided me with more happiness than all the blog posts in history.

Second, Mr. Leftsetz says Prince has "abused my trust". Really? Did Prince steal your girlfriend or get you to buy into his Ponzi scheme? No. What did he do? He put out an album and wanted you to listen to it. An unsolicited mp3 may be an annoyance, but it is not an abuse of trust. In fact, Prince is just doing his job. He's making music—apparently lots of it, since he's releasing a triple album.

What is it, exactly, that we trust Prince to do? Make good music. Now, is the album any good? I don't know, I haven't heard it. Do I think it's going to be good? Based on the past few records, I would say that it probably has its moments, but is generally not as good as the music he used to make. This happens. People get old. But there is no evidence that Prince is "abusing our trust" by not making the best music he possibly can right now. In fact, if you seek out the bootleg of Prince's Coachella set from last year, it sure sounds like was trying really hard to deliver the best performance possible. If he's doing the best he can, and yet the music is not as good as he used to be, that's a shame, but it's not an abuse of trust.

What about his marketing scheme? Is it a good idea? Probably not. Will it bring back the glory days of the record industry? No. Is it an abuse of trust? Not unless Prince's people are kidnapping you and dragging you to Target to buy his record. Is charging too much for your record an abuse of trust or a bad marketing decision?

Third, does Prince hate gay people? I'm guessing the guy who wrote "If I Was Your Girlfriend" does not hate gay people. Remember, Prince is not only a genius, but he is also insane, and always has been. Eventually his insanity, probably exacerbated by the death of his child, led him back to the fundamentalist religion of his father. The Jehova's Witnesses don't like teh gay. Prince claims he was misquoted, but I'm willing to believe that, when asked about gay marraige, he spouted off something he heard his preacher say, and then when he saw it in print thought better of it. But this is a man whose music has always been about love—not just fucking—but Love with a capital "L". He may be in the thrall of religious mania, but the man's just not a hater.
posted by vibrotronica at 9:48 AM on March 10, 2009 [4 favorites]


great way to fight the system - target those whose positions you disagree with by reinforcing the power of capitalism to affect them

If you can't get someone to respect other people, maybe the almighty dollar will get their attention. Rich, entitled people in positions of power, especially, get nervous when the cash stops rolling in.

I'm all for making powerful people nervous about their pocketbooks. I think that boycotting, striking and other nonviolent economic resistance has been a catalyst for incredible social change, and I don't think the current situation with equal protection for GLBT is much different, really.

Hit those empowered bigots where it hurts.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 9:55 AM on March 10, 2009


I'm fairly sure I've said all this before, but working on the assumption that the first line of Prince's original contract with Warner Brothers would have said "Prince Rogers Nelson, hereafter referred to as The Artist" explains all his strange behaviour of the early 90s, and suggests that he was not, as generally thought, mad, but rather going all out to irritate the management and legal department of Warner Brothers in an unusual but very clever way (they owned his name, for example, but he demanded to be designated by the symbol, which he owned the copyright on. After leaving WB, he was able to return to his own name).

Very clever, then, though possibly in a quite mad way.
posted by Grangousier at 9:56 AM on March 10, 2009


wait, what?
posted by Xoebe at 9:58 AM on March 10, 2009


As if there would be no activity appropriate for him and a gay friend other than studying the bible.

Even gay people can benefit from knowledge of the biblical variety.

Also: Shit, Piss, Fuck, Cunt, Cocksucker, Motherfucker, Tits. Now get back to work.
posted by rokusan at 10:11 AM on March 10, 2009


Even gay people can benefit from knowledge of the biblical variety.

