Imagine - Minneapolis amid the grit and washed out grime of the mid 1970s, the winter air slicing like ice, the streets lined with gray, dirt embossed snow. Imagine a boy, small, shy, skin the color of chocolate and cream, eyes bright with intelligence and pain and anger and lust.
Imagine being Prince Rogers Nelson, confined to the lonely northern edges of the middle U.S. – subject to bullies and rejection and all the usual alienation that comes with youth, coupled with the fact that you are different – a different color, a different creed, the square peg shoved sideways into the roundest of holes. Imagine Prince, walking down Main St. U.S.A., heads turning as his freak flag flaps in the cold wind.
Yes, Prince was the greatest. The greatest pop guitarist, songwriter, performer – our most potent lover and our brightest of stars. But more importantly, he was a silken, velvety, sequined purple beacon of individuality, of pure creative expression - one of the best example of the joy that comes with self love and the art that comes with fearlessness, that the world has ever known. Emerging from the blandest of environment, Prince created a dreamscape, a sensual wonderland he allowed us all to inhabit. He taught us to dance, to grind, to shake our asses.
But best of all, Prince taught us to be ourselves - and that in being ourselves, we were always at our most beautiful.