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Photo Inez & Vinoodh / Artwork Reverend

5 Years Without Prince

By Housequake

It’s the 5th anniversary of Prince’s untimely passing, and we have asked you how you’ve dealt with the loss, your opinion of the music that’s been released since, and what you hope to see happen in the future in order to keep Prince’s legacy and music alive for future generations. 

We have compiled a few stand-out responses from our Facebook, Twitter & Instagram posts below.

5 Years Without Prince
Photo Inez & Vinoodh / Artwork by Reverend.

Contributions

The day Prince passed I was coming back home from taking my son to Football. My phone flashed an alert quoting TMZ confirming Prince had passed. I thought it was a hoax and refused to believe it. In the UK, we go to BBC News for the facts. So I checked there and was devastated to see it was true. Five minutes later, my wife came home and gave me a “do you know” look. I immediately started to cry. I was a 43-year-old grown man, but could not believe it. My first album (Purple Rain), first gig (Nec Birmingham 1990), favourite artist. I had every album. Part of my life since I was 10, and he was gone. It felt like I had lost a close friend it hurt that much. I immediately played his music, and have done so most days since. The greatest comfort we all have from him. He was so prolific, and I am proud to still be a massive fan of a one-off talent.

Chris Powell

Prince’s loss to the world remains huge. He was far more than an artist he was MUSIC itself. To call him the greatest of all time feels underwhelming to his impact. He lived life on his terms. Seeing him play live, an out of body experience. Hearing a guitar solo where guitar and Prince moulded into one, truly a revelation. His piano playing bewitching. But he was more. Far more. A cutting edge fashion designer. A campaigner for Black rights. A businessman changing the commercials of the music industry. A great philanthropist, always caring for others but not needing the media spotlight to virtue signal. His music remains timeless, as impactful now as it was then. His music, the soundtrack of many of our lives.

When in the darkest moments of our lives, Prince’s music provides the light. In the happiest moments, his music elevates our joy. His hunger to push the boundaries, the benchmark for other artists to aspire to. He lived for music, experimenting, Breaking the boundaries. These define his legacy. The world is still learning today just how phenomenal this man, from humble beginnings in Minneapolis, has been. Paisley Park remains a beacon of hope for those wanting to be the best they can be. He leaves a huge void for us. Impossible to fill. Music from the vault underling his genius but reminding us how much we miss him. I just hope that he is throwing the most amazing concerts and after parties on the other side that one day I will again be on barrier to experience. 

Matthew Jeffery

I felt like I’d lost a friend. I celebrate him by listening to his music. I think that the one thing I’m scared future generations won’t know is his mastery of live performances. I would love to see some of the live performances released. He recorded every show, there is so much there to share.

Leigh Russell

I’ve loved the releases since his passing, but seems a lot of focus on his creativity as a song writer, musician etc. Think there needs to be more focus on the incredible live shows he did throughout his career, showcasing his talent as a live performer, his incredible bands/musicians throughout the years and the huge variety of songs he performed of his own and covers of other artists. I would love a collection of his live performances like the Rolling Stones often release.

Liam Clarke
5 Years Without Prince
Photo Inez & Vinoodh / Artwork by Reverend.

I feel like a piece of my heart and passion was … extinguished. Yeah work is work and family life is family life but, that one constant I had was Prince and his music. I’ll take it back to March 9, 1997, when Biggie was killed, I was done with East Coast NY Hip-Hop and then there was this ‘Woman’ I had a crush on @ an old job. I had no chance with her but, she was listening to The Gold Experience and it’s like a light switch went off in the artistic part of my brain. I had to go backwards and get every album Prince did and each one was a journey and trip. It became the soundtrack to my life and still is to this very day. Hell … I even married a Prince Fam. I needed to be with and around someone that would understand the newfound love of Purple Sounds that I discovered. It’s been a hard 5 years. My wife Barbara Rogers was hit even harder about ‘our’ loss of PRN. This coming Tuesday we’re both going to Minneapolis and pay our respects. Me for the 1st time her for the 3rd time.

Qaid Amir Ali

I’m in Ireland. He and I shared the same June 7th birthday and every year since I first found Prince’s music in the very early 80s, I’d think on my birthday – “I wonder what Prince is doing now”. When he died, birthdays lost a tiny bit of wonderment and sparkle. As for his music releases since his death? I’ll just quote Stephen Hawkins – “Intelligence is the adaptability to change”. I think it sums up Prince and why he’ll live on through his music, for future generations.

Bernadette Ryan

The day he passed, I was off working on a funeral program for my friend’s mom who passed days before Prince. All of a sudden, I get text messages, phone calls, DMs asking have I heard the news. I thought it was a hoax. Then the horrible news was announced. I was in a funk for months. I wanted to immediately go to Minnesota and I did, in September of that same year. I wanted to “walk” in his steps. I visited some key places such as The Capri Theatre, the music wall, Calhoun Square just to name a few. It’s still hard to process that he’s not here. The music is his legacy. That’s his gift to us. A timeless footprint of what the world can see of him. To keep his memory alive, the music needs to be released. After all, he stated that numerous times. The people in town were equally mourning. Everyone had nice things to say about him. Felt like I got a peep into his life. Let that same music unify his diverse “friend” base and the world. Show and express human kindness to one another. Let his lyrics make you happy, heal you, comfort you and love on you.

