When the album Purple Rain came out I rushed it home and played it in a non-stop loop with headphones on for hours in my room Its music became the soundtrack of our entire sophomore year in high school. It blared out of car windows after school, waterskiing on the lake, at house parties, at prom. The Purple Rain concert tour was nothing less than mind-blowing. Living in the southern Bible Belt, local critics were appalled at Prince’s theatrical antics of licking fingers and undulating across the stage. But at 16 I was absolutely liberated!
By high school Prince’s music had become iconic in my generation and continued schooling me through my 20s and into adulthood. His lyrics pulled back the veils to eroticism and sensuality, beyond that though was his composition. He took all of his inspiration from James Brown, Hendrix, Joni Mitchell, Led Zeppelin, Stevie Wonder and materialized it into his own pure, rich, ethereal, musical talent. Anytime Prince’s music plays it’s an invitation to a celebrate the senses. It invites us to dance, to be in our bodies, to fantasize, to sing, to raise our hands in the air, to blaze open our hearts and be intoxicated by its ribboned texture. More than an invitation, he dared us to be as bold and big and exquisite as we could possibly be.
His passing last week has left me deeply mourning this loss. It’s impacted millions of people including politicians, seasoned musicians, actors, artists. Even NASA paid tribute by tinting purple one of their supernova nebulae photographs from the Hubble Space Telescope. I’m 16 again listening not only to the Purple Rain album, but so much of his music. And I keep trying to understand why his passing is felt so deeply.
"Life is just a party and parties weren't meant to last." Prince, from "1999"
His songs “1999”, “Let’s Go Crazy” and so many others displayed his core belief that “Life is just a party and parties weren’t meant to last”. And then there were songs like “I Would Die For U”, "The Beautiful Ones" and of course “Purple Rain” in which he offered his heart up to the altar. He was someone so connected to spirit that it informed everything he did, his lyrics, his music, his style, his cause, his evolution, his revolution, his will, his regeneration, his innovation. And as musician Quest Love said, his energy, not just his music, was so prolific that it seemed it would never shut off.
Astrologically we shared the same birthday, June 7th, and the same moon in Pisces. Perhaps that’s why he felt like a soul brother. This is a second significant loss for me in three weeks, the first being my beloved friend who also lived life with unabashed style, humor and vibrance. It feels as though integral members of our team blasted out into the universe never to return again. In their place is a void that feels so vast and devastating, yet simultaneously inspiring.
Last week the full moon in Scorpio shook us by our lapels and asked, “What do you really want?” I feel these losses are resounding invitations to step up to the threshold of who we are at our deepest core. Can we finally turn the key and make the agreement to connect to our truest self? Can we be guided by inspiration, “in-spirit-ation” and live life now from that place?
A colleague of mine, said that this passing has left her feeling groundless. Yes, we are being shaken, not just with Prince’s death, but universally. Who are we when we release our attachments of shoulds? Who are we at our deepest core? What jewel within us is rising to the surface? Who would we be if we stripped it all back and found our own internal fire? Perhaps the luminosity of this fire scares us so much that we remain somnambulists. Mmm, uh-uh, no thank you!
Loss is a reminder to come back to the party. We are not permanent. We seek thrills and adventure in extravagant vacations and outings, but we are missing the real adventure which is every day life! If we got up every morning realizing that each day is truly another gift, how would we experience it then?
Prince was an iconic representative of what life can be when we live, love and express ourselves fully. It’s not that we have to be as flamboyant, or even as talented, but rather dare ourselves to be big, be expressive, be connected, be vulnerable, be open, be light, be YOU at your most fabulous core!
We each have atomic energy in the trillions of cells which make up our bodies. What is this energy calling you to be?