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Thread started 10/08/02 3:03pm

gubbins4ever

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Friday 4th report: Setlist, highlights and detailed commentary and analysis - read!

Prince at the Hammersmith Apollo in London on Friday 4th October: A genius of our time before our very eyes

This was my first Prince performance and hence a life-changing experience. This post is intended to reflect just how special this night was for me. Yes, it’s long! It contains a setlist with comments, followed by notable mentions of special bits I noticed throughout the night, followed by my own heartfelt commentary.

Setlist - all credit goes to Bluebird who’s setlist I more or less copied. Cheers buddy! J The songs are all there, I’m not entirely sure about the order but I can do no better!

Soundcheck
The Ballad Of Dorothy Parker (mostly instrumental. How I’d love to have this on CD! It flowed beautifully and was very relaxing and enjoyable)
Girls And Boys (Guest vocalist. This sounds much funkier than the album version)
Manic Monday (Guest vocalist)
Shake! (Guest vocalist - again much better sounding than the album version)
HCUDCMA (Guest vocalist. Great voice!)
The Ladder (I just managed to hold myself emotionally here! Prince sang this with great power. This is truly an amazing song live)
Thank You Fallettin Me Be Mice Elf Again (Prince coolly and quietly straps on the bass! Then goes loud!)

Main performance
Rainbow Children (Long, winding and extremely enjoyable. Much more captivating than the studio version, with more ‘bite’)
Muse 2 The Pharaoh (Prince’s ‘star and talons’ rap at the end is delivered with more urgency than the album version)
Xenophobia (Not much more than a repetition of the tune on the website but it sounded great and the introduction by Prince was very cool: “THIS IS XENOPHOBIA!”)
The Work Pt. 1 (He kept returning to this when we thought it was over. An old trick which still works well)
A Case Of U (Perhaps one of the sweetest moments)
Mellow
1+1+1=3
Love Rollercoaster (short but got us going!)
Cool As The Other Side Of The Pillow
Strange Relationship (Quiet different but very well updated)
Pass The Peas (James Brown Cover)
When U Were Mine (Prince really enjoyed this one)
Avalanche (It has a sort of chillingness to it. I don’t yet have ONA…)
Family Name (This was a real highlight. Especially when Prince altered his voice like in the album - “If there’s a just God, we’re gonna pay for this” - hilarious!)
Take Me With U (The tune of this sounded glorious live)
Raspberry Beret (See previous comment)
The Everlasting Now

Encore
Power Fantastic (A real surprise! Prince came out wearing a kimono-like white shirt and trousers. He looked almost heavenly and the spotlight on him when singing this wonderful song was beautiful…)
The Beautiful Ones (Sung with real passion)
Nothing Compares 2 U
Diamonds And Pearls (Finally, this well written song is done justice, if just for a short time)
Starfish And Coffee
Sometimes It Snows In April (I just never got this song, but that night it finally ‘clicked’. How many times this seems to happen to a Prince fan!)
HCUDCMA (Extended with more words. Prince lay down on the keyboard and said some very funny things!)
The Ladder (Once again, what a song…)
Anna Stesia (The sole appearance of the symbol guitar, which had real bite. A rousing end…)

A few random and notable mentions

Prince chatting with the NPGMC. He’s kind of quiet and shy but also strangely confident. He’s really funny too.
People picking their songs to guest on.
Prince altering his voice: So clever and a very weird and groovy effect. If you have the album, hearing this is really fun!
Kasumi handing Prince his guitars. I don’t know why but seeing him strap on another tool was great!
John Blackwell - I’m lost for words, amazing!
The Ozzy Osbourne impression!
“This is my job” - Throughout the night, we all realised that Prince lives and breathes music. It’s his passion and he’s sharing it with us.
Prince telling us to sit down and chill out for a bit. Nice!
The audience - it was a classy event but everyone was on his wavelength. Like the best jazz, we ALL helped create the music.
Prince’s clothes - Suits perfectly matched the feel and intention of the evening.
At the end, the musicians left gradually with Prince first as he threw the mike up in the air and walked off!

Commentary

You could listen to Prince’s music for eternity and still not fully appreciate it or understand what it was about. You would never begin understand the beauty of the person that makes it. And whether we like it or not, to reach the fullest awareness of an artist’s music involves understanding the passion, drama and drive of the individual who created it. That’s why in order to truly ‘see’ Prince’s music it must be witnessed in the presence of the man himself as he creates it there before you. On Friday night, many people, including myself, crossed the line for the first time to a deeper understanding of Prince’s music. On that stage he showed us the true depth of his gift. True, the man has made many stunning albums. But his gift possesses such a mysterious power that half of its true magic is in the very air carrying it.

