Prince – Let’s Work 1982 Warner Bros. Records – DWBS 50028 Vinyl, 12″, Single, SRC Pressing
A good portion of the world is celebrating a holiday today: the day that His Purple Majesty passed on into the Afterworld, leaving us on our own, three years ago. Hence, this is technically a sombre holiday post. Continue reading
Prince And The Revolution Anotherloverholenyohead (Extended single) b/w Girls & Boys 1986 Paisley Park 0-20516
It’s well into 2019 along the Pacific Rim and about 3 minutes from the New Year in Chicago, the city where I found myself and then lost myself. Most of my playlist this evening has consisted of mash-ups on this genius YouTube channel (have a look/listen to Shining Woman) and in between that I’ve been playing some records. This is a nice extended jam from one of the funk rockers off of Parade, where everything glides into a kind of Marc Bolan-electro that probably inspired Noel Fielding to get out his spray paint in the middle of the night. I have to be careful, getting tipsy with Prince these days can lead me to melancholic musical impulsiveness and before you know it I’m listening to Nick Drake or Donny Hathaway at 4 a.m. But both these tracks are uplifting and electric purple. Here’s to more positivity in the New Year, and may U all live 2 C the Dawn.
A Anotherloverholenyohead (Extended Version) 7:52
B Girls & Boys (LP Version) 5:30
Published By – Controversy Music
Record Company – Warner Communications
Pressed By – Allied Record Company
Producer, Composed By, Arranged By, Performer – Prince And The Revolution
Original versions on the Prince And The Revolution album PARADE, Music from the motion picture UNDER THE CHERRY MOON. Available on the Paisley Park album (1-25395), cassette (4-25395) and Compact Disc (2-25395)
LINEAGE: Paisley Park 0-201516 vinyl; Pro-Ject RM-5SE with Audio Tecnica AT440-MLa cartridge; Speedbox power supply; Creek Audio OBH-15; Audioquest King Cobra cables; M-Audio Audiophile 192 Soundcard ; Adobe Audition at 32-bit float 192khz; clicks and pops removed with Click Repair on very light settings, manually auditioning the output; further clicks removed with Adobe Audition 3.0; dithered and resampled using iZotope RX Advanced. Converted to FLAC in either Trader’s Little Helper or dBPoweramp. Tags done with Foobar 2000 and Tag and Rename.
Prince & The Revolution – Pop Life b/w Hello 1985 Paisley Park 9 20357-0 A 12-inch Dance Remix by Sheila E.
Last Thursday would have been Prince Rogers Nelson’s 60th birthday. A fact which earned him his own category on the long-running American game show Jeopardy, incidentally quite popular with geezers of all ages. Perhaps we should be consoled that there will never be a starstruck clerk at the Four Seasons hotel forced to wait uncomfortably while Prince digs in his wallet for his AARP card to get that senior-citizen discount on his luxury suite. But nevertheless, we’ve all got a space to fill. Continue reading
Prince – Batdance / 200 Balloons
Vinyl rip in 24bit 192 khz | Artwork at 300 dpi
Original release 1989
This Record Store Day release, April 22, 2017
Warner Brothers 21257-0
Scout’s honor, I swear I was already preparing this long before the news that Adam West, who introduced me and a lot of my generation to Batman and Eartha Kit with its campiest iteration, had passed away. I was going to share it anyway because Prince would have turned 59 years old this last Wednesday, and the 1989 Batman soundtrack has such a mixed legacy that I imagined Robin Williams pranking him with it in the afterworld: “Happy birthday, Prince. I called the house DJ and asked him to play ‘Batdance’ on repeat all day long….” The record was hyped up a lot as a “comeback” by the fickle music biz press, ironic considering that he had been putting out some of his most interesting and creative work with albums like Lovesexy and Sign O’ The Times, but those ambitious records did not take the world commercially by a Purple Rain-style storm. When word got out that Tim Burton – who apparently was listening to those aforementioned albums while working on his Gothic reinvention of the Batman mythos – had asked Prince to put together a soundtrack, the hype machine began heralding that this high profile film was going to put Prince back in the “biggest star on earth” slot. In the end the truth is probably best encapsulated by the phrase, “THROW IT!” from Shaun Of The Dead, when Prince’s Batman is separated from Shaun’s record collection, including several Prince LPs set aside as worth saving during a zombie apocalypse, and chosen instead to be used as a projectile weapon. It’s a kind of distinction. Continue reading
Sheila E. – In The Glamorous Life Vinyl rip in 24-bit/96kHz | FLAC and mp3 | Art scans at 300 dpi
749MB (24/96) + 245MB (16/44) | Direct Links | Genre: pop / funk / soul | 1984
Warner Brothers ~ 1-25107
The Belle Of St. Mark (5:08) Shortberry Strawcake (4:44) Noon Rendezvous (3:50)
Oliver’s House (6:20) Next Time Wipe The Lipstick Off Your Collar (3:50) The Glamorous Life (8:58)
All tracks written by Prince (credited to Sheila E.), except where noted.
