My Strange Prince Experience

An odd experience I will never forget.

February 1, 2018
Prince

(Photo by David Brewster/Minneapolis Star Tribune/TNS

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You’ve probably heard by now that multiple sources confirmed Prince’s death.

 When I heard the news, my mind immediately raced to a strange experience that my wife and I had involving Prince in 1998.  I was at a radio convention in Miami, and Prince was set to perform at the convention after being signed to Arista Records.  We had no idea where the show was going to take place until the day of the show, other than somewhere in Miami.

 

Early in the evening all of the radio people were escorted into the ballroom of a hotel we were staying in.  We figured we would see someone speak and then get escorted to a big music venue to see Prince.  Upon entering the room… There it was!  A stage, lights and the “Prince symbol” hanging behind the stage.  I was going to see Prince for the first time ever… IN A HOTEL BALLROOM!

 

Now keep in mind, Prince was not a tall man… And the stage was only a foot or so off the ground.  When he arrived on stage, I couldn’t see him.  I just heard screaming from the people standing at the front of the stage.  This was “Belieber” level screaming, from grown adults.  At that moment, I realized just how cool this experience was.  Fog filled the ballroom, to the point where you couldn’t see ANYTHING but the glow of purple, blue and green lights, and the band started jamming some of the funkiest beats I’ve heard to this day.

 

Most bands filter in their most familiar hits with the lesser-known songs or new material.  Not Prince.  It was all new songs (that nobody in the room knew) for the first 40 minutes, but then he finished the show off with 5 of his most well-known songs.  People in the place erupted/danced/jumped/screamed/cried for 25 minutes, and then he disappeared without a goodbye or an encore.  It was so… Prince.

 

Prince’s artistry will live on through the music you hear every day, but it was the quirkiness of Prince that endeared me to him in such a strong way.  He never did anything the way you would expect, and his mysterious ways set him apart from all other musicians.  R.I.P Prince Rogers Nelson (June 7, 1958 – April 21, 2016)