One of the best stunts 89.3 the Current has pulled in its 13 years on the air was playing Prince nonstop for 30 hours straight after his death in 2016. With the second anniversary of that sad day in Minnesota history nearing on April 21, the St. Paul-based public radio outlet is going out on a Prince limb again, this time premiering a new 24-7 music stream via its website dubbed Purple Current.
The new online feature – which officially went live just after midnight Friday via TheCurrent.org -- will not only deliver Prince hits and deep cuts around the clock, it will also offer tracks by many of the artists who either inspired the late Minneapolis legend, or who were inspired by him.
“A half hour into listening to Purple Current you’re likely to have heard artists as varied as James Brown, Santana, Nooky Jones and Public Enemy,” the Current’s program director Jim McGuinn said in an announcement from Minnesota Public Radio. “We are committed to tracking and celebrating the tremendous output of great music in this vein that is released daily.”
Click here to see the full playlist so far. Pretty cool mix, going from John Coltrane to Desdamona, ZuluZuluu into the Time, and "Forever in My Life" into "Friends 4 Sale."
The Current is hosting a free Purple Current launch party today (Friday) from 4-6 p.m. at one of the prime locations of hometown Prince lore, the Capri Theater in north Minneapolis, with dancing and a performance by Jessica Manning.
Joining a roster of three other full-time audio streams at TheCurrent.org (Local Current, Radio Heartland and Rock the Cradle), Purple Current is another MPR project funded by the Minnesota Legacy Amendment's Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.