For a fan like me who loves Prince’s entire career but is especially fascinated with the Purple Rain era with The Revolution, this book is the holy grail of Prince books. Instead of simply giving us a list of studio sessions as a simple reference book, Duane Tudahl presents a compelling narrative (with quotes from Prince as well as those who worked closely with him) to give us a month-by-month — often day-by-day — account of Prince’s work schedule, discussing what was going on in Prince’s career and life during these sessions. The author draws upon previous interviews but also conducted many new interviews for this book, and the result gives the reader a unique new perspective never before captured in a book about Prince. There is no gossip or dirt here. The focus is on the music, as it should be. You still get glimpses into Prince’s personal life through the eyes and ears of those who worked closest with him, but respectfully so, and only in relation to how it influenced his music. In interviews and podcasts promoting the book, Tudahl talked about the years of his life that he spent devotedly and meticulously working on it, and his devotion is evident. It is clearly a labor of love. It was a huge thrill for me to read about what was going on in the studio during the Purple Rain era and thinking about what was happening in my life at that time, a time when I was a young teen and Prince’s music consumed me completely. For someone like me who discovered Prince in 1983 and has been obsessed with his music ever since, getting an insight into how this music was conceived and created is a gift that I never dreamed would be possible. During the time period covered in the book, Prince was working on his own music as well as music for The Time, Vanity 6, Appolonia 6, Sheila E., and others. The book covers what is arguably Prince’s most prolific time period and documents it in extreme detail while never sounding boring or too scholarly. It’s written in simple language that allows you to focus on the story and the songs and not get bogged down in an elaborate writing style or editorializing. The focus is on Prince’s music, which is why this book is such a joy to read. I sincerely hope that this book sells well because I would love to see additional volumes covering other eras in Prince’s career. Thanks Duane for a fascinating book!
I also highly recommend that you check out the two podcasts below, both of which feature interviews with the author. Michael Dean and Dr. Funkenberry are two of my favorite podcasters who cover Prince. Forgive me for not name dropping the other great Prince podcasters, but these are the two that I listen to most often and immediately come to mind as those who have interviewed the author. Here are the links to their interviews with Duane:
You can purchase the book on Amazon here: