independent and unofficial
Prince fan community site
Wed 26th Feb 2020 3:14am
Welcome! Sign up or enter username and password to remember me
Forum jump
Forums > Prince: Music and More > How good is Prince at...
« Previous topic  Next topic »
Page 1 of 4 1234>
  New topic   Printable     (Log in to 'subscribe' to this topic)
Author

Tweet     Share

Message
Thread started 11/04/16 9:50am

rogifan

How good is Prince at...

This is something that has bugged me for a long time. Someone will ask how good is Prince on guitar or piano or whatever and the response is usually comparing him to a master on that instrument as a way of saying he's just ok but not great. Go to a guitar forum and it's well he's no Steve Vai or Joe Satriani or they go off on a rant about what a jerk or weirdo he is; with piano comparing him to the greatest jazz players out there.

What I find interesting is it seems his peers/fellow musicians have a better appreciation for his musicianship than the average joe/player posting online somewhere. In some ways I think Prince is actually underrated by the general public. And it wasn't until after he passed that people realized just how good of a musician he was. Just imagine how different things might be if NPG wasn't so intent on scrubbing any and all liver performances from the internet.
Paisley Park is in your heart
#PrinceForever 💜
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #1 posted 11/04/16 10:04am

Missmusicluver
72

I would say that of course as his fans who have seen him evolve over time, tend to be biased towards him and feel that he is yes indeed, one of the best guitarists and overall musicians. Seems with non-fans or even casual ones don't pay much attention and only associate him with "Purple Rain", so they fail to see what an all around and brilliant musician he is. As we know, since he didn't allow alot of his stuff on YouTube when he was alive, that kept many who didn't follow him or even know who he was, away from seeing his growth over the years as a musician and what an incredible talent he was. Sadly, now that he is gone, they will finally discover what made him so great. He wasn't just known as a guitar player or piano player over the years, (moreso as a showman) so that has a lot to do with when he is compared with the solo guitarists for example, he may not be taken as seriously, until they have actually heard him play. I think as the years go by, he will be even more highly respected and appreciated as one of the alltime greats, that's for sure.

Love is God, God is love, girls and boys love God above~
The only Love there is, is the Love We Make~
Prince4Ever
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #2 posted 11/04/16 10:15am

Lianachan

avatar

He's featured in magazines specific to several instruments, including being on the cover of many (and on the covers of some several times).

I think he's more generally known as a guitarist than as any other particular kind of musician.

"Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge"" ~ Isaac Asimov
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #3 posted 11/04/16 10:22am

precioux

No joke, Eric Clapton was asked "So, what's it's like being the greatest guitar player?"

His response..."You're talking to the wrong person, go ask Prince!"

  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #4 posted 11/04/16 10:26am

petalthecat

avatar

I've thought about this in the past and I think it's partly because he wasn't known for just one thing. If someone is lead guitarist in a band they will often get acknowledgment for being a great guitarist. Because P was great at so many things it seems to water down his accomplishments somewhat. And because ur average music listener knows P from prancing around in a few music vids, they probably haven't really seen how skilled he was on the guitar or piano.
There's always a rainbow 🌈 , at the end of every rain ☔️
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #5 posted 11/04/16 10:35am

Lianachan

avatar

precioux said:

No joke, Eric Clapton was asked "So, what's it's like being the greatest guitar player?"

His response..."You're talking to the wrong person, go ask Prince!"



*cough*bullshit*cough*

"Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge"" ~ Isaac Asimov
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #6 posted 11/04/16 10:36am

0uterageous

it's not valid but....

good enough to get my attention razz

Anybody can agree & disagree in whatever league of playing guitar, piano & etc he belongs to. I just felt for the most part of his career, he was competing with himself. We knew whom were his influences and other musicians that were just as talented as he is. However, he incorporated his own playing styles, techniques and sounds. That's one of the crucial reasons of what makes him a well respected and unique musician

  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #7 posted 11/04/16 10:53am

Mindflux

avatar

Lianachan said:

precioux said:

No joke, Eric Clapton was asked "So, what's it's like being the greatest guitar player?"

His response..."You're talking to the wrong person, go ask Prince!"



*cough*bullshit*cough*

But the thing is, there is no "greatest" really - as many have their own thing and personality going on. There are those who are amongts the greats, like Jimi Hendrix, Jimmy Page, Frank Zappa, Steve Vai, Santana and so on, but you can't really compare them with each other, because they all had their own thing. Prince easily stands up with all of these names though.

