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Thread started 12/09/19 3:15pm

iibloxorz

Feelings on the vault tracks

Hi, I'm relatively new to the fanbase and prince.org! I've had exposure to him for most of my life but only recently started diving into his music myself, and not much else has been more fun.

.

However, I've been thinking about it, and I've been questioning whether it's morally right for me to be listening to the vault tracks off of Purple Rain and 1999 Deluxe. It's all very good, some of them are up to par with tracks on their respective albums, but I'm not sure if this is stuff he actually wanted released. His wishes for the contents of the vault were never explicitly confirmed from what I've gathered, with him only stating that "it'll eventually be released by someone." To me sometimes it feels like the vault tracks are songs that aren't finished to his standards and shouldn't be heard by his fans, but a great deal of them have already been bootlegged (which I've gathered that P was also against). I debated buying both the PR and 1999 Deluxe editions, but I don't know if it's morally right for me to purchase something, that he didn't want released or wasn't finished to his standards, with his name on it.

.

There's always this feeling of guilt when I listen to the vault tracks. Am I rational for feeling this way? Does it make me less of a fan? Not sure what to feel here.

Is it ♥ or is it $?
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Reply #1 posted 12/09/19 3:40pm

KoolEaze

avatar

Welcome to prince.org .

In my opinion fans don´t need to feel conflicted about this because Prince clearly said that people would one day take care of the music in the vault and release it. And if he had not wanted this to happen he would´ve made sure to prevent this from happening.

The one silver lining of him not leaving a will is that he hasn´t left any instructions on what to do with his music.

" I´d rather be a stank ass hoe because I´m not stupid. Oh my goodness! I got more drugs! I´m always funny dude...I´m hilarious! Are we gonna smoke?"




http://kooleasehvac.com/
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Reply #2 posted 12/09/19 6:48pm

coldasice

A lot of people on here already had most of this stuff anyway...for years! I was only really surprised by Bold Generation
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Reply #3 posted 12/09/19 7:48pm

ISaidLifeIsJus
tAGame

avatar

KoolEaze said:

Welcome to prince.org .

In my opinion fans don´t need to feel conflicted about this because Prince clearly said that people would one day take care of the music in the vault and release it. And if he had not wanted this to happen he would´ve made sure to prevent this from happening.

The one silver lining of him not leaving a will is that he hasn´t left any instructions on what to do with his music.


nod


P said this more than once about The Vault.

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Reply #4 posted 12/09/19 10:09pm

lavendardrumma
chine

90% of it was distributed by Prince within his inner circle. Some of it was only duped for purposes of auditioning tracks with collaborators and weren't finished, it's true, but Prince was not greta at editing his own work, and no amount of polishing some of these would have helped. Prince also talked about the vault frequently in a way artists typical do not of their unreleased material. He spoke of it as an archive of work hs audiences would hear eventually, that his best songs were being held back for the future, and he even talked about it being something he expected would happen after he died (which is why people are still surprised there were no instructions, or indication of what he wanted released or not). Why feel guilty? You can hear when a song is rough isn't a fully realized Prince song. You're not going to judge him for it, and it's not tarnishing his rep at this point.

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Reply #5 posted 12/10/19 1:08am

TheEnglishGent

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coldasice said:

A lot of people on here already had most of this stuff anyway...for years! I was only really surprised by Bold Generation

Are you saying that Bold Generation was the only track you didn't have, or the only one you hadn't heard, or the only one you were previously unaware of?

You had Money Don't Grow In Trees, Vagina, Rearrange, International Lover take 1, You're All I Want, If It'll Make You Happy, How Come U Don't Call Me Anymore? Take2?

I guess you're an elite collector then and I don't think that's representative of what a regular bootleg collector would have amassed from the widely available boots.

RIP sad
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Reply #6 posted 12/10/19 5:13am

NouveauDance

avatar

TheEnglishGent said:

coldasice said:

A lot of people on here already had most of this stuff anyway...for years! I was only really surprised by Bold Generation

Are you saying that Bold Generation was the only track you didn't have, or the only one you hadn't heard, or the only one you were previously unaware of?

You had Money Don't Grow In Trees, Vagina, Rearrange, International Lover take 1, You're All I Want, If It'll Make You Happy, How Come U Don't Call Me Anymore? Take2?

