Most people I know have a memory of what they were doing when the song Purple Rain was playing. "I never meant to cause you any sorrow. I never meant to cause you any pain."
Or When Doves Cry. "How can you just leave me standing? Alone in a world that's so cold?"
There's a feeling you get when you hear those lyrics and notes. They resonate deep inside. Make you stop and take notice. Prince's songs were the soundtrack to our lives. We became more of ourselves as we listened.
Prince said in a 1999 Notorious Magazine interview, "Music is real. It affects people, it's real. The other night I went to a club and I watched a DJ control an entire room. Even politicians can't do that."
I hear that people from every walk of life, who listen to every type of music, had a place for Prince. He was both eclectic and talented beyond measure.
Launching 39 albums, winning seven Grammys and making multiple lists of top guitarists of all time. Writing hits for himself and for others. He penned Manic Monday for The Bangles and Nothing Compares 2 U which was sung by Sinead O'Connor.
Elton John said Prince was, "The greatest performer I have ever seen. A true genius. Musically way ahead of any of us."
Yet Prince's music didn't fit into one envelope. He took what he wanted from different genres and he did things his way. He rarely talked to the media but he was often talked about. He showed us that you succeed in life by being authentic. By doing you like only you know how.
Prince was a legend because he made so many people feel something. He didn't just play an instrument, he played our heartstrings. He sang, "Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today to get through this thing called life." We are all getting through it and he gave us the words to say.
Rest in peace Prince. You were gone long before your time. But as you said in your 1999 lyrics, "Yeah, everybody's got a bomb, we could all die any day. But before I'll let that happen, I'll dance my life away." Thanks for giving us all a reason to dance. We'll never forget you. The people's Prince.