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Friday, April 29, 2016

Dearest Prince...Guest Blog Post by Nicole Jones

Last week the world took a major hit smack dab in the face when the news broke that Prince Rogers Nelson had suddenly passed away at the age of 57. Another musical icon gone. The first person that I thought of was my sister from another mother, Nicole. I posted a picture with the word, "HUGS" and typed seven letters..."No words," because I didn't have any. My mouth was open but the words refused to leave. It was as if they were in as much shock as I was.

My sister, Nicole is Prince's #1 fan. So, I asked her if she would write something for the world to read in honor of Mr. Prince Rogers Nelson.

Thank you Nicole for a beautiful tribute! Yes, his music IS immortal.

Dearest Prince,

I have been under your spell forever. I knew when I first heard you speak the words "Dearly Beloved" in the beginning of Purple Rain, I would never be the same. Who was this man? The purple. The lace. The heels. The hair. The shiny guitar. The falsetto. The swag. 

You exploded into my world. I had never seen anyone like you. I would buy your records and sit in my room for hours, reading the lyrics on the backs of the albums. I started writing like you - 2's, 4's, 8's, U's. I devoured your music. I became your fan.

I loved you when I was too young to understand your genius. All I knew was that I was listening to magic. I remember being around nine years old, locking myself in my room and playing the Sign ‘o the Times album over and over and over again. I thought you were speaking to me. Just me. I didn’t think I’d ever hear a song as beautiful as Adore. I wanted to walk down the aisle to Forever In My Life. When I heard you manipulate your voice, the way you’d stretch in a million different directions within the span of a few seconds, it was as if you were trying to reach every part of all of us. I would listen and listen until I was intoxicated, exiting my room, head spinning.

Your music became my safe place. I could drown out the whole world – family, school, stress. Your music was the very first thing I reached for when I needed something to cheer me up, when I was in mourning, when I wanted to celebrate, when I wanted to dance, when I wanted to vent, when I wanted to smile, when I wanted to cry and get it all out.

Last week’s news knocked the wind out of me, like I’d lost a family member. It seems crazy to feel so devastated about a person who I've never officially met, or have never had a real conversation with. But your impression on my life is indelible and permanent. My life’s memories are interwoven with your music. You provided my soundtrack. I guess I naively thought you were immortal and would never die. Seeing your name linked with past tense verbs makes my head spin. I don’t think I’ll ever fully comprehend.

I’ve been in deep thought this past week, trying to figure out why this loss has been so profound for me. I read somewhere that each and every person has someone who resonates with them. Oftentimes, it’s someone of a creative nature. Artists have a way of reaching the most inner core of our souls, that place that identifies our actions, feelings and sense of self.When the creative entity one identifies with passes away, it rocks ones fragile core. Equilibrium must be reestablished. It’s almost like I needed to reboot.

But I promise not to wallow too much. I will listen to your music because that IS immortal. Your beautiful, eclectic, brilliant, weird, genius music. It's an inspiration to us all to know the effect we can have on people that we don’t even know. It’s a motivation to be great at what we do without shortcuts and staying 100% true to ourselves. Our passions can outlive us and mold millions. Our days can be up long before we are ready and all that’s left is the impression we’ve left. And my sweet Prince, what an impression you've left. I hope you’re playing in the sunshine.

Darling Nikki

"I want to live life to the ultimate high. Maybe I'll die young like heroes die". -"Under the Cherry Moon" 1986

Nicole Jones is a wife and mother who resides in Atlanta, GA. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family, exercising, reading, and of course – listening to Prince.

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