Prince was one of the most prolific studio wizards of his generation. While The Purple One passed away more than three years ago, we are lucky to have a plethora of recordings to remember him by—and that’s not counting the untold hours of recordings still locked down in his “vault” at Paisley Park. One of the best gems we dug back up in our nostalgic dives through Prince’s archives: the incomparable Loring Park Sessions ’77

The mind-blowing improvised funk sessions feature a 19-year-old Prince on keys/guitar, Andre Cymone on bass, and Bobby Z on drums, held in the Loring Park, MN office rehearsal room of Prince’s first manager, Owen Husney. The young master also takes on drums and bass throughout the session, switching it up for a thoroughly impressive, tight session. Even now, 40+ years after it was recorded, the music still sounds fresh and ahead of its time, and some of today’s biggest acts (looking at you, Vulfpeck) seem to have clear sonic connections to this early minimalist-funk sound.

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This session is a must-listen for any fan! These eight instrumental tracks sound more like well-crafted compositions than the improvised jams that they are, and serve as a glowing example of the truly one-of-a-kind, prodigious talent that Prince displayed in just about any endeavor he tried (We even hear he was a pretty solid basketball player in his day.)

Rest in Peace, Prince. The world is a whole lot less funky without you in it. Kick back and funk out, below:

Prince – Loring Park Sessions

[Originally published April 2016]