The year of 1984 was a watershed one for Prince Rogers Nelson with its record-breaking Purple Rain soundtrack and tour, and the period surrounding it was also a time of prodigious activity for his many proteges and acts where he wrote, recorded, and produced all the basic tracks – Vanity 6, The Time, Apollonia 6, Mazarati, The Family, Jill Jones. One of the most notable – and easily the most talented – of these proteges was Sheila E., who already had many years in the music business as Sheila Escovedo. From the mid-70s, Sheila Escovedo’s talents as a percussionist had graced records from such established artists as Alphonso Johnson, Con Funk Shun, Johnny Hammond, and especially George Duke. She also made a few albums with her father Pete Escovedo, and her uncle was percussionist Coke Escovedo, a pioneer in Latin-rock-jazz crossover through his contributions to the third Santana record (my personal favorite), the Santana/Buddy Miles band, Herbie Hancock, and his own group Azteca. One could argue that Sheila’s Latin jazz chops are underused on these Warner/Paisley Park records, but I still find the standout tracks to be unique and emblematic of how Prince was able to constantly incorporate new sounds and influences. As a musician, though, Sheila probably shines more as a member of the Lovsexy and Sign O’ The Times-era ensembles led by his diminutive purple highness. Last year I spent a lot of time listening to Prince bootlegs after he passed, and there are some soundboard rehearsal tapes from that period where Prince hasn’t even arrived to the studio yet, and the band is just running through material. It’s not like I was a fly on the wall in those rehearsals, but there is some conversational banter that got caught on microphone. I have this intuitive itch that Sheila was probably the person leading everyone through the changes.
Oliver’s House, The Glamorous LIfe, and Shortberry Strawcake are the funk-infused numbers here, but the whole album holds together well. Next Time Wipe The Lipstick Off Your Collar is a unique plea for courtesy in one’s indiscretions, and when played live it often got a preamble from Sheila that fell a bit more squarely on one side of the naughty/nice dichotomy she had going on. The cover for this album is classic too, juxtaposing a flair for high fashion with trashy decadence – you barely even notice the guy passed out on the floor amid squalor, tucked behind the slightly-opened door of what appears to be a dilapidated mansion or luxury apartment building. Is the black cat on the front steps his or hers, or does it belong to the street? Or is it an animal familiar summoned by the sorcery of Sheila’s drumsticks, tucked discreetly into the right leg of her alluring outfit?
For those fond of trying to decipher backward masking on records (which Prince was a bit obsessed with at this time), I’ve isolated some of the unknown lyrics to the instrumental Shortberry Strawcake here:
There is an interesting anecdote about Jesse Johnson (of The Time) having actually written the bulk of The Belle of St. Mark but Prince finishing it up and giving it to Sheila; this resulted in him giving Johnson a writing and performing credit on Shortberry Strawcake as consolation. Perhaps the real truth is recorded in some production notes locked in The Vault. Incidentally, some internet sources take the credits as listed on the album jacket at face value. They are, however, widely known to be false or misleading information to masque the degree to which this album and others were really Prince projects.
The following information is drawn from the Prince Vault @ http://princevault.com/index.php?title=Album:_The_Glamorous_Life
Prince urged Sheila E. to record a solo album starting in February 1984, when she came to visit him at Sunset Sound during initial sessions for the Around The World In A Day album, following a friendship which had begun almost six years earlier.
She wasn’t very comfortable singing lead vocals, although she had sung background vocals for other artists; Prince and Sheila E. began by recording Erotic City, which was used as the b-side of Let’s Go Crazy, before he had her record vocals over some tracks he had originally intended for Apollonia 6 .
Prince suggested she shorten her stage name from Sheila Escovedo to Sheila E., and took the finished tapes to his management company, who introduced Sheila E. to Warner Bros.
The time between vocal recordings to the release of the album was swift; less than two months in total.
All songs on the album were recorded at Sunset Sound, Hollywood, CA, USA. The Glamorous Life and Next Time Wipe The Lipstick Off Your Collar were recorded in late December 1983. The Belle Of St. Mark, Oliver’s House and Shortberry Strawcake were recorded in early January 1984. Noon Rendezvous was recorded in mid-February 1984.
Sheila E.’s vocals and percussion for all tracks were recorded in the first few days of April 1984. The Glamorous Life, Next Time Wipe The Lipstick Off Your Collar, The Belle Of St. Mark, Shortberry Strawcake and Oliver’s House were initially intended for Apollonia 6 until Prince began to work with Sheila E. in February 1984, at which time he set the songs aside for her.
The album produced three singles, The Glamorous Life (which preceded the album), Noon Rendezvous, and The Belle Of St. Mark.
It reached number 28 on the US Billboard 200 Chart, and number 7 on the Billboard Soul LP’s Chart.
Sheila E. – vocals, percussion Prince – all instruments, except where noted (uncredited) Jill Jones – background vocals on The Belle Of St. Mark and Oliver’s House (as J.J.) David Coleman – cello on Oliver’s House and The Glamorous Life Novi Novog – violin on Next Time Wipe The Lipstick Off Your Collar Nick DeCaro – accordion on Next Time Wipe The Lipstick Off Your Collar Larry Williams – saxophone on The Glamorous Life
Prince – producer, arranger (album) (credited to Sheila E. and The Starr Company) Bill Jackson – mixing engineer Peggy McCreary – mixing engineer (as “Peggy Mac”) Terry Christian – mixing engineer
The last entry in the Spring Funk Drive fundraising effort? Well in terms of funds it has been a colossal failure but it was fun to attempt to create some momentum I guess
Prince & The Revolution – Around The World In A Day
Vinyl rip in 24-bit/96kHz | FLAC & mp3 | 300 dpi LP Artwork
904 MB (24/96) + 323 MB (16/44) + 113 MB (320) | Direct Links | Genre: Prince | 1985 Warner Brothers / Paisley Park ~ 9 25286-1 ~ SRC Pressing
I bought this album the same week it was released with money I earned from my paper route as a ten year-old kid. In a previous post, I described this album as a “the gateway drug” to a universe of unheard sounds that would shape my musical tastes in unexpected ways for years to come. It may not have have been Prince’s most consistent record from start to finish, but it was a bold and unpredictable artistic statement from somebody who could have just released Purple Rain II and made everybody happy. The critics loved to hate this album. His fans have always known better. Continue reading