I guess you're an elite collector then and I don't think that's representative of what a regular bootleg collector would have amassed from the widely available boots.

I think they were just saying BG surprised them, not that it was the only song they hadn't heard before. That's what I took from it any way.

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Reply #7 posted 12/10/19 5:46am

LoveGalore

If Prince did not want this shit to be heard, he would've set it on fire. Not curated it and left instructions as to how to access the directory in the vault and find locations for things. Set your mind at ease - Prince was an artist and though these songs didn't make sense in the scope of the releases they were created around, they make sense when taking a deep dive in retrospect.

.

To put it bluntly: There is no longer a future for Prince and everything now is an examination of what he did along the way.

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Reply #8 posted 12/10/19 8:43am

joelmarable

MONEY DONT GROW ON TREES

What a funky track, sounds right out the oven 2 me. should have been released, loving this no one does chicken scratch funk like prince , one of his funkest that was not released, on repeat 4 sho

stickman
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Reply #9 posted 12/10/19 8:46am

rdhull

avatar

iibloxorz said:

However, I've been thinking about it, and I've been questioning whether it's morally right for me to be listening to the vault tracks off of Purple Rain and 1999 Deluxe. I

geezus

c'mon baby, where's ya guts?
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Reply #10 posted 12/10/19 8:50am

jaawwnn

avatar

Prince didn't want his music on Spotify (unless the price was right), half the time Prince didn't want you listening to anything older than his newest song. Don't tie yourself in knots worrying about it, he changed his mind every 20 seconds.

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Reply #11 posted 12/10/19 9:47am

CAL3

iibloxorz said:

Hi, I'm relatively new to the fanbase and prince.org! I've had exposure to him for most of my life but only recently started diving into his music myself, and not much else has been more fun.

.

However, I've been thinking about it, and I've been questioning whether it's morally right for me to be listening to the vault tracks off of Purple Rain and 1999 Deluxe. It's all very good, some of them are up to par with tracks on their respective albums, but I'm not sure if this is stuff he actually wanted released. His wishes for the contents of the vault were never explicitly confirmed from what I've gathered, with him only stating that "it'll eventually be released by someone." To me sometimes it feels like the vault tracks are songs that aren't finished to his standards and shouldn't be heard by his fans, but a great deal of them have already been bootlegged (which I've gathered that P was also against). I debated buying both the PR and 1999 Deluxe editions, but I don't know if it's morally right for me to purchase something, that he didn't want released or wasn't finished to his standards, with his name on it.

.

There's always this feeling of guilt when I listen to the vault tracks. Am I rational for feeling this way? Does it make me less of a fan? Not sure what to feel here.

.

I feel what you're saying and as a lifelong fan I do feel much the same way you are feeling. IMO, all the "he would've burned it if he didn't want it heard," or "we've all had this stuff for years anyway," etc are rationalizations used to justify what was in essence thievery before he died and grave-robbing after. Dramatic, yes, but true.

.

And yet, Prince left zero plan for handling posthumous releases, and the Estate understandably needs to generate income. I've bought each of the posthumous releases and haven't <i>felt</i> particularly good about it. That's just me, not judging anyone or saying how any other fans should feel. Doesn't make me any more or less ethical than anyone else.

.

I would've been happy to buy a 1999 configuration that included the album, the b-sides disc, and the live material. I haven't yet listened to any of the vault stuff. Not in a hurry to. I suspect I'll listen to those two discs once and probably not much more thereafter, just like the underwhelming PR vault disc.

.

When listening to boots over the years during his life, while I felt it was wrong to do so, there was the possibility of any of that stuff seeing official release in some form (a la 'Crystal Ball') and there was a genuine thrill in peeking behind the curtain to hear things that may yet be reworked and re-purposed. Or released as-is. But for me personally, that changed irreversably after he died and now I have little to no interest in hearing the unfinished, non-endorsed remnants of his life's work. For me personally, not saying anyone else should or does agree, he left behind a massive body of official releases and that's enough.

.

For me, the exception is live concerts because they were performed -- exhibited for public consumption. As opposed to a work-in-progress. I'm all for the careful curation of a body of "live albums" like the one found on the 1999 set. And yes, that's my own form of rationalizing and making it "right" to have someone pick through what's left and decide what Prince might or not have deemed release-worthy. Guess this makes me a hypocrit. Oh well, just trying to make the point that I think it's perfectly reasonable to have conflicted feelings about participating in vault releases.