And, of course, everyone has their favourites. Eric Clapton was often cited as being the greatest, but great as he was with his style, he was too one-dimensional and kinda trapped within that style for me. But he appreciated Prince's outright versatility (I mean, of all those that I've named, Prince is the only one that could emulate and sound like any and all of them) and it's that, for me, that puts Prince level at the top - he had the chops on almost any style you care to name.

...we have only scratched the surface of what the mind can do...

My dance project;
www.zubzub.co.uk

Listen to any of my tracks in full, for free, here;
www.zubzub.bandcamp.com

Go and glisten wink
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #8 posted 11/04/16 10:56am

Poorlovelycomp
uter

Any and everybody has seen or heard the song let's go crazy and it's guitar solo at the end as well as the climax on purple rain. He always said he played like Santana and I can hear what he was saying. The George Harrison tribute performance will go down in my mind as one of the guitar solos up there with the greats.
"love's the only drug we do in here"-Prince
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #9 posted 11/04/16 10:59am

precioux

Bullshit to you! I was going to look up the link, but why don't you amuze yourself and find it...I've seen it more than once, so it shouldn't be hard hmph! Lianachan said: precioux said: No joke, Eric Clapton was asked "So, what's it's like being the greatest guitar player?" His response..."You're talking to the wrong person, go ask Prince!*cough*bullshit*cough*
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #10 posted 11/04/16 11:00am

paulludvig

Poorlovelycomputer said:

Any and everybody has seen or heard the song let's go crazy and it's guitar solo at the end as well as the climax on purple rain. He always said he played like Santana and I can hear what he was saying. The George Harrison tribute performance will go down in my mind as one of the guitar solos up there with the greats.

But that one was pretty basic by Prince's standards.

The wooh is on the one!
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #11 posted 11/04/16 11:07am

precioux

https://twitter.com/StigA...%5EtfwStig Abell tweeted this....14,000 retweets

[Edited 11/4/16 11:09am]

[Edited 11/4/16 11:10am]

[Edited 11/4/16 11:11am]

  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #12 posted 11/04/16 11:11am

berlinas2k

precioux said:

Bullshit to you! I was going to look up the link, but why don't you amuze yourself and find it...I've seen it more than once, so it shouldn't be hard hmph! Lianachan said: precioux said: No joke, Eric Clapton was asked "So, what's it's like being the greatest guitar player?" His response..."You're talking to the wrong person, go ask Prince!*cough*bullshit*cough*


Not sure if the bullshit response was in regard to Prince's skills or to the quote, but it is pretty widely known by now that Clapton never said that. That being said, I enjoy Prince's playing much more than Clapton, skills aside.
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #13 posted 11/04/16 11:15am

RodeoSchro

He was my favorite guitar player, so that's all that matters to me.

I mean, there are people whose favorite guitarist of all time is Johnny Ramone. Do you know how many solos Johnny Ramone played in his entire life? Maybe 10? He didn't believe in them. And yet, in 2003 he was number 16 in Rolling Stone's list of top 100 guitarists and he made Time Magazine's list of top 10 guitarists. All he played were power chords, but he played them in a way that pleased millions of people.

As a hack guitarist myself, but one that can play stuff some people think is "complicated", I rather imagine there aren't many pop/rock/soul musical pieces that only 1 or 2 or 15 guitarists in the world could play.

The greatness lies in the creation of the piece, IMHO.

  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #14 posted 11/04/16 11:23am

journalism16

Poorlovelycomputer said:

Any and everybody has seen or heard the song let's go crazy and it's guitar solo at the end as well as the climax on purple rain. He always said he played like Santana and I can hear what he was saying. The George Harrison tribute performance will go down in my mind as one of the guitar solos up there with the greats.


I wholeheartedly and definitely agree with you.
Erin Smith
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #15 posted 11/04/16 11:32am

Lianachan

avatar

Mindflux said:



Lianachan said:




precioux said:


No joke, Eric Clapton was asked "So, what's it's like being the greatest guitar player?"


His response..."You're talking to the wrong person, go ask Prince!"





*cough*bullshit*cough*




But the thing is, there is no "greatest" really - as many have their own thing and personality going on. There are those who are amongts the greats, like Jimi Hendrix, Jimmy Page, Frank Zappa, Steve Vai, Santana and so on, but you can't really compare them with each other, because they all had their own thing. Prince easily stands up with all of these names though.



And, of course, everyone has their favourites. Eric Clapton was often cited as being the greatest, but great as he was with his style, he was too one-dimensional and kinda trapped within that style for me. But he appreciated Prince's outright versatility (I mean, of all those that I've named, Prince is the only one that could emulate and sound like any and all of them) and it's that, for me, that puts Prince level at the top - he had the chops on almost any style you care to name.



