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Prince, we hardly knew ya. At least not like this.
The Purple One answered questions from fans and Arsenio Hall — and even played advice guru.
Prince has never seemed so normal, so comfortable and so un-self-conscious on television as he was Wednesday night on “The Arsenio Hall Show.” Yep, that Arsenio who had Prince as a guest back in the early ‘90s.
Except for Hall’s opening monologue, Wednesday’s hour-long program was devoted to Prince. With the New Power Generation and 3rdEyeGirl, he played two new songs (“FunknRoll,” “Mutiny”) and one old one (“She’s Always in My Hair”), and Liv Warfield, one of his former backup singers, offered a tune from her new album.
In conversation with Arsenio and the studio audience, Prince – wearing a series of turtlenecks and fur- or fringe-trimmed vests -- was quick, funny and short but to the point.
Here are some things Prince revealed:
Photo: Arsenio Hall Show/ CBS Television Distribution
Prince/ AP photo
A local legend is joining the late-night wars, at least for one evening.
Prince's appearance Wednesday night on "The Arsenio Hall Show" won't be limited to a musical performance. Promotional material insists that he's "taking over" the program, which makes you wonder if his well-received turn on "New Girl" has him convinced that he can handle a comedy monologue.
It's not the first time Prince has appeared on one of Hall's programs. He famously burned a Star Tribune review of one of his shows on the set of "Arsenio." Will he play pyromaniac again? Will he announce the release date of his long-anticipated new album?
Find out at 10 p.m. tonight on WUCW, Ch. 23.
Whether or not you caught Poliça on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” last night, you may still want to check out the online clips of the band’s performance. The Minneapolis throb-pop quartet played a powerful version of "Spill the Lies," a highlight from its "Shulamith" album, for the ABC airwaves (posted below). It also played a second song not featured in the broadcast – a song not featured on any of their records, in fact. It’s a cover of Lesley Gore’s 1963 girl-power anthem “You Don’t Own Me.” Obviously, it sounds quite different and darker (and pretty awesome) in their hands. Click here to see the clip.
The other interesting post-script on last night’s Kimmel appearance was drummer Ben Ivascu’s wardrobe choice, a “Drone, Not Drones” T-shirt. That’s the most high-profile appearance yet of the mantra made famous by Low’s Alan Sparhawk at Rock the Garden, and it is particularly good timing.
Minneapolis scenester Luke Heiken, the man behind the campaign, is putting together a 28-hour drone concert Doctors Without Borders benefit concert, tentatively scheduled Feb. 7-8 at the Cedar Cultural Center with a rotating cast of musicians (including members of Low). More details on that soon.
Anyone who envied Ivascu's T can buy their own shirt at Dronenotdrones.com, also benefitting Doctors Without Borders.
Dale Watson hasn’t yet left that overpriced condo heap known as Austin, Texas, but he might be closer to affording a little lake place here in Minnesota after his appearance last night on “The Late Show With David Letterman.” The old-school honky-tonk hero and Lee’s Liquor Lounge mainstay took to NBC to tout his new album for Red House Records, “El Rancho Azul,” which became the St. Paul label’s first release to ever make it to Billboard’s country album charts (it debuted at No. 57).
Letterman himself reportedly got a listen to the record and made the request to get Watson on the show. You can tell by the clip below he was genuinely excited to have him. The performance might have been the biggest broadcast audience Watson has played to since his last time on “A Prairie Home Companion.”
Dale will be back in our neck of the woods for another Lee’s gig on July 29. He’ll also be at Rollie’s in Sauk Rapids a night earlier. Then he will return less than a month later to the Minnesota State Fair – where he’s a favorite player on the Heritage Square stage – for multiple sets Aug. 22-23.
Anyone who didn’t know or had forgotten how much of a guitar god Prince really is, last night’s two-song performance on “Late Night With Jimmy Fallon” was a lesson that will stick. Members of Fallon’s house band, the Roots, also got an education on never lending one of your prized instruments to the purple guru, because he might not take care of it very well.
Introduced by Fallon as “one of the most legendary and influential musicians of all time,” Minneapolis Celebrity #1 returned to the NBC airwaves for the national unveiling of his all-female band 3rd Eye Girl, the hard-rocking group he debuted on the final night of his three-night stand at the Dakota in January. That’s right: He brought an almost metallic rock band to a jazz club. Got a problem with that?
Clearly, the Fallon crowd didn’t mind the heaviness, as fans ate up his opening song “Screwdriver,” which was released as a single of sorts a few weeks ago via the new site 3rdeyegirl.com. He got even heavier and screwier in the second tune, “Bambi” (reinvented from his 1979 eponymous album), which ended with a crescendoing guitar solo that lifted so high Prince finally let the instrument fly high into the air and crash to the ground. See the video below. Turns out, it wasn’t even his guitar.
According to Roots frontman Black Thought’s Twitter feed, the instrument belonged to their guitarist Kirk Douglas. Here’s one of a few tweets about it via @Blackthought: "#Prince borrows @kirklloyd guitar, uses during @LateNightJimmy show, refuses to autograph THEN slams it to floor in the end! #rockgodstatus"
And another one: "Kirk your sh[**] is BROKE son!...it's bleeding son... BADDD. #theinstrumentformerlyknownas"
Douglas also tweeted a photo of splintered pieces of the guitar afterward. Presumably, there are no hard feelings over the incident, since the Roots guys were all clearly in awe of the appearance. Roots drummer and bandleader Questlove is well known to be one of the biggest Prince fans around, enough to be headed back to Minneapolis next Saturday for ex-Revolution drummer Bobby Z’s second annual tribute/fundraiser bash A Benefit 2 Celebrate Life at First Avenue, featuring other Prince alum and Fallon’s fellow “Saturday Night Live” alum Maya Rudolph’s tribute band Princess. Questlove will get here early enough to spin a DJ set on Friday night.
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