The realization that we weren’t going to be able to attend Prince’s Piano & A Microphone Atlanta concert hit me like a heartbreak. “We’re coming back to town that day.” My husband reminding me that we would be out of town for spring break, and attending the concert that I’ve dreamt about, was just not an option.
On Monday April 11th I heard that Prince had to reschedule the concert due to illness and that tickets were still available. Excitement poured over me as if God had just winked and nodded at me to say “I’ve gotcha covered”.
I’ve been a fan since Prince’s album 1999, which was released in 1982 and I was just 12 years old. Vinyl records and music videos were the center of my teenaged years. I remember MTV launching and staying up to watch it “blast off” at midnight. The next day a group of us went to my friend Chris White’s house and sat around all day with our eyes glued to his TV watching music videos. From the 1999 album 1999, Little Red Corvette and Delirious were all top hits and I loved them all. When I first saw his music video and Prince walk out under red lights, in his shinny purple suit, hand in his pocket and began to sing Little Red Corvette, I knew he was a star.
My hubby and I headed to midtown, in typical awful ATL traffic, parked and walked over to the Fox. Concert goers all around us, talking about how they saw him at the Fox during the Purple Rain tour, my hubby was one of those attendees, the excitement growing, the vibe was surreal, one of my bucket list items was finally getting x-off.
We took a quick moment to snap a selfie outside the Fox.
Then headed in just in time to find our seats and take it all in. The ushers were all over, very helpful group, but we knew they were there to also prevent pictures during the concert. The Fox was VERY specific about the requirement for no cameras, no cell phone use during the concert or they would be confiscated. I’m not really a rule breaker and know that these instructions were really from the Purple One himself. He wanted his audience to fully experience the performance and the emotions, so I planned to follow the rules.
There were photo opps prior to the performance so most people were snapping until the lights went down. The imagery on the screen went to Prince with his famous third eye then morphed into other poses of him until the screen was filled with a grid of Prince images and his outline appeared from behind the screen. The Fox went crazy! He had his cane but didn’t really seem to need it, presented as just a prop. He walked around the stage and piano a few moments while we all were screaming.
Once finally seated at his new purple piano he began to light it up with none other than Little Red Corvette! He mixed in Dirty Mind as if he was on a two turntable mixer and not a piano. Wildness evoked cheers, singing, jumping, fist pumping craze. Atlanta loves Prince and he felt it, he fed off of it.
He moved into a Vince Guaradi cover of Linus & Lucy which he slowly turned while seating, towards the audience and showed us just how fast he could play the piano with one hand. He was playing around, having fun, showing us just how honed his mastery really was.
He took a few mins to sincerely apologize for rescheduling due to illness but said “but we’re here now”. Always living in the moment. He began to play a funky tune and told us about his father and how he played funky jazz, that he didn’t sing just would add a few “uns, bips, and oooh ahs.” So Prince played one of his father’s beats and oooh ah’ed and said “doesn’t that sound cool?” Why yes it did.
After A Case of You the Joni Mitchell cover, he got up and walked off stage, clearly moved by his own lyrics and raw emotions. Came back and said “Sometime I forget how emotional these songs can be”. During Controversy he twisted the lyrics and put a gospel spin on the tune including asking us “Do you love God? I love God”.
Throughout the concert my emotions were all over the place, I laughed, I cried, I left the concert hot and turned on. Who didn’t?
Prince’s performance gave us everything, he poured his soul into this concert and tour. Fans around the US that were fortunate enough to see him on his Piano & Microphone tour all know the feelings. They’ve echoed my comments that his performance was impressive, not just impressive for a man of 57 but that he crushed it at all levels.
His performance took us into three settings: a dance party, church, and bed.
This is why we all in some way connect to his music, it reaches our universal living interests and opens up all of our senses. During the concert we experience the flowing smell of incense, the sound waves of music, visual creations of a skilled performer, and the sound of killer vocals reaching upwards of 5 octaves, on pitch and sexy as hell.
When we left the concert we were on a high, I tweeted exactly how I felt after experiencing his talent.
Once the news hit of his death, I was crushed, the world was crushed, guess we’re all still in shock. People began to search the Internet for the news, to confirm that this wasn’t a hoax, to see his tweets prior, tweets from the Atlanta concert goers…and then my tweet went a bit viral.
We all wanted to hold on, feel those deeply connected emotions again. But he was gone, the elevator descended, the reaper came.
Prince thank you for sharing your glorious gifts, we will live larger than life and in the moment because of you. We are all #transformed
- Little Red Corvette / Dirty Mind
- Linus & Lucy (Vince Guaradi cover)
- His fathers jazz tune
- Nothing Compares 2 U
- Joy in Repetition
- Muse 2 the Pharaoh
- U Got the Look
- Pop Life
- Elephants & Flowers
- I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man
- A Case of You (Joni Mitchell cover)
- I Feel for You
- The Most Beautiful Girl in the World
- I Would Die for U
- Heroes (David Bowie cover)
- Diamonds & Pearls
- How Come U Don’t Call me Anymore
- Do Me, Baby
- I wanna Be Your Lover