When Prince died suddenly on April 21, 2016, artists and fans alike set out to rediscover his brilliance in music. Fortunately, Prince was one of the most prolific studio wizards of his generation, and we are lucky to have a plethora of recordings to choose from, despite the existence of many hours of recordings never heard by the public in The Purple One’s storied “vault”. 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 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, some 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.
This session is a must-listen for any fan! These eight instrumental tracks sound more like well-crafted compositions rather 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…)
Kick back and funk out, below:
Rest in Peace, Prince. The world is a whole lot less funky without you in it.