By now, it’s not news to anyone that the world has lost an amazing musical legend. A pioneer in the business.
Prince truly needs no introduction. I also won’t sit here and pretend to have been a hardcore fan of his, because the truth is that I wasn’t. A fan, absolutely. I love his music and listen to it still all the time. But I know there are those of you out there who were much more a hardcore fan of Prince, so I will attempt to give him his due diligence in the best way I know how.
I am humming “When Doves Cry” right now. I heard a lot of Prince’s music growing up. He was one of those musicians whose voice and music takes me back to the good old days. Each song from the 70s and 80s puts me right back at a time when I was a kid and where I could actually remember where I was when a certain song played on the radio. “Little Red Corvette” was a song I heard very often as I stood at the bus stops in Baltimore City with my mother and older brother, as drivers would zip by, blasting it from their speakers. One of my favorite songs of his is “The Most Beautiful Girl In the World.”
The reason I felt like writing this is because I wanted to express why losing a musical legend like Prince is so devastating, for those of you who may not understand. People have already began to moan about why people are crying and so sad about his death (as if a person dying alone shouldn’t warrant that; not to mention he was only 57), but let me explain why I feel it is, and I’m sure many of you can agree.
In today’s world, it goes without saying that there seems to be so much negativity, fighting, anger, separation, you name it, between so many people. Arguments just seem to happen by the thousands. Few people can agree on anything. So I honestly feel that Prince was able to do what many others have not been able to, and do an AMAZING job of it…
…and that is, he made music. Music that can bring us all together.
Let me write that again. Music that can bring us all together. Doesn’t that sound wonderful? With all the disagreements, debating, fighting and everything else that goes on every day, isn’t it nice that there exists something we can all, or most of us, can agree on? It doesn’t matter the type of music. The point is that it brings us together in whatever way it can. I don’t know too many people who don’t listen to music AT ALL.
The great thing about Prince was that he made the type of music that we ALL could enjoy. Nothing against the other types, because I do like them all. At one time, I didn’t really even care much for country music, but ABC’s Nashville changed that for me. But let’s think about country music, which has a predominantly white audience and hip hop with mostly an African-American fan base. Again, nothing against music that happens to reach a certain demographic, but Prince’s music reached everyone.
Looking on Twitter and Facebook, it is wonderful to see ALL kinds of people paying tribute. I’m talking black, white, Latino, Asian, etc., and I don’t even have to search long and hard for the different varieties of people before I see it. Again, there are so few things out there in our world that can reach such a wide audience and in a positive way as Prince did with his music.
Music is such a beautiful and powerful thing. Even saying that is being mild. Music touches us ALL in different ways. Music is one of those things where two people could be from opposite ends of the world, we hear it, look at each other and the heads start to bob. When standing in a crowd of people, you can just feel the change in the atmosphere when music starts to play.
As with anything else, of course, there are the negative comments out there from those who weren’t a fan of Prince. Nothing will change their minds, I suppose. But a person died here. If nothing else, keep that in mind. He will never be back. There isn’t much point in being negative now.
As for me, I truly understand the power of music. So when a musician passes away, I know that for the most part, it will be devastating to a lot of people. Don’t get me wrong; anyone’s death is important. I’ve never been the kind of person to become “numb” to it. I simply won’t allow myself to. But with the reach a great musician has, it can hit us a lot harder than others.
Another great aspect about musicians, I would assume, is that I can imagine very few of them choose to do music to reach a certain demographic. I can’t figure a musician says, “I’m going to take up music just so I can reach white people” or “I will start playing an instrument so I can get black people to like me.” Absolutely not. Music is one of those arts where the love is often what drives the best musicians and their goals are to reach the masses. Many have over the years and since music will be around forever, many will continue to.
When hear of a musician’s death, even if I am not a fan of him or her, or don’t know who they are, I still feel for the people who will be hurt by losing that person. Since music in general is what brings us together, I don’t have any problem sympathizing with folks who will be touched by that devastating news. I don’t have to be a fan of them to understand, because after all, musicians I have been a fan of have obviously passed on as well. So again…it is something we should be able to realize.
Of course, it wasn’t long before all the assumptions of how he died, but who the hell cares? It’s as if people need to focus on that more than Prince himself. I don’t care about the way it happened. Again, he’s dead. There’s no sense in getting out one last “insult” or declaration about his life. Just shut up about it. Even if you end up being correct, at the time you first said it, you were just guessing. You don’t have inside information to know this or that. So just leave it alone and show some respect.
Anyway, this is one post that I feel I can share with just about anyone, even though it’s possible very few will read it. That’s okay. With my other posts, I know that only certain people may be interested in them. This is one of the few that I’m sure folks can appreciate because again…who doesn’t like music?
It is sad that it takes a death like this to bring people together. I’m one of those crazy folks who spends a lot of time wishing people could be brought together without someone having to die first. It’s like when families can show up for the funeral of a loved one, but can’t visit each other at any time besides that.
Not to say that people didn’t care about Prince before now, but I’m talking about people and our appreciation of music. We’re also nearing election time, so of course, people have magically found time in their busy schedules to argue about that of all things. Yet we can’t take some time and talk about the good things that can bring us together.
As with everything else I’ve written, I don’t expect this to change anyone’s minds, nor do I expect that the blog post of an “unknown” soldier stationed in Texas will be viewed by a lot of people. But that’s not the reason I write. I write because it’s the best way I can express my feelings on a vast array of topics. It is also my way to pay homage to those who have reached us in ways that few can.
Though I am not crying right now, I truly understand why many others are. I said above that I’m not a hardcore fan of Prince and he has reached me in wonderful ways. So I can only imagine how he’s reached those who are much bigger fans than I am. Believe me…I understand, y’all.
Yeah, I can remember listening to “The Most Beautiful Girl In The World” back when I was in middle school before heading off to school one morning, as I’m brushing my teeth fifty times with an entire tube of toothpaste, hoping to impress this girl I had a crush on, while I looked in the mirror and sang the song. I’d hum that first part…dum-dum dum…ding…ding. Could you be…the most beautiful (spit) girl in the world…it’s plain to see…you’re the reason that (gargle) made a girl…oh yes you are…(rinse)…dum-dum dum…ding ding…
Rest in peace, Prince. When that girl turned me down cold, you were there. When I thought I was going to embarrass myself and enter my school’s talent show, you were there also. I’m sure you were there for a ton of other people as well. I know this blog post doesn’t begin to mean much to you or those who were fans of yours, but I thought I would show respect in the best way I know how.
Thanks for the great years and for blessing the world with your amazing and legendary music. You will certainly be missed more than words could ever express.
dum-dum dum…ding ding…