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Reply #12 posted 12/10/19 11:04am

Todd968

Prince himself said that he suspected somebody, someday will release vault music and it wouldn't necessarily be him. To me , that is a blank check, considering he left no will with further instructions. This is not to mean his work should be dumped into the market, with out regard to Prince-level of standard.

So far, I am not hearing many songs that I would say were fully polished, packaged, "ready to go" but then shelved by Prince himself and put in the vault for future release. Much of the songs seem somewhat short of this. Maybe there aren't as many fully poslished songs in the valut as we think?

I believe the Estate should be respectful in how they categorize and present new releases to the market. Keep finished, semi-finished, experimental/sketches, etc. seperate. Don't throw them into one release. I think there is a buyer for each type.

The disrespect to Prince comes when rough gems are passon on as a polished Prince product that simply didn't get released.

I chose to buy/download only select songs from the 1999 Deluxe release off of iTunes. I love that I was able to only pay for what I wanted and not have to swallow more payments on songs I already have. Not sure why the Estate is continuing to bundle released songs from 1999 (and Purple Rain) when 99% of the people who want those songs already have them.

I ended up buying 10 tracks, which is more than I thought I would. Pretty much, the equivalent of 1 CD of material. It was cool hearing songs like International Lover in his non-falsetto voice.

If the estate can assemble a series of high quality Live Performances, that would sell well, I think.

[Edited 12/10/19 11:14am]

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Reply #13 posted 12/10/19 11:06am

LoveGalore

Todd968 said:

I chose to buy/download only select songs from the 1999 Deluxe release off of iTunes. I love that I was able to only pay for what I wanted and not have to swallow more payments on songs I already have. Not sure why the Estate is continuing to bundle released songs from 1999 (and Purple Rain) when 99% of the people who want those songs already have them.

I ended up buying 10 tracks, which is more than I thought I would. Pretty much, the equivalent of 1 CD of material. It was cool hearing songs like International Lover in his non-falsetto voice.

If the estate can assemble a series of high quality Live Performances, that would sell well, I think.

A remaster is definitively not what you owned prior, so it is different.

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Reply #14 posted 12/10/19 11:29am

Se7en

avatar

There's only one song that's been released so far after Prince died that I feel maybe violated Prince's latter-day values, and that song is We Can Fuck off of Purple Rain Deluxe. I don't think he would have ever released that version (with cursing) had he been alive. Nothing to do with quality, just having to do with cursing.

Flipside of that argument though, I do NOT think he would have gone back and edited/censored already-released work from 1999 or Purple Rain for content.

As far as the Vault tracks, none of the ones off 1999 Super Deluxe bother me. Prince saved these songs for a reason . . . either for future release, to use as inspiration later in life, or just to keep for his own personal playback. One way or another, he kept them. If he was super-concerned with them coming out someday, he would have destroyed them.

Now - that's a very black and white viewpoint. Some of this stuff (as in the case of Lust U Always and Extralovable) has to be addressed as it arises. Those two tracks were left off of 1999 for rape lyrics, and probably rightfully so. Not only do they not align with Prince's latter-day views, but also run the risk of damaging the "Prince Brand".

Jump from PR/1999 to Originals. Do I think Prince would have approved of the Originals songs? A lot of those were "re-created", which I think he'd be against. But would he be against them being out in general? Nah - I think he'd love for people to know just how much he was behind the scenes of other people's music.


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Reply #15 posted 12/10/19 11:37am

kewlschool

avatar

LoveGalore said:

If Prince did not want this shit to be heard, he would've set it on fire. Not curated it and left instructions as to how to access the directory in the vault and find locations for things. Set your mind at ease - Prince was an artist and though these songs didn't make sense in the scope of the releases they were created around, they make sense when taking a deep dive in retrospect.

.

To put it bluntly: There is no longer a future for Prince and everything now is an examination of what he did along the way.

