Few memories of my oh-so-eighties childhood bring a smirk to my face as quickly as those of my father and his eclectic musical tastes. At home, we were accustomed to the never ending medley of what we, the kids, called “Old Fogie Music” coming from our HiFi system. I know, what the heck is “HiFi?” Nevermind that. My dad, a former Rock-n-Roll bass player, had settled quite comfortably into the stereotype of a “boring old dad” and strived to be ever more boring and more, well, old. My father had a weakness, however.
There was a seldom-seen side to him that would appear when prompted by a particular stimulus. It would cause his neck to move spastically. His toes would tap against the floor and his hands uncontrollably slapped at his thighs. The cause of this strange and erratic behavior? Funk. My old man was a funkaholic. My dad was powerless to resist the slap of a bass and the command of a boisterous soul-man. “Get up!” shouted the Godfather of Soul. “Get on up!” responded my boring old man.
By the mid-eighties, my father’s affliction had been somewhat dormant with very few outbreaks. The funk seemed to have faded from pop-culture. Rock-n-Roll was just Rock. Soul music had become “Rhythm and Blues.” Even Stevie Wonder was using a drum-machine by that time. My dad sipped his coffee safely to the sleep-inspiring harmonies of Crosby, Stills and Nash and occasionally bobbed his head to the mathematically-sound rhythms of The Police if he was feeling a bit peppy. All was well and right for an Old Fogie, until the summer of 1984 when one tiny, soft-spoken musical genius made a movie called “Purple Rain” and forced my dad to relapse.
“No one man should be that talented!” my father would complain while cooking us his famous Raisin Oatmeal as “Little Red Corvette” played notably louder than the usual Billy Bragg or Aaron Neville soundtrack we were previously accustomed to. My dad was a Prince fan.
Thirty years have passed since that fateful summer. Dad is gone but the funk lives on. To this day, in somber moments I hear “Purple Rain” as I think of my old man. Memories of fun and adventure always leave me singing, “Let’s go crazy! Let’s get nuts!” As for the too-talented funky beast that my Dad hated to love? The artist known–then formerly known–then known again as Prince is still at it. Ever the enigma, he has emerged once again and announced that he will be releasing a brand new solo album as well as a debut album with his new band 3rd Eye Girl on September 23rd, 2014. Listen with caution. You too may be a funkaholic!
From Huffington Post:
[row enable_animation=”false” seqspeed=”150″][column size=”6″ offset=”0″ hideipad=”false” hideiphone=”false” fadein=”false” scale=”false” position=”none”]“ART OFFICIAL AGE,” described as a “classic Prince record” in its press release, is a 13-track solo record, meshing soul, funk and R&B”
“ART OFFICIAL AGE” tracklist:
1. ART OFFICIAL CAGE
4. THE GOLD STANDARD
5. U KNOW
6. BREAKFAST CAN WAIT
7. THIS COULD BE US
8. WHAT IT FEELS LIKE
9. affirmation I & II
10. WAY BACK HOME
13. affirmation II[/column][column size=”6″ offset=”0″ hideipad=”false” hideiphone=”false” fadein=”false” scale=”false” position=”none”]“PLECTRUMELECTRUM” is the debut album for Prince and his new band, 3rdEyeGirl, promising a funk-rock blend.”