Wednesday, February 28, 2018

"Raspberry Beret" by Prince and the Revolution

Top 10 Alert!
Song#:  2328
Date:  05/18/1985
Debut:  37
Peak:  2
Weeks:  16
Genre:  Psychedelic Pop

Pop Bits:  After a six-month tour that supported his mega-hit masterwork Purple Rain, Prince returned to the studio to record a follow-up album. For this outing, Prince decided to change things up a bit and make an album that had a more psychedelic feel to it. Of course those trippy sounds don't necessarily translate into songs with commercial appeal, yet that wasn't a concern for Prince. At this point in his career, he could do about anything he wanted and so he came up with Around the World in a Day. Prince also didn't want a huge promotional push for the LP, so it along with this first single got pushed out with little fanfare. Despite that, it was obvious that radio was gonna jump on anything new from Prince and indeed they did with this song. It debuted right inside the Top 40 and headed directly up the chart. Prince had to settle for a #2 peak, but it was another multi-chart hit reaching #3 R&B, #4 Dance, and #40 Rock. The song would help the LP spend three weeks at #1 in the summer of '85.

ReduxReview:  I loved this song when it came out. I thought it was a really good transition tune coming off of Purple Rain. It was breezy, carefree pop that was almost like a second chapter to "Take Me with U." The album was something totally different. Anyone looking for the hit material Prince had been churning out the past couple of albums was not going to find it on Around the World in a Day, save for this first single. I thought it was rather bold for Prince to push out this experimental LP following the huge success of Purple Rain. Not everyone appreciated it, but I've always like the album and liked the fact that Prince wasn't going to settle for just writing the same types of songs that made him a superstar. He had a lot more to offer and this album certainly showed some new colors in the Princely purple palette.

ReduxRating:  9/10

Trivia:  Although this was the first single in the US, it was not the first released in the UK and some other territories. The track "Paisley Park" was the lead single in the UK. The reception for the song was fairly tepid as it peaked at #18. "Raspberry Beret" was then the second single and it did slightly worse getting to #25. "Paisley Park" would not be issued as a single in the US.


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