Tributes for a fallen Prince around the world
“Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today to get through this thing called life.” – Prince
The year 2016 is starting to look like a terrible year for music as another icon has passed away: Prince (or Prince Rogers Nelson) at the age of 57. With his passing, the world has been cast in purple to mourn the past few days.
Prince’s death comes in the wake of the passing of another LGBT music icon, David Bowie, last January.
Likewise, like Bowie, Prince’s androgynous features, amorphous persona, and flamboyant appearance made him a hero in the eyes of the LGBT community.
The death and life of a Prince
The exact cause of death is still unknown pending autopsy results. However, what is known about Prince’s death is that he was found unresponsive in his home in Paisley Park on Thursday.
Prince– like Bowie- was considered a Renaissance man of music, being able to not only write and sing his own songs, but also to play a number of musical instruments.
He had several albums under his belt, both as a solo act and as part of a band (The Revolution and The New Power Generation). He won seven Grammy Awards, a Golden Globe Award, and an Academy Award.
He also wrote and produced a number of hit songs for other acts, often under a pseudonym.
With his trademark sexual lyrics and outrageous sense of fashion, he was inducted in the Rock and roll Hall of Fame in 2004.
Moreover, Rolling Stone ranked him at number 27 of the Top 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.
Tributes for a Prince
To mark his death, a number of tributes had been run this past five days, ranging from musicals on-stage to all-weekend tributes on music channels.
Vh1 ran a weekend memorial marathon starting with Prince’s iconic movie, Purple Rain, and then a block of his most memorable music videos.
MTV also did the same when the news first broke, except that they accidentally ran a music video of the Fresh Prince (a.k.a. Will Smith). Not cool, MTV, not cool.
Filmmaker Spike Lee threw a block party called “Prince We Love You Shockadelica Joint” in Brooklyn to celebrate the life and music of Prince. Over 1,000 New Yorkers attended the event.
The weekly TV show Saturday Night Live had a special show devoted to him, dubbed “Goodnight, Sweet Prince.” Meanwhile, Broadway shows like Hamilton and The Color Purple had special segments devoted for him.
The Internet showered the world of pictures lit up in purple, like the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans and the LA City Hall.
From Prince’s Paisley Park residential compound to the First Avenue Club in Minneapolis, Minnesotta where he first broke out, from Hollywood in LA to Times Square in New York, and from Australia to London, people sang and danced Prince’s songs to commemorate his life.
And the tributes continue to roll in for the coming days, from a burlesque rendition called Quintessential: The Purple Rain in New York, to more shows in London and Australia.
Even NASA released a shot of a purple-hued star system, saying: “A purple nebula, in honor of Prince, who passed away today.”
Lastly, President Barack Obama issued a statement declaring: “As one of the most gifted and prolific musicians of our time, Prince did it all. Funk. R&B. Rock and roll. He was a virtuoso instrumentalist, a brilliant bandleader, and an electrifying performer.”