Yup, I agree completely. The bullshit was just that Clapton ever said that, regardless of how many times people repeat it.

(Edited to reply to the post I meant to reply to)
[Edited 11/4/16 11:42am]
"Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge"" ~ Isaac Asimov
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #16 posted 11/04/16 11:36am

precioux

Lianachan said:

precioux said:

No joke, Eric Clapton was asked "So, what's it's like being the greatest guitar player?"

His response..."You're talking to the wrong person, go ask Prince!"



*cough*bullshit*cough*

My apologies....I was trying to throw an interesting tidbit out there, honestly thinking Clapton said it. Apparently Stig Abell tweeted this (where I saw it originally), and Snopes debunked it.

  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #17 posted 11/04/16 12:08pm

Militant

avatar

moderator

The Clapton quote has been debunked, but Steve Vai said this when playing in Vancouver on the same night as Prince...



"Hey everyone, thanks for coming out. It's pretty amazing you all are here. Although, if were you I'd be next door seeing the greatest guitarist of all time, Prince"

  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #18 posted 11/04/16 12:15pm

rogifan

Lianachan said:



precioux said:


No joke, Eric Clapton was asked "So, what's it's like being the greatest guitar player?"


His response..."You're talking to the wrong person, go ask Prince!"





*cough*bullshit*cough*


No but Clapton did write this after Prince passsd:

http://www.getsurrey.co.u...g-11233610
"I'm so sad about the death of Prince, he was a true genius, and a huge inspiration for me, in a very real way.

"In the 80s, I was out on the road in a massive downward spiral with drink and drugs, I saw Purple Rain in a cinema in Canada, I had no idea who he was, it was like a bolt of lightning!

"In the middle of my depression, and the dreadful state of the music culture at that time it gave me hope, he was like a light in the darkness.

"I went back to my hotel, and surrounded by empty beer cans, wrote Holy Mother.

"I can't believe he's gone."
Paisley Park is in your heart
#PrinceForever 💜
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #19 posted 11/04/16 12:26pm

rogifan

Mindflux said:



Lianachan said:




precioux said:


No joke, Eric Clapton was asked "So, what's it's like being the greatest guitar player?"


His response..."You're talking to the wrong person, go ask Prince!"





*cough*bullshit*cough*




But the thing is, there is no "greatest" really - as many have their own thing and personality going on. There are those who are amongts the greats, like Jimi Hendrix, Jimmy Page, Frank Zappa, Steve Vai, Santana and so on, but you can't really compare them with each other, because they all had their own thing. Prince easily stands up with all of these names though.



And, of course, everyone has their favourites. Eric Clapton was often cited as being the greatest, but great as he was with his style, he was too one-dimensional and kinda trapped within that style for me. But he appreciated Prince's outright versatility (I mean, of all those that I've named, Prince is the only one that could emulate and sound like any and all of them) and it's that, for me, that puts Prince level at the top - he had the chops on almost any style you care to name.


That's why I hate these greatest lists. Often times they're quite biased too. Any Rolling Stone list is going to heavily favor certain artists and decades. I know I'm biased as Prince fan so I'd probably rate him higher than others but I'm also a Zeppelin fan and have no time for Jimmy Page being top 5 anything. Go watch Zep's RRHOF performance with Aerosmith and then go watch Prince's performance. No contest in my book. In fact I've watched many RRHOF ceremony performances and most of them suck. I remember Billy Gibbons talking about how high a bar Prince set that night after his performance. Traffic was inducted that night too and Dave Mason (who wasn't a Prince fan) said he was blown away by Prince's performance.
Paisley Park is in your heart
#PrinceForever 💜
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #20 posted 11/04/16 12:38pm

RodeoSchro

Clapton did not say that thing about Prince. But in an interview in the June 20, 1985 issue of Rolling Stone, I recall that he made a point of saying that Prince was doing things in music that no one else had done.

I can't find the actual text of the interview online anywhere. If anyone has it, or can find it, I'd love to see it again to see how good my memory is.

  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #21 posted 11/04/16 12:56pm

rogifan

paulludvig said:



Poorlovelycomputer said:


Any and everybody has seen or heard the song let's go crazy and it's guitar solo at the end as well as the climax on purple rain. He always said he played like Santana and I can hear what he was saying. The George Harrison tribute performance will go down in my mind as one of the guitar solos up there with the greats.

But that one was pretty basic by Prince's standards.