This is true. One, you can correct your detractors in their own language; two, the heavier ones are great for bludgeoning bigots.
posted by Sys Rq at 10:32 AM on March 10, 2009


Also: Dude wrote a song about fucking his sister. Just sayin'.
posted by Sys Rq at 10:35 AM on March 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


If you can't get someone to respect other people, maybe the almighty dollar will get their attention.

if that's what it takes to get someone to respect you, they don't really respect you at all

Rich, entitled people in positions of power, especially, get nervous when the cash stops rolling in.

let's see, the housing market's crashed, the stock market's going up and down like a yo yo, our banking system may be broke, the distribution system for music has been outdated by filesharing on the internet, but what people like prince are REALLY worried about is whether one angry guy on a web board is going to spend money on his next album

I'm all for making powerful people nervous about their pocketbooks. I think that boycotting, striking and other nonviolent economic resistance has been a catalyst for incredible social change, and I don't think the current situation with equal protection for GLBT is much different, really.

except that you're targeting a guy who doesn't even bother to vote, isn't known for participating in political debates and frankly, isn't going to miss your piddly contribution to his wallet, assuming you were going to buy his next album anyway

get over yourself - what prince thinks about your issue isn't of any cultural or political importance and you're just grandstanding because he's never going to notice
posted by pyramid termite at 10:42 AM on March 10, 2009


only marginally on topic, but i cannot help myself. from 'international lover:'

(monologue)

Good evening. This is your pilot Prince speaking
U r flying aboard the Seduction 747
And this plane is fully equipped with anything your body desires

If 4 any reason there is a loss in cabin pressure
I will automatically drop down 2 apply more
2 activate the flow of excitement
Extinguish all clothing materials and pull my body close 2 yours
Place my lips over your mouth, and kiss, kiss, normally
In the event there is overexcitement
Your seat cushion may be used as a flotation device

We ask that U please observe the "No Letting Go" sign
I anticipate a few turbulence along the way

We r now making our final approach 2 Satisfaction
Please bring your lips, your arms, your hips
Into the upright and locked position
4 landing -- Can U feel it? Can U feel it?
Yeah

brilliant.
posted by barrett caulk at 10:49 AM on March 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


The symbol is exactly the same as the alchemist's symbol for soapstone. It's got to be public domain.
posted by AppleSeed at 10:53 AM on March 10, 2009


Remember Prince also gave his album away free as a covermount CD on the UK Mail, weeks before its official launch.
"It is an insult to all those record stores who have supported Prince throughout his career. It is yet another example of the damaging covermount culture which is destroying any perception of value around recorded music," Paul Quirk, co-chairman of the Entertainment Retailers Association, told a music conference in London on Thursday.
Maybe he does have a thing against record stores. But his "breech of trust" was when he demanded that the three biggest Prince fan sites provide "substantive details of the means by which you propose to compensate our clients [Paisley Park Entertainment Group, NPG Records and AEG] for damages", so maybe he's a bit manic about his views on people in general.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:55 AM on March 10, 2009


Appleseed, apparently it's a mix of things.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:00 AM on March 10, 2009


Dude wrote a song about fucking his sister.

Genesis 20:11-12.
posted by rokusan at 11:00 AM on March 10, 2009


what people like prince are REALLY worried about is whether one angry guy on a web board is going to spend money on his next album

With two personal attacks in your comment, I really don't know what kind of response you want. Sorry I can't help you. Good luck with your rant.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:08 AM on March 10, 2009


I love Prince + Target.
like I
I hate U2 + K-Mart
posted by celerystick at 11:08 AM on March 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


It's like a painting.

Yeah, but in the sense that a good painter knows when to put down the brush. Prince had a nice groove going, but then he started to overdo everything. And he doesn't outgrow anything. He still writes like replacing 'to' with '2' is clever, like a slow 14-year-old girl or Rosie O'Donnell. He is single-handedly keeping paisley from ever coming back into fashion. His wardrobe evolution is a one-way ticket to becoming French Bea Arthur. Jehovah's Witnesses are the most self-absorbed, tragic drama queens of all religion.

