Purple Pain
David Graham

David, thanks for holding out and then falling upon your contrarian sword. It is bold of you to swim against the purple current.

You noted Prince’s guitar artistry, which was, indeed, plentiful. Amazing. It also became the focal point of too many of his performances. You probably didn’t watch it, but if you had seen SNL’s Prince tribute show shortly after his death, you would have seen his (still, admittedly) riveting live performances of songs that appear to be mere setups for guitar shredding. Those songs, ultimately, are forgettable (to me). Even though Prince’s amazing ability is on full display, they take a back seat to relentless over-the-top ego. Ego, of course, is a huge part of rock/pop/funk/everything else he was, but at some point, it would be nice to get back to the songs — his greatest contributions to music.

He was a brilliant musical composer/craftsman and his talents were vast. I’ll miss the songs. I’ll stop to watch the shredding in the videos of his live performances, but it’s his brilliant song craftsmanship that will endure longest.

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