This ^^^^^

99.9% of everything I say is strictly for my own entertainment
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Reply #16 posted 12/10/19 12:11pm

CAL3

kewlschool said:

LoveGalore said:

If Prince did not want this shit to be heard, he would've set it on fire. Not curated it and left instructions as to how to access the directory in the vault and find locations for things. Set your mind at ease - Prince was an artist and though these songs didn't make sense in the scope of the releases they were created around, they make sense when taking a deep dive in retrospect.

.

To put it bluntly: There is no longer a future for Prince and everything now is an examination of what he did along the way.

This ^^^^^

.

This is more rationalizing. It is a point of view, but not the only one.

.

There is no definitive answer. To state otherwise is intellectually dishonest.

.

The question is an ethical one that every fan must answer for him/herself: what right does anyone have to conduct "an examination of what he did along the way," when the "what he did" consists of elements he did not prepare for, nor present to, the public voluntarily during his lifetime.

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Reply #17 posted 12/10/19 12:18pm

LoveGalore

CAL3 said:

kewlschool said:

This ^^^^^

.

This is more rationalizing. It is a point of view, but not the only one.

.

There is no definitive answer. To state otherwise is intellectually dishonest.

.

The question is an ethical one that every fan must answer for him/herself: what right does anyone have to conduct "an examination of what he did along the way," when the "what he did" consists of elements he did not prepare for, nor present to, the public voluntarily during his lifetime.

It's disingenuous to imply Prince was not capable of indicating unreleased music should not be surfaced once he passed away or that he didn't intend on releasing it at some point himself given all that he said on the issue.

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Reply #18 posted 12/10/19 2:57pm

CAL3

LoveGalore said:

CAL3 said:

.

This is more rationalizing. It is a point of view, but not the only one.

.

There is no definitive answer. To state otherwise is intellectually dishonest.

.

The question is an ethical one that every fan must answer for him/herself: what right does anyone have to conduct "an examination of what he did along the way," when the "what he did" consists of elements he did not prepare for, nor present to, the public voluntarily during his lifetime.

It's disingenuous to imply Prince was not capable of indicating unreleased music should not be surfaced once he passed away or that he didn't intend on releasing it at some point himself given all that he said on the issue.

.

Hmmm, good thing I didn't imply that then.

[Edited 12/10/19 14:57pm]

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Reply #19 posted 12/10/19 3:11pm

LoveGalore

CAL3 said:



LoveGalore said:




CAL3 said:



.


This is more rationalizing. It is a point of view, but not the only one.


.


There is no definitive answer. To state otherwise is intellectually dishonest.


.


The question is an ethical one that every fan must answer for him/herself: what right does anyone have to conduct "an examination of what he did along the way," when the "what he did" consists of elements he did not prepare for, nor present to, the public voluntarily during his lifetime.



It's disingenuous to imply Prince was not capable of indicating unreleased music should not be surfaced once he passed away or that he didn't intend on releasing it at some point himself given all that he said on the issue.



.


Hmmm, good thing I didn't imply that then.

[Edited 12/10/19 14:57pm]


You're right.

The very last sentence of your post flatly states it.
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Reply #20 posted 12/10/19 4:11pm

Dandroppedadim
e

Prince created music to be listened to, just enjoy it for what it is - a look into the life and works of a musical genius.
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Reply #21 posted 12/10/19 6:27pm

macaylasdad

holy shit... people think WAY too much here! Look you are a consumer and a Prince fan, you have heard about vault music for years and years. Prince done f***** up and didn't have a will, so what he wanted or didn't want is irrelevant at this point. Vault music is being released and continue to keep his legacy alive... I for one will continue to buy it because it's what I want and what I have waited for, if you are having a case of guilt for buying it? Stop. Buy it, support Prince and enjoy.

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Reply #22 posted 12/10/19 10:03pm

SoulAlive

^^I agree,none of us should feel “guilty” for listening to Prince vault tracks.If he didn’t want us to hear this stuff,he would have left instructions for it to be destroyed or he would have simply destroyed it himself when he was alive.Furthermore,for many years,he freely distributed his music to friends,associates,etc...which is why much of this music was already out there in the first place smile I truly don’t believe that he wanted this music to stay hidden and locked up.He wanted it to be set free.
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Reply #23 posted 12/10/19 10:16pm

ForceofNature

If Prince never wanted these out either by him or after he died, he would have pulled a "Wally" on them instead of keeping all of the tapes in a vault for access. Especially that, combined with Prince's own words saying the material will eventually come out whether or not it is him, and I wouldn't feel guilty about listening to any of this.