Basically, I think that somebody needs to put Prince into an empty room with a guitar and a four-track recorder, dressed in a white t-shirt and unadorned straight-leg jeans, with no mirrors, three meals a day delivered through a hole in the door, and tell him to make some fucking music.
posted by troybob at 11:49 AM on March 10, 2009 [12 favorites]


Does this mean the Bat Dance isn't cool anymore?
posted by Elmore at 11:59 AM on March 10, 2009


Yes, but only ironically.
posted by Dr-Baa at 12:09 PM on March 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


(Yes it is cool, that is. Only Ironically.)
posted by Dr-Baa at 12:10 PM on March 10, 2009


I love Prince + Target. like I I hate U2 + K-Mart

Nothing Compares 2 Wal-Mart.
posted by rokusan at 12:25 PM on March 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


"Does this mean the Bat Dance isn't cool anymore?"

I used to call that album Batsexy.
posted by NedKoppel at 1:46 PM on March 10, 2009


I too once released three of my creations in a Target. People nearby looked at me, wrinkled their noses, and then when it really hit them, they gagged and moved away.
posted by turgid dahlia at 1:53 PM on March 10, 2009


AC/DC, Springsteen, Axl Rose, and now Prince...you know you're not that hard of a rocker if you have an exclusive agreement with Target, Best Buy, Walmart, or some other shitty place.

God knows they need the money. Fuck them all.
posted by hal_c_on at 3:09 PM on March 10, 2009


Shopping at Target isn't all that bad. It's shiny and red everywhere, and I think those giant red spheres in front of the entrance are some sort of pulse emitters.
posted by Burhanistan at 3:12 PM on March 10, 2009


I thought those giant red spheres were there to keep people from driving their cars into the building.
posted by box at 4:45 PM on March 10, 2009


You say I should judge Prince on his music and not on his personal beliefs. I say that anyone who has shown me that much of their ass has forfeited any rights to my not forming an opinion on them.
posted by Faint of Butt at 5:05 PM on March 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


My town of 100,000 people, for some weird reason, has two Targets. Shopping in Ventura - you can't miss!
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 5:18 PM on March 10, 2009


Diet Pepsi ♬ Purple Rain, Purple Rain... ♪ ♫ also try new caffiene-free Diet Pepsi Purple Rain! ♩♬
posted by not_on_display at 5:41 PM on March 10, 2009


Prince gave us some great music, helped other musicians (even ones he wasn't banging, unless Morris Day swings both ways), created a fantastic and fun film, created some racial bridges in a minor way (for many of my peers, his work was the only work by a black artist that they would buy), pissed off Tipper Gore and her band of bluestockings, and was a generally neat guy. Even covers of his work are usually good, because the music he made was, at a fundamental level, solid work.

However, I've been done with Prince for a while. I'm going to put down a date on the death certificate somewhere just after the release of "Kiss," maybe 1986, and pretend the rest was some kind of musical Weekend at Bernie's. Yeah, I could always sense the religious themes, and he never hid the fact that he was a high-strung guy with enough ego to match his issues. Like any artist, musician, or performer I like, I have gone out of my way to ignore his personal views on things, but damned if he has gone off the deep end and surrounded himself with the talentless, and we've known it since the New Power Generation.

Prince has abused our trust, alright, but he has done so by putting out bad music for twenty years now.
posted by adipocere at 5:47 PM on March 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


I don't know. Really? Nothing good after "Kiss"?

Sign o the Times is arguably his best album, and Lovesexy is genius, too, although fairly insane Bootsy Collins-like genius.
posted by blucevalo at 6:12 PM on March 10, 2009


Aww, hell yeah. Sign o the Times kicks all kinds of ass. I think Prince scared himself with that one, and hasn't matched it yet.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:29 PM on March 10, 2009


Yep. Sign of the Times and Kiss (one of the top ten songs of all time) and then...damn, Prince, why can't you just write eleven kick-ass songs a year and relax? No one likes filler. We know you can play guitar....but, well, there may be enough Deadheads around to buy their noodling, but those of us who grew up with the Eighties Prince are not quite so fanatic.
posted by kozad at 6:47 PM on March 10, 2009


little red tar-get
posted by barrett caulk at 7:13 PM on March 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


The whole Target thing is unfortunate, but I think that is part of the future of how music makes money in the 21st century. Not that people have to choose it, but if he's going to continue living the lifestyle to which he's accustomed, probably has to raise some cash every now and then. There's a point where, whatever, make some money, just keep making good music is all I care about. I like it when an artist refuses all that and makes only the good stuff, but I don't really demand that anymore. If it's good music it's still good music.

