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Five years into This Thing Called Life … After, another visit to MPLS and Paisley.

1. The Memorial

Those solemn moments in the atrium of Paisley, standing with Fam, looking at the beautiful floral arrangements, accepting that all that remains of Our Beloved lies in an urn shaped like his creative center, while listening to his music, felt like … a memorial. I wasn’t in favor of moving his ashes – but do understand the purpose. At least this time there was warning. In 2016, many of us had no idea what we’d walk into and ended up losing it emotionally. This time, I did well, all the way up until … it happened - Nothing Compares 2 U drifted down from the speakers, permeating the space, piercing my heart. Just as I began to panic, Tomi, literally one of the most amazing Paisley Park Tour Guides, ushered us out. I don’t know if he remembered my issue, but I was standing there like a two-year-old with my fingers in my ears {facepalm}. Tomi gives the best hugs, heartfelt, meaningful. I am grateful he was there. Fam left offerings of love at a fence outside and were able to write out messages of love.

Afterward, there were Fam discussions of folks hoarding ticket reservations to this FREE event, and then not attending. What the...

2. The Muses

Beyond Vanity (Denise Matthews) I am not really Team “Insert Name of Muse.” For the “Well, she only had his attention for 5 minutes,” folk, um, that’s about 5 minutes longer than any of us did, so maybe we should let that go? IMO, they all played an important role in his life, and I would pretty much gladly have traded places with any one of them. That said, the two women he actually married both communicated in their own ways on the 5th anniversary of This Thing Called Life … After.

I just have to say that Mayte deciding to open up lines of communication with his Fam via the Clubhouse App was just amazing. Couldn’t do anything but listen to her and want to give her a big hug. There was just a huge sense of love and loss there. Thinking of all that she lost … and yet, she showed nothing but love and respect for Prince and his Fam. She asked US questions and listened to US! LoveForOneAnother.

3. The Music

Desperately missing live music. Didn’t make the usual Bunker’s trip. No Paisley Park After Dark either. {Currently pouting}.

4. What's Missing

Again, live music. Ugh. Cannot wait until the Age of Covid ends!!! There were some events, I personally am not keen on too much togetherness at present.

As a foodie, I’ll just go ahead and admit that I’m still in my feelings about the lack of Minnesota Grilled Cheese and Cowgirl Mini Cookies in the NPG Music Club.

LoveForOneAnother at all levels. I’ll get to constantly-complaining fans/Fam momentarily. For now, I must speak on the folks who worked for/with Prince at one time or another in their careers being unkind to fans/Fam, because they deem them less than. The wisdom in being unnecessarily rude to those who continue to Adore Prince Until The End of Time escapes me. Not talking about protecting oneself from the “out there” fans, I mean, in the Prince-centric gatherings, some folks are being ugly and snobbish, just because. For many, the ones who were actually part of the trip, still represent the man in some ways. The hardcore-seen-him-1000x-on-various-continents Fam won’t stop loving Prince because of the foul treatment, but may stop supporting those artists left behind. The 4/21ers, as some are not-so-lovingly called, may be turned away from his music and never really learn The Truth. What’s the goal? I see people, with my own eyes, lording their past experiences over others, to what end? Reasons he sang, “…men aren’t fit to rule.”[1]

Spirit. Soul. In 2016 there were real candles and scents that gave the building a sense of life. IMO, that’s part of what was missing from the memorial. Intellectually & from a legal standpoint, I grasp the concept of city ordinances, liability, etc. Ultimately, Paisley Park is a museum and, well, seems like a museum. I do hope more live music and dancing will return in the future.

Also, IMO, the museum tour could use more 2010-2011 items to get folks in the know and ready for Welcome 2 America July 2021 release.

5. The Meaning?

Ain't nothing ever come from complaining Xcept a bitter heart, that's true…
The songs we sing They used to mean somethin’ Now every other one is just mean…”[2]

There is supposed to be a difference between being a fan and being Fam. I love Prince. I don’t always love the ones calling themselves Fam. There is a difference between venting for a moment, and just constantly complaining. The negativity about each and every decision made, with no offer of alternative positive action is just out of control. It would be super cool if people would contact the appropriate parties directly with complaints, in an effort to facilitate change instead of just publicly bad-mouthing the whole operation and judging the heck out of Fam who don’t agree. The world has never had and lost such an extraordinary spirit. We’ve never been here before. We don’t know all the answers. We do know that sitting around complaining, being negative, and judgmental will not help bring honor or respect to his legacy, or help Paisley Park continue to stand as a monument to all that Prince was, is, & ever shall be.

Much Love 2 U,


IG: @violetesq




[1] Lyrics from The Everlasting Now, The Rainbow Children, Prince, NPG Records (2001). [2] Lyrics from Ol Skool Company, LOtUSFLOW3R, Prince, NPG Records (2009).

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