[Edited 12/10/19 22:18pm]

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Reply #24 posted 12/11/19 8:21am

CAL3

SoulAlive said:

^^I agree,none of us should feel “guilty” for listening to Prince vault tracks.If he didn’t want us to hear this stuff,he would have left instructions for it to be destroyed or he would have simply destroyed it himself when he was alive.Furthermore,for many years,he freely distributed his music to friends,associates,etc...which is why much of this music was already out there in the first place smile I truly don’t believe that he wanted this music to stay hidden and locked up.He wanted it to be set free.

.

Again, you can rationalize it any way you see fit in order for it feel "right." That's all anyone is doing when they speak in terms of "believing" Prince wanted this or that.

.

Ever keep a diary? Do you have any documents at home with sensitive/private/personal info? Do you make it a habit of burning such items regular in the event that you suffer an untimely death? To suggest that Prince would've sorted through hundreds of hours of tape and destroyed anything he feared might see the light of day if he were to die unexpectedly is... illogical and unrealstic thinking.

.

Yet it is a way to rationalize tomb-raiding. And that's what many are doing.

.

You can "believe' whatever you choose - and that might be meaningful to you (and you alone). It remains a fantasy. Your own fantasy about the workings of Prince's mind.

.

Personally, I empathize with the OP - it IS perfectly reasonable to be in two minds re: the on-going invasion of Prince's privacy.

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Reply #25 posted 12/11/19 9:30am

rdhull

avatar

CAL3 said:

SoulAlive said:

^^I agree,none of us should feel “guilty” for listening to Prince vault tracks.If he didn’t want us to hear this stuff,he would have left instructions for it to be destroyed or he would have simply destroyed it himself when he was alive.Furthermore,for many years,he freely distributed his music to friends,associates,etc...which is why much of this music was already out there in the first place smile I truly don’t believe that he wanted this music to stay hidden and locked up.He wanted it to be set free.

.

Again, you can rationalize it any way you see fit in order for it feel "right." That's all anyone is doing when they speak in terms of "believing" Prince wanted this or that.

.

Ever keep a diary? Do you have any documents at home with sensitive/private/personal info? Do you make it a habit of burning such items regular in the event that you suffer an untimely death? To suggest that Prince would've sorted through hundreds of hours of tape and destroyed anything he feared might see the light of day if he were to die unexpectedly is... illogical and unrealstic thinking.

.

Yet it is a way to rationalize tomb-raiding. And that's what many are doing.

.

You can "believe' whatever you choose - and that might be meaningful to you (and you alone). It remains a fantasy. Your own fantasy about the workings of Prince's mind.

.

Personally, I empathize with the OP - it IS perfectly reasonable to be in two minds re: the on-going invasion of Prince's privacy.

^^^meanwhile has 50 bootlegs and ordered 1999 remaster twice

c'mon baby, where's ya guts?
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Reply #26 posted 12/11/19 10:29am

Se7en

avatar

The question about Vault tracks keep changing with every release.

With 4Ever they included Moonbeam Levels, which was sourced from either a cassette or a high-level bootleg (and before they even owned up to sourcing from cassette). Was the reasoning that WB didn't have access to the masters yet?

With Purple Rain Deluxe, some/most of the Vault tracks were sourced again from cassette. Same reasoning as above? But here, they included We Can Fuck - which again I feel went against Prince's beliefs on cursing. And stuff like using Lisa's version of Our Destiny (instead of Jill's) - judgment calls.

With Piano & Microphone 1983 - they didn't do enough! Again sourced from a cassette (this time all that existed, period). They could have clearly reduced the tape hiss and I've read that the speed was also off a bit. But they chose to leave this one alone. Damned if you do, damned if you don't. I fixed mine with software on my end, sounds much better to my ears.

With Originals - you have many different areas of questioning. First: would Prince even want these to be heard? Second: most of these songs are re-creations using master tapes to achieve what was on Prince's final low-quality cassettes. Third: reverb added at the engineer's discretion. Fourth: low-quality version of Wouldn't You Love To Love me included, as it was cited as being the only source known with this version of the song.