I was impressed when I saw Prince play recently at the Super Bowl and SNL to promote his new album. Still had some tight chops and lots of energy, and the song was pretty good. But it sounded a bit ... well, I don't know how to describe it, sort of like he was struggling to remain relevant. I like to see artists take chances throughout their lives. He's making new music, and it's not bad, going back to a more raw style, but he's not breaking any new ground anymore. I was never a big fan, though always respected him since the early days, just because he was so completely out there and himself at the same time, and a pretty damn good musician. Probably not an entirely fair criticism, but it would be cool to hear something out of him that just blew everyone away and turned their heads around at the same time, like he used to do, but he's sort of going over the same old ground. Well, better than most, but still ...

As far as the other, well, he can believe what he wants, but I sure didn't see it. Although my experiences with Jehovah's Witnesses always left me with the impression that to a lot of the followers it's mostly an act so as to become part of this tight knit community, not so much a driving spiritual belief, and a lot of these people are barely keeping their "demons" in line. But I know some very devout believers, too, and anecdotes aren't all that useful.
posted by krinklyfig at 7:31 PM on March 10, 2009


So I never saw the point of Prince. I mean, he's a perfectly competent musician - but the material's dull!

I'd be much happier hearing Prince than a lot of music on the radio today (since a lot of that has zero musicians involved) - but it's terribly, terribly bland to my ears - what we used to call "Album-Oriented Rock" back in the day.

I'm honestly curious - what do people see in him?
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 8:14 PM on March 10, 2009


Album-Oriented Rock? Are you sure you're not thinking of Queen?
posted by box at 8:22 PM on March 10, 2009


Perhaps "album-oriented rock" isn't the right term. "Adult contemporary"?
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 8:26 PM on March 10, 2009


I mean, he's a perfectly competent musician

I wouldn't mind a hundredth of that competence.
posted by Wolof at 8:41 PM on March 10, 2009 [1 favorite]


"Hipped me"? Who talks like that?
posted by w0mbat at 9:33 PM on March 10, 2009


Who talks like that?

*waves*
posted by Wolof at 11:35 PM on March 10, 2009


*waves*

*waves back*

And, listen, w0mbat, if you never heard anyone say "hipped me", then it's maybe safe to say... you don't know any musicians? Or, if you do, none of them are over, say 20 years old?

then again... I'm, like, really old, so whaddoo I know?
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:07 AM on March 11, 2009


I'm honestly curious - what do people see in him?

in the eighties/ All the showmanship and raw funk power of James Brown, but with the musical talent to back it up. I love James Brown, but he was just a front man for a lot of talented musicians in comparison to Prince, who has the talent of a lot of musicians all rolled into one person. Funk re-imagined and re-formed in the electronic age. /in the eighties

Now, well I don't get much from his new stuff.
posted by asok at 7:19 AM on March 11, 2009


MCMikeNamara: It's a bit late to post a reply, but here it is anyway. I feel where you are coming from. I am queer too. I have experienced basically no homophobia directed at me personally, so maybe that gives me a different perspective than other queer folks.

If I take the perspective that I am in essence voting with my money every time I buy something (and to be honest I haven't purchased music in years), that puts me in the position of buying basically nothing, because in capitalism most products come with the baggage of some kind of bigotry or oppression. I also happen to believe that consumer activism is one of the least fruitful tactics and works only in limited circumstances.

I can motivate myself to get riled up about a few such products but my energy for outrage is limited. I choose to use it closer to home, working with my students and trying to build a decent community among those around me. In the grand scheme of things that piss me off, Prince's opinions about who I should be allowed to marry are pretty low on the list, given that he has very little real power or inclination to do anything about it. But YMMV.
posted by mai at 11:11 AM on March 11, 2009 [1 favorite]


Prince @ Target: Gonna party like it's $19.99
posted by mosk at 1:13 PM on March 11, 2009 [3 favorites]


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