Monica Alicia
5 Years Without Prince
Prince’s final concert in Atlanta on April 14, 2016. Photo Amiee Stubbs

I thought Prince was immortal. April 21, 2016, was devastating. I couldn’t breathe. The man that I never met was my best friend. Prince was there with me when no one else was. I received texts and phone calls from people asking me if I was alright. I wasn’t. Prince impacted my life that much and I didn’t know what to do without him. His music is timeless. It didn’t matter what year it was Prince always had a message for that moment There will never be another Prince in my lifetime. No one can match his skill in music, showmanship, fashion, and knowledge. I appreciate the new music being released and sometimes I feel guilty for buying it because I don’t know if Prince thought it was perfect. I’ve been listening to Prince since I was 9. I’m 49 now and I won’t stop. My heart hurts knowing he’s not here anymore. His music and legacy will live on. 

Dani Moore

I’ll never forget the day he passed. I got an alert on my phone that there was a death at Paisley Park and I knew it in my bones, our beloved had passed. I worked just blocks from Paisley Park so I left work to go there and mourn. It rained a bit but then the clouds parted and a rainbow appeared. Such a gift from above. Prince’s untimely passing was devastating. I mourned him by attended the street dance at First Ave. in MPLS and singing Purple Rain, at the top of my lungs-with thousands of others-all decked out in Prince memorabilia. A night I will never forget. His music soothes my soul & brings me comfort. I pray the estate continues to responsibly release his treasured albums. I’m eternally grateful that Prince adored his fans and would spontaneously open his door to us for impromptu concerts, albums release parties, or dance parties. Seeing him in his element, shredding the guitar, mere feet away, is an absolute gift I will always treasure.

Jennifer Jo

To me, he’s been the “Funk Pole” in addition to the North- and South Pole. But his legacy is imprinted in the ethers. It took me some time to catch the signal again. Rest in Power.

Crumblegg

I still can’t believe it’s true. A sadness remains, a strange emptiness, a feeling of something missing as if electricity has stopped running its current through a part of me. With Prince, there was always something exciting to look forward to and inspired by—a new album, new style, a thrilling concert. Each new album was a soundtrack to my life, I played it for months after each significant release. I miss the NEW work, the latest Prince. Knowing there will never be new work again is so weird and sad, almost unthinkable for me. But Lord knows he gave us plenty, and while I’ve been grateful for the vault releases and deluxes, they’ve yet to release something that gives me that “fresh” Prince excitement. I know there’s plenty they can choose from. I’m looking forward to Welcome 2 America. The unheard material is the closest thing we’ll have to keep his spirit alive. We’re lucky to have it. I’m greedy for more. As always, I’m thankful to him.

Mark Penta

Haven’t dealt with it. It’s something I find myself choosing not to believe … but keep being forced to remember. Having never met him, it kind of makes it easier like that. I’m surprised the estate has released so much so soon. For decades I thought when we finally got to hear the material in the vault it would be released in drips and drabs over many many years. While I’m pleased there is so much material, I do wonder if other things such as concert audio from after shows will now ever see the light of day … especially when the estate had already released so much Sign O The Times material. We need another box set of after shows to accompany the existing and future box set releases! For the future, I think his work needs to be incorporated into academia more. His workflow intensity should be made an example of and used to show what can be achieved as an artist … and all before the digital age.

Vincent Vega

Since he physically left this earth, I’ve tried to keep his legacy alive. Playing his songs, talking about his music, giving interviews to the press… I cherish the friendships I’ve gained through his music. I’ve met people from all over the world, we might not agree on everything and have different meanings. But we share at least one thing, the love for his music. I’m thankful for everything he gave us. And I keep looking forward to the next song that comes from the vault. Any format will do… it’s about the music.

Stijn

I’m a 19-year-old musician/artist and Prince is essentially the primary reason I do what I do. Prince has been in my life since before I even had one, my father has always been a fan of his and so his music and concert videos were playing non stop in my house since before I was a baby. There’s a VHS tape of me at 2 years old copying whole Prince concerts as it was playing on the TV and since then I knew I wanted to be an artist and performer and wanted to do it all, just like Prince did. When he passed it felt like a close family member had passed away and it affected me deeply and still does to this day. His music and his values of hard work and love for one another helped raise me to be who I am now and to continue to strive to be the best person I can be. I will try my best to keep his legacy alive in my own music and it’s been great to see the whole community coming together in the years since his passing. His music and legacy will live forever, I’m sure of that. May he continue to rest in peace, although I’m sure he’s putting on the best show up in the clouds right now

Ryan Antony D’Auria
5 Years Without Prince
Prince at his final concert in Atlanta on April 14, 2016. Photo Evan Carter

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About the author

Housequake

Hi, my name is Aaron. In the daytime a User Experience Designer and 24/7 Prince fan since 1984. I registered & created Housequake.com on June 7, 1997, because at the time there was little else to read and discuss on Prince, except perhaps on alt.music.prince. I started a forum, people gathered and I think the rest is history.

1 comment

  • Thank you all for your personal and heartfelt testimonies about Prince’s impact on your lives. His death is (and always will be) devastating. I’m equally grateful that I witnessed a musical genius take the rule book, rewrite it, and rip it to shreds. All before he strut into the afterlife in his high heels. #RIPPrince

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Hi, just a moment...

Have you enjoyed reading so far? We are a non-profit and ad-free Prince fan site, and we like to stay that way. So could you help us out a bit with the expenses running Housequake and become a patron? It's very much appreciated!

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