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Forums > Prince: Music and More > would Prince's later career been more respected if he had just stuck with WB?
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Reply #90 posted 07/20/17 11:08am

rogifan

purplerabbithole said:

another extenuating factor. I agree. Too much music means each album isn't treated like an event. It also means he might not have been as good at editing himself.





muleFunk said:


A better question would be would Prince's career been more respected if he only released an album every 4 years.




Or he just wanted to release music whenever he wanted to. An independent contractor can pretty much do whatever they want.
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Reply #91 posted 07/24/17 5:59am

spookyelectric
23

purplerabbithole said:

Well, I think Lovesexy is some of his best work. W and L weren't there to ground him for that album. I don't know what I feel about all the focus being on the Revolution, Susan etc as the sole reason he didn't get mainstream respect. I think its a factor but it is also highly subjective (kined of like saying "I like that music better so therefore everyone else should".) Considering things like rap becoming huge, I am not sure his anything-goes style of funk/rock/r&b/pop he had been laying down (with jazz, new wave, and psychedelic influences) would have continued to be as relevent even with all those talented folks around him. It might have been a bit more consistently critically acclaimed but I am not sure young folks would have listened to it especially if Prince's look/image and other choices didn't jell with the youth culture or the public at large. It was treacherous ground, the early 90's. For example, let's say Prince had kept all those people you mentioned and still went to war against WB, would they have encouraged or discouraged it? Could he had insisted that W and L step aside on some tracks so that P could feature a rapper in his band (in order to be relevent with rap fans etc.). W and L might have argued against it but that doesn't mean he wouldn't have still done whatever he wanted. It also doesn't mean that new jack swing wouldn't have found its way into his sound (with or without Susan, or Wendy or whomever.) So many factors to consider beyond just this small group of talented folks who supported his work at that time. Being inspired and even musically supported by talented people doesn't mean Prince still didn't run the show. He chose those folks, he chose what ultimately they were allowed to contribute, etc. He chose to move on (in most of the cases it was his choice.). No one ever considers that Prince could have kept the same folks on board only to listen to them less and less. That is what pop stars do.

__________________________________________________

spookyelectric23 said:

That's true. He would have moved on from all of that eventually, as he did. I dig 'Lovesexy', too. I always loved that record. I remember not too long after buying that on the day, I bought a cassette bootleg of '"The Black Album"' from some cat on the street in NYC. The tape was sped up a half-step from being dubbed over a zillion times from tape deck to tape deck. What's great is that - after comparing it to the official release - there's more of a light-hearted, sillier charm to the record. It's more fun in a way to listen to. Especially a song like "Bob George". It's less dark and has more humor to it, sped up a half-step.

I appreciate how you broke down the details of what his deal was at the time. Fascinating stuff. Thanks for sharing. Have a good one. Peace.

spookyelectric23 said:

Perhaps.. I still appreciate that he was even able to get one new album out a year. Most labels would not be down for that. Warner Bros. compromised as much as they could considering.

I agree with what someone said about the people he had around him at the time, such as Susan Rogers, the Revolution, Cavallo, Fargnoli and Magnoli... As much of a genius as Prince was (/is, as music = immortality), he had a circle of people around him to ground him as much as was possible, as well as people who inspired him to create some of his all-time best work.

He was still a young guy at the time he disbanded the Reviolution, stopped working with people like Susan Rogers.. I applaud his sense of guts to take risks, but I was sad to see them all gradually go away.. It was a weird time. Not long after, hip-hop and gangsta rap became that next big wave not unlike what the whole 'Purple Rain' phenomenon was to '84 and '85.

Speaking of gangsta rap, it trips me out: the main riff to "Wonderful Ass". For something originally recorded in '83 or '84 it sounds like a riff Dr. Dre would have whipped for NWA or on his own album 'The Chronic'.

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Reply #92 posted 07/24/17 9:20am

SupaFunkyOrgan
grinderSexy

avatar

IMO, his conversion was the biggest imediment to his later career. Sticking with WB might not have been such a bad idea. He was too scattered without a label.

2010: Healing the Wounds of the Past.... http://prince.org/msg/8/325740
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Reply #93 posted 07/25/17 7:11am

CAL3

SupaFunkyOrgangrinderSexy said:

IMO, his conversion was the biggest imediment to his later career. Sticking with WB might not have been such a bad idea. He was too scattered without a label.

.

Oh no doubt, and the only amemendment to make to your state is to point out that by "later career" we're talking about what essentially amounts to "the entire second half" of his career.

.

Familiar situation: great artist, atrocious businessman.

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Reply #94 posted 07/25/17 8:23am

SupaFunkyOrgan
grinderSexy

avatar

CAL3 said:

SupaFunkyOrgangrinderSexy said:

IMO, his conversion was the biggest imediment to his later career. Sticking with WB might not have been such a bad idea. He was too scattered without a label.

.

Oh no doubt, and the only amemendment to make to your state is to point out that by "later career" we're talking about what essentially amounts to "the entire second half" of his career.

.

Familiar situation: great artist, atrocious businessman.

Yes, entire 2nd half. His conversion was not that long after leaving WB.

2010: Healing the Wounds of the Past.... http://prince.org/msg/8/325740
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Reply #95 posted 07/25/17 8:44am

purplerabbitho
le

Excellent points. However I must say I don't think the JW conversion was an impediment on all of his music (obviously it had a bad impact on some songs--specifically in the lyrics department but good stuff was still created. Some religious conversions have led to musicians jumping into the CHristian music genre entirely ) and I don't know if Prince singing Head at 50 would not have been a bit awkward regardless of religion.

The only thing I truely think Prince was overrated about was his ability to conduct business. He made himself obscure by ignoring the need of contracts, promotion and internet accessibility. Business-wise, the only thing Prince did that had a positive impact was insisting on getting his masters but it was at the expense of his later career.

Yes, he made more money directly on the sales of his music in the short run, but I suspect had he not gone that route, even with only getting 10% of each CD's sale, he would have made a lot more money overall and kept a more respectable legacy in the later years--had he just played the game a little more conventionally. I don't know maybe Prince was insecure about his ability to sell large scale. I remember reading some commentator in an article stating that Prince seemed to be torn between being an underground artist and a super-star. Its like he was more comfortable with just getting rich off a niche audience.

CAL3 said:

SupaFunkyOrgangrinderSexy said:

IMO, his conversion was the biggest imediment to his later career. Sticking with WB might not have been such a bad idea. He was too scattered without a label.

.

Oh no doubt, and the only amemendment to make to your state is to point out that by "later career" we're talking about what essentially amounts to "the entire second half" of his career.

.

Familiar situation: great artist, atrocious businessman.

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