Unfortunately because NPG is so stingy with live performance video allowed online that's pretty much all people know. Damn shame.
Paisley Park is in your heart
#PrinceForever 💜
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #22 posted 11/04/16 12:59pm

rogifan

RodeoSchro said:

He was my favorite guitar player, so that's all that matters to me.

I mean, there are people whose favorite guitarist of all time is Johnny Ramone. Do you know how many solos Johnny Ramone played in his entire life? Maybe 10? He didn't believe in them. And yet, in 2003 he was number 16 in Rolling Stone's list of top 100 guitarists and he made Time Magazine's list of top 10 guitarists. All he played were power chords, but he played them in a way that pleased millions of people.

As a hack guitarist myself, but one that can play stuff some people think is "complicated", I rather imagine there aren't many pop/rock/soul musical pieces that only 1 or 2 or 15 guitarists in the world could play.

The greatness lies in the creation of the piece, IMHO.


This I never got. I don't doubt the influence of the Ramones as a band but the guitar playing never specifically stood out to me.
Paisley Park is in your heart
#PrinceForever 💜
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #23 posted 11/04/16 1:04pm

rogifan

Militant said:

The Clapton quote has been debunked, but Steve Vai said this when playing in Vancouver on the same night as Prince...






"Hey everyone, thanks for coming out. It's pretty amazing you all are here. Although, if were you I'd be next door seeing the greatest guitarist of all time, Prince"



Eddie Vedder said the same thing right after Prince's passing. Like I said I think he was more respected by his peers than the public at large. Though if the estate would allow more live stuff out there public perception might be different.
Paisley Park is in your heart
#PrinceForever 💜
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #24 posted 11/04/16 1:17pm

ldmendes

avatar

Prince was a musicians musician, people studied his style and technique.. he could do what others couldn't. Play all the instruments, often better than everyone else, sing all the vocals, arraigned the music, produce the music, mix the music, distribute, market, mentor, brought the kick drum to a new level, write for other bands, create other bands, put on a phenomenal live show, taught himself to play..no one could do that..we won't see anything like him for a long time..if ever. His place is history is secured!

..Hello, who is it?
Yes, this is a prettyman, Princey!
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #25 posted 11/04/16 1:20pm

tigerlilyluv

I've never seen any videos of him playing the drums as good as he played the piano and guitar. I think he's ok on the drums.

  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #26 posted 11/04/16 1:20pm

GrayDorian

rogifan said:

This is something that has bugged me for a long time. Someone will ask how good is Prince on guitar or piano or whatever and the response is usually comparing him to a master on that instrument as a way of saying he's just ok but not great. Go to a guitar forum and it's well he's no Steve Vai or Joe Satriani or they go off on a rant about what a jerk or weirdo he is; with piano comparing him to the greatest jazz players out there. What I find interesting is it seems his peers/fellow musicians have a better appreciation for his musicianship than the average joe/player posting online somewhere. In some ways I think Prince is actually underrated by the general public. And it wasn't until after he passed that people realized just how good of a musician he was. Just imagine how different things might be if NPG wasn't so intent on scrubbing any and all liver performances from the internet.

Hmmm, that’s an unusually interesting topic, though I have to admit that I’m pretty much clueless, if I’m being frank. With Prince especially, I know I’m completely unable to disassociate myself and have an impartial opinion. It’s been far too long, and I was just a child, when I became totally hooked on Prince and his music.

I’m a big Stones fan too (well, at least all the classic music from back in the day) and, when I read your comment about his peers having a better appreciation of his talent, it immediately brought to mind that irksome dismissal of Prince attributed to Keef, describing our hero as ‘an overrated midget’. sad

As much joy as those ole Strolling Bones songs have given me over the last 40 years, it still rankles with me.

I know that I will never have the opportunity to buy Keef a nip and chew the fat with him, but if I did, I’d be sorely tempted to ask why he took such an uncharitable swipe at our man…especially when we are haunted by a copious supply of highly lauded & successful, less talented musicians and (mediocre at best) singers than Prince, who would be far more deserving of his ire.

I know the Stones are far more popular than Prince (I’m not COMPLETELY stupid/ignorant) but huge popularity of music doesn’t necessarily reflect outstanding merit. I can’t help but wonder, when comparing Prince to himself, which of Prince’s many talents it is that Keef holds in such dismal disregard.