And on Friday night the magic of Prince’s music was like never before. For reasons mostly unknown he has once again become possessed by the spirit of true passion, spirituality and belief in his own genius that characterised his finest works. Once again, Prince is pushing at his own boundaries, stepping into territories even he hasn’t yet mapped. This time, it’s into smooth sexy jazz lead by Muse 2 The Pharaoh, The Rainbow Children and others. On that stage, the conclusion is unmistakable: Prince believed in every song he played that night. His playing is as much for himself as for his audience. Surely such a thing in performers today is rare, especially for someone who has been in the business for so long. However, Prince has lost none of his energy - for him, music is life and life is music. Money, material possessions, fame; none of them are essential to Prince; it is music which flows through his veins. Prince seems to radiate a kind of beauty. It’s difficult to appreciate just who is standing there in front of you. The man whose life has achieved so much for so long is standing there right before you. It’s surreal.

Prince’s technical abilities have become even stronger. He is now at a career high. His falsetto still retains a purity in A Case Of U, unchanged from his earlier years. His guitar playing still is as ferocious and dexterous as ever, exemplified by the biting solos in Anna Stesia. His showmanship is still unparalleled; How Come U Don’t Call Me Anymore saw Prince as funny, sexy, passionate all in one. And the key to all of this: Prince enjoys his music and believes in it. Where he has seemed distant and bored in past concerts, tonight he was involved and happy.

However, this time he’s armed with the most talented assemblage of musicians he has ever had. Each one has such stunning ability on their own instrument. Prince obviously realises this; every musician soloed a number of times throughout the night. Perhaps one could go as far as to say that their talent on their respective instruments equals Prince’s talent on his own. The truest genius, however, is how well Prince has woven them together, with perfect control over the band. A mere hand gesture or instruction and the band changes gear without a lost moment. It’s difficult to believe that a mere quartet of people can create so much music. There were no backing tracks, all of the sounds came from those people - quite unbelievable! Prince is the perfect leader. He understands his place in the band and when to let others shine. It was good to see him stand back and let the band perform as a solid unit and not as a backing for him.

More than ever before, these songs sounded so impressive live that they far superceded their studio counterparts. In fact, the difference could not be greater. Take all the qualities that make the songs so good on their respective albums and find those very qualities vastly magnified on stage. Even with guests’ vocals on Shake! and Girls And Boys those songs sounded far more exciting than ever before. It’s difficult to put a finger on why exactly the songs sound so radically superior. Perhaps it was because they flowed into each other so effortlessly, or perhaps they were played with more emotion or perhaps it was their pure volume! A satisfying answer is impossible to reach. But when you’re dealing with world class musicians that’s not surprising - it takes a genius to understand a genius.

It’s safe to say that for me, this was in its own way the most significant night of my life. To finally see the person who is so influential to me was something that can only be understood by someone by going through a similar process themselves. Only now that I have seen him in the flesh and on top form that I appreciate a world more about Prince than I did before. His music stills sounds the same to me, yet totally different. At this point, words fail me when trying to describe how Prince as a person resides in my mind, what I feel about the colossal volume of music he has made or the gravity of the achievements his career has produced. I can only recall in my own mind something resembling a realisation of what this man has achieved. And as Prince is now back in control of his ability the future is incredibly exciting. I cannot even begin to think what he’s going to come up with next. Prince has always been totally unpredictable and when he’s on a roll, this quality makes being a fan extremely exciting.

I for one find it hard to feel at all negative about Prince after having attended a One Nite Alone show. I’ve learned that one only needs to look at Prince for the qualities that he truly excels at - musicianship, creativity and passion. Why even bother trying to hunt for things he’s not so good at? After all, at the end of the day Prince makes music. He’s an entertainer. Why would someone want to purposely decrease their enjoyment of his music? Are they into S&M or something?! Entertainment is not important enough to suffer unnecessarily over it. If you don’t like Prince or his music then don’t waste your time sweating over it - it’s just entertainment, do something else if you’re not happy! (I would say, however, that it’s entertainment of the highest calibre but that’s just my opinion).

This post goes out as a thanks and a homage to Prince and his band. I could never have predicted the range of emotions that I went through in the Hammersmith, nor how different everything seems since that night. And neither can anyone else. Hence, my advice: see Prince! You could never know how your view of Prince will change, and it will, until you do. His genius is only truly recognisable live. Nothing else comes close. You could listen to his albums all your life and you’d never even touch the surface of what Prince’s music can do for you. For all the time I’ve been a follower of Prince it’s only now that I feel I’ve actually ‘met’ his music and understood it. And what a feeling it is!