Now with 1999 Super Deluxe, you get a hodge-podge of all of these gripes. Cassettes used in some spots. Some tracks partially re-created. Reverb added where there was none before. Some songs possibly against Prince's latter-day views.

So you see - the arguments keep evolving. For me, I'm OK so far with almost all of what they've done. Maybe lose some of the reverb. And please address all tape hiss - it's almost 2020. I think we have the technology.

We are not at the feared "Justin Timberlake" posthumous duet or Will.I.Am/Pharrell remix stage yet. And I hope we never get there.

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Reply #27 posted 12/11/19 11:31am

ForceofNature

CAL3 said:



SoulAlive said:


^^I agree,none of us should feel “guilty” for listening to Prince vault tracks.If he didn’t want us to hear this stuff,he would have left instructions for it to be destroyed or he would have simply destroyed it himself when he was alive.Furthermore,for many years,he freely distributed his music to friends,associates,etc...which is why much of this music was already out there in the first place smile I truly don’t believe that he wanted this music to stay hidden and locked up.He wanted it to be set free.

.


Again, you can rationalize it any way you see fit in order for it feel "right." That's all anyone is doing when they speak in terms of "believing" Prince wanted this or that.


.


Ever keep a diary? Do you have any documents at home with sensitive/private/personal info? Do you make it a habit of burning such items regular in the event that you suffer an untimely death? To suggest that Prince would've sorted through hundreds of hours of tape and destroyed anything he feared might see the light of day if he were to die unexpectedly is... illogical and unrealstic thinking.


.


Yet it is a way to rationalize tomb-raiding. And that's what many are doing.


.


You can "believe' whatever you choose - and that might be meaningful to you (and you alone). It remains a fantasy. Your own fantasy about the workings of Prince's mind.


.


Personally, I empathize with the OP - it IS perfectly reasonable to be in two minds re: the on-going invasion of Prince's privacy.


It isn't "tomb raiding" when Prince wasn't bothered enough to write a will and the vault legally goes to the estate - surely Prince, crazy belief system or not, knew that. And again Prince's own words regarding this were very clear on the matter. We can go on about "fantasy" or whatever but I implore any fan to simply enjoy the releases and get enjoyment from the music coming out
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Reply #28 posted 12/11/19 12:02pm

CAL3

ForceofNature said:

CAL3 said:

.

Again, you can rationalize it any way you see fit in order for it feel "right." That's all anyone is doing when they speak in terms of "believing" Prince wanted this or that.

.

Ever keep a diary? Do you have any documents at home with sensitive/private/personal info? Do you make it a habit of burning such items regular in the event that you suffer an untimely death? To suggest that Prince would've sorted through hundreds of hours of tape and destroyed anything he feared might see the light of day if he were to die unexpectedly is... illogical and unrealstic thinking.

.

Yet it is a way to rationalize tomb-raiding. And that's what many are doing.

.

You can "believe' whatever you choose - and that might be meaningful to you (and you alone). It remains a fantasy. Your own fantasy about the workings of Prince's mind.

.

Personally, I empathize with the OP - it IS perfectly reasonable to be in two minds re: the on-going invasion of Prince's privacy.

It isn't "tomb raiding" when Prince wasn't bothered enough to write a will and the vault legally goes to the estate - surely Prince, crazy belief system or not, knew that. And again Prince's own words regarding this were very clear on the matter. We can go on about "fantasy" or whatever but I implore any fan to simply enjoy the releases and get enjoyment from the music coming out

.

Prince's words were very clear at various times over the years on a great many matters. And he didn't always follow through with those words.

.

So yes, you are right, from a legal standpoint obviously it is not 'tomb-raiding'

.

bUt from a philosophical perspective... that's open to debate.

.

Which is what this thread was about. But that is beyond the scope of some folks' interest.

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Reply #29 posted 12/11/19 12:10pm

ForceofNature

From a philisophical perspective though, should any of us feel guilty for listening to music that Prince apparently never thought to write any sort of "yo guys don't release these when I am gone" declaration to anyone, at anytime, for any reason in his entire lifetime? Prince technically did follow through with the "these will be released when I am dead" thing by the fact he did not declare anything to the contrary in his entire life legally, or otherwise to anyone.

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Forums > Prince: Music and More > Feelings on the vault tracks