Thursday, June 22, 2017

"Purple Rain" by Prince & the Revolution

Top 10 Alert!
Gold Record Alert!
Song#:  2078
Date:  10/06/1984
Debut:  28
Peak:  2
Weeks:  16
Genre:  R&B, Rock, Soundtrack

Pop Bits:  Prince's "Let's Go Crazy" was in its second and final week at the #1 spot when this third single from the Purple Rain soundtrack debuted. It blasted right into the Top 30 in its first week, which was rare for the time period. The big ballad raced up the chart and got stuck in the #2 spot behind the #1 Wham! hit "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go." The song would also get to #4 at R&B and #18 Rock. At the time, the soundtrack was nearly at the halfway point of its massive 24-week run at the top of the album chart. This classic track would go on to be one of Prince's signature songs and would often close his live performances.

ReduxReview:  Epic, emotional, and iconic. This is arguably Prince's peak moment as a performer, musician, and songwriter. He would have hits after this, but it just seemed that all he had worked for since his debut album culminated in this track. Results from a Rolling Stone readers poll on the best Prince songs had this one at the top of the list. Many consider it his masterpiece. Indeed it is an amazing track, but I do have to say it would probably rank at the low end of my Top 10 favorite Prince songs. He's just done other work that I could listen to at any given moment. This one takes a little time and commitment and occasionally I'm just not in the mood. However, it is a bona fide classic.

ReduxRating:  9/10

Trivia:  Triple Shot!  1) This was one of three songs used on the soundtrack that Prince recorded live in concert. The other two were "Baby I'm a Star" and "I Would Die 4 U." The songs were recorded in 1983 at the First Avenue club in Minneapolis. Later when prepping the songs for the film and soundtrack, additional overdubs were added and there were some alterations to the songs. "Purple Rain" was actually over eleven minutes long, but then Prince removed a verse and it reduced the running time of the song to over eight minutes.  2) Following Prince's death in 2016, this song became popular enough to get back on the Pop chart. It would peak at #4 while topping the iTunes songs chart.  3) As mentioned in an earlier post, Prince was worried this song sounded too much like Journey's "Faithfully" and sought out Jonathan Cain's advice and approval before moving forward with the tune.


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