Thanks for reading this! I hope Prince brings as much happiness to you as he does to me. Whilst music is never a suitable replacement for getting out there and living your life it can definitely play a part in reaching greater understanding and awareness. The One Nite Alone tour book puts it best: “There r still true artists out there who share this intimate knowledge of what makes us what we r and, thru a single musical phrase or written sentence, can literally open worlds 4 us to explore”.

Now I understand! Anyone else with me?!
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Reply #1 posted 10/08/02 3:10pm

GrecianGoddess

Who did an Ozzy Osbourne impression? Prince?
What did he say?
Good review. Sounds awesome. I like Power Fantastic and The Beautiful Ones. I have seen Prince in concert and I know he can be funny.
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Reply #2 posted 10/08/02 3:41pm

SupaFunkyOrgan
grinderSexy

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Excellent report! So much of what you said is EXACTLY how I felt seeing Prince in April here in LA, USA. This was my 3rd concert. My 1st Prince concert was Jam of the Year 1997, second was Hit N'Run 2000. I had nosebleeds at both those concerts. Because of the membership perks I got 3rd row seating at this concert. The way Prince and the band threw down during the show made the Jam of The Year & Hit N Run concerts look like they were put on by an imposter. The difference is staggering.

The band is the shit. I thought he couldn't have taken the band higher and better than the 94 incarnation of NPG and this band is so much tighter. So many of the things you describe feeling are the same things I felt seeing the miracle of Prince living the music on stage. It is a night I will never forget. Thanks for reminding me how great it really was smile hug
2010: Healing the Wounds of the Past.... http://prince.org/msg/8/325740
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Reply #3 posted 10/08/02 4:24pm

bkw

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Thanks smile
When I read about the evils of drinking, I gave up reading.
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Reply #4 posted 10/08/02 4:39pm

Lleena

Prince did an impression of Ozzy Osbourne dancing, a kind of shuffle thing, it was very funny! big grin
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Reply #5 posted 10/08/02 4:59pm

SupaFunkyOrgan
grinderSexy

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Lleena said:

Prince did an impression of Ozzy Osbourne dancing, a kind of shuffle thing, it was very funny! big grin


Here in the US, he said it was the dance that an old uncle would do smile
2010: Healing the Wounds of the Past.... http://prince.org/msg/8/325740
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Reply #6 posted 10/08/02 8:53pm

EchoOfMySoul

gubbins4ever said:

Prince at the Hammersmith Apollo Thanks for reading this! I hope Prince brings as much happiness to you as he does to me. Whilst music is never a suitable replacement for getting out there and living your life it can definitely play a part in reaching greater understanding and awareness. The One Nite Alone tour book puts it best: “There r still true artists out there who share this intimate knowledge of what makes us what we r and, thru a single musical phrase or written sentence, can literally open worlds 4 us to explore”.

Now I understand! Anyone else with me?!

---
Echo says:

You say thanks for reading, I say thanks for sharing.rose
It is surreal! smile

You are absolutely correct, he is a True Artist,
and his musicians are great as well.

his music heart it forever!
[This message was edited Tue Oct 8 21:00:51 PDT 2002 by EchoOfMySoul]
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Reply #7 posted 10/08/02 9:47pm

Mauve

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LOVESEXY! it that feelin you get...
I think that best decribes that feelin your talking about


thanks for caring
taking the time 4 sharin!

now i wanna go to Europe
[This message was edited Tue Oct 8 21:51:19 PDT 2002 by Mauve]
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Reply #8 posted 10/09/02 1:56am

kafkan

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Great review !

I liked the way a lot of the songs were extremely funked up this nite. Like Muse to the Pharao. On the album there are soft keyboard accents over the rapped bit. In the concert version these accents were extremely forceful and loud adding so much more Umph to the song wink Again he picked the right arrangement for the right medium, the album more relaxed and beautiful to listen to and the concert to get ur groove on.

Utter brilliance !
K.
A new home for deep funk:
http://www.ourlabelrecords.com
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Reply #9 posted 10/09/02 3:04am

alexxa15

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gubbins4ever said:

Even with guests’ vocals on Shake! and Girls And Boys those songs sounded far more exciting than ever before.


so, was my version of Shake good? I need to know! It was difficult to sing over there, also because you can't hear anything, no monitors on stage!
cheers
Alex
-----------------------------------------
Click on the link below to listen to and download for free songs from my band, BRAMA!
http://www.brama.connect.to
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Reply #10 posted 10/09/02 6:25am

CherryMoon

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I agree with Supa and all the rest of you. You kind of forget what it's all about until you have the opportunity to attend a "Live" show.