Presumably oh-so-modest Keef considers himself to be a better songwriter and guitarist than Prince (both debatable IMHO, though beauty is in the ear of the beholder), but what about on bass? Or piano? Or drums? Or as an arranger? Or as a producer? Or as a lyricist? As for singing, well let’s not even go there. Maybe Keef is comparing Prince to Brian Jones, who was supposedly blessed with lots of talent and reputedly able to turn his hand/ear to many instruments.

I know Prince must have worked like crazy over the years, but surely there is little debate that he was HUGELY blessed with an unnatural abundance of natural talent. I don’t know my arpeggione from my electric guitar, but at least that’s how I see/hear it.

You can’t expect anyone to be Randy Newman, Pat Metheny, Victor Wooten, Oscar Peterson, Buddy Rich, Bob Dylan, Duke Ellington, Quincy Jones, and Sam Cooke all rolled into one, but personally I thought Prince gave it a bloody good go! wink

I’m sure there are no doubt many, many talented composers/multi-instrumentalists/arrangers/producers/lyricists/singers that I am completely unaware of, but I am struggling to think of many genuine peers in terms of Prince’s level of all round talent (ie. who can pretty much do it all), but then I fully admit I am completely and massively biased of course.

I suppose Stevie Wonder and Todd Rundgren spring to mind, and maybe Curtis Mayfield too. The next generation boasts arguably lesser talents (still hugely talented of course) like Jonny Greenwood, PJ Harvey and Trent Reznor. I’ve got a lot of time for Sufjan Stevens, who seems to be blessed with a myriad of musical talent too. Will any of these handful be held in the same regard as Prince a couple of hundred years from now? Probably Stevie, I suppose. I’d really like to think that posterity will prove to be much kinder to Prince than the present.

If a small green Martian called Mick (Irish ancestry apparently, but no relation to Jagger, though his head is almost as big) landed in my back yard tonight, brought out a huge purple ray gun, pointed it to my head and asked me to let him hear the best of popular music, there’s a whole slew of exceptional and unique talents I could turn to (such as Sly, James, Stevie, Joni, Miles, Marvin, Bob Dylan, Ella Fitzgerald, Ray Charles, Muddy Waters, Aretha, Chuck Berry, Neil Young, Bruce Springsteen, Louis Armstrong, Frank Zappa, Richard Thompson, Al Green, Duke Ellington, Randy Newman, Billie Holiday, P-Funk, Beatles, Stones, Isley Brothers, Santana etc etc etc).

However, if picky ‘Mick’ was only willing to listen to one artist, Prince would be my automatic and instant choice. No contest. If he only had time to listen to one song, I’d probably plump for Controversy (though I wouldn’t necessarily think of that as my very favorite, but for some reason I kinda think it reflects Prince as well as any other).

Hey, I could even use Controversy to teach Martian Mickey his first few words of English…’people call me rude...’ wink

Or perhaps his first utterance would be, “I can’t understand human curiosity”. biggrin

Anyway, to sum up, I have absolutely no idea, ha-ha! Succinct, aren’t I? If I kept this meandering drivel going for a little while longer, I could change my user name to the Midnight Rambler. smile

  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #27 posted 11/04/16 2:10pm

Missmusicluver
72

^^That comment that Keith made about Prince, I wouldn't put too much emphasis on it because Keith always had a beef with someone, but I still love him though! I think he said that a long time ago when Prince opened up for the Stones back in 1981 when Prince got booed. He did have some nice things to say after Prince died though. Seems like many musicians really loved and respected Prince's talent. cool

[Edited 11/4/16 14:12pm]

Love is God, God is love, girls and boys love God above~
The only Love there is, is the Love We Make~
Prince4Ever
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #28 posted 11/04/16 3:41pm

precioux

ldmendes said:Prince was a musicians musician, people studied his style and technique.. he could do what others couldn't. Play all the instruments, often better than everyone else, sing all the vocals, arraigned the music, produce the music, mix the music, distribute, market, mentor, brought the kick drum to a new level, write for other bands, create other bands, put on a phenomenal live show, taught himself to play..no one could do that..we won't see anything like him for a long time..if ever. His place is history is secured! yeahthat
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Reply #29 posted 11/04/16 3:57pm

ldmendes

avatar

Prince is playing the drums during the sign o times tour. He was known to write a full song with instrumentation overnight.sign o times was written and produced in a few months. The guy was unbelievable.. on a different plane
..Hello, who is it?
Yes, this is a prettyman, Princey!
  - E-mail - orgNote - Report post to moderator
Page 1 of 4 1234>
  New topic   Printable     (Log in to 'subscribe' to this topic)
« Previous topic  Next topic »
Forums > Prince: Music and More > How good is Prince at...