2002 will easily go down in the history books for fans as one of the most exciting years to be a Prince Fan.

And for all of you who feel he's too preachy on the tour take a look back. He's always been like this, nothing's changed except for his focal point.

Like someone said, the feeling is Lovesexy.

And the quote in the tourbook is dead on it.

Peace Yall and enjoy the days, weeks to come.

Believe me, it just doesn't get any better, until maybe next year.
**************************************************
If the wind blew every petal from your precious red rose wilted
Would U be afraid of what U'd find inside? rose

Prince - Dreamin' About U
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Reply #11 posted 10/09/02 10:02am

gubbins4ever

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You guys are right!

All those years ago Prince found one word which coins perfectly the reams and reams I wrote above trying to describe how I felt at the concert and after...

LOVESEXY

...and see, something in my head has just clicked again! Like so many times with Prince, another thing has just slotted into place and made sense. I finally understand Lovesexy! (I think)

How amazing is it to be a Prince fan?!
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Reply #12 posted 10/09/02 10:14am

alexxa15

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being a Prince fan is sometimes a gift, sometimes a curse...
cheers
Alex
-----------------------------------------
Click on the link below to listen to and download for free songs from my band, BRAMA!
http://www.brama.connect.to
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Reply #13 posted 10/09/02 10:45am

2freaky4church
1

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Prince should live at Ozzy's house; he would learn right fast how to curse again. And how much do you bet little man would try to fuck Kelli. Ha, ha.

woot! headbang
"My motherfucker's so cool sheep count him."
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Reply #14 posted 10/09/02 11:02am

bluebird

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gubbins4ever said:

Now I understand! Anyone else with me?!



just got round to reading this, brought it all back, shivers down the spine time

thanx
<<< my future baby mama

www.justgiving.com/christianmason
feel free to sponsor me and support help a london child smile
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Reply #15 posted 10/09/02 11:18am

LesGrinds

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Congratulations, Gubbins! You expressed perfectly what I experienced the last 3 times I've seen him (ok, we are lucky here in SF).

I think I was the only US person to answer the NPGMC's question about touring by telling P -- Go to Europe!

I am enjoying all the reports; you all really deserved to see and hear this.

This feeling's so good in every single way
I want it morning, noon and night of every day

It IS Lovesexy, dead on it!

Lovely review. Hope you sent it to NPGMC.
__________________________________________
"You can always change your underwear."
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Reply #16 posted 10/09/02 11:41am

GoldiesParade

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Im pleased someone wrote about Friday, it was missed out a little because everyone was at the two shows on Saturday so Friday was already history then. Gubba, it brought Friday all back to me, it was a wonderful weekend with truly wonderful people. Prince fans are the best.
http://www.goldiesparade.co.uk/ - Prince discography, tour history, news and more.
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Reply #17 posted 10/09/02 3:11pm

Freespirit

Truly one of the most beautifully shared experiences I have ever read, pertaining to Prince and his heartful influences. heart I am inspired through your experience once again... "gubbins4ever", truly I am.heart I truly know well the impression of Prince playing for himself, equally if not more...than for his audience, the people that breathe in his every note of creation.(((beautiful sigh))) I would love to comment more... although I must get to work at this moment. rose

Thank you beautifully...and a beautiful day to you. rose heart
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Reply #18 posted 10/09/02 3:13pm

gubbins4ever

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LesGrinds said:



Lovely review. Hope you sent it to NPGMC.


Well, you know I did, and they put it up! I feels so amazing to have this opportunity to have my inner thoughts up there for all, and possibly Prince, to see. It's mind boggling to think!

You know, that was the best thing about Friday night. Finally being brought closer to the creator of the music which is so important to you. Only when you see Prince as a living 'ordinary' person can you understand his music. The knowledge and love of his output is infinately more than what it was before the concert. It's the most amazing but unexpected sensation!
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Reply #19 posted 10/09/02 3:41pm

Malloy

Freespirit said:

[color=blue:d5dfa82acd:23865ad3c7]Truly one of the most beautifully shared experiences I have ever read, pertaining to Prince and his heartful influences. heart I am inspired through your experience once again... "gubbins4ever", truly I am.heart I truly know well the impression of Prince playing for himself, equally if not more...than for his audience, the people that breathe in his every note of creation.(((beautiful sigh))) I would love to comment more... although I must get to work at this moment. rose

Thank you beautifully...and a beautiful day to you. rose heart


I'll have whatever you had for breakfast!!
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Forums > Concerts > Friday 4th report: Setlist, highlights and detailed commentary and analysis - read!