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Jaijai, what a wonderful mission you've undertaken to create such a place for artistic minds to meet and share their hearts. A place to renew faded determinations, and revive lessened momentums. A place to display our wares and reconfirm to one another that we actually are on the right track.

I commend you, Jaijai, for caring so much that you created this castle of the heart for all of us. I want to share my praise for all of the new friends as well as old friends that I've met and will meet here in our castle. Here we can garnish the where-with-all, the strength, the conviction, and the selflessness through our symbiosis, to share our gift to the world with an unbiased agenda.

My mentor, Daisaku Ikeda says of art: "A beautiful flower delights and refreshes the hearts of all people equally, no matter what soil it grows in. That is the power of beauty. The same is true of great art. It is this spirit that the German poet Heinrich Heine sang of when he wrote that once the peapod bursts open, the sugar peas inside are for everyone to enjoy."

Let's be audacious, my friends!

Buster Williams


Earma Thompson On Piano Jazz

She was a mainstay on the Chicago jazz scene for over 50 years before releasing an album as a bandleader herself. On this 2005 episode of Piano Jazz, the pianist performs tracks off Just In Time.

Jane Bunnett And Maqueque: The New Queens of Afro-Cuban Jazz

Canadian saxophonist and flutist Jane Bunnett has dedicated her life to Cuban music. Her latest project is Maqueque, an all-female band of young Cuban artists blending folkloric grooves and jazz.

Songs We Love: Terence Blanchard, 'Dear Jimi (Feat. The E-Collective)'

Blanchard's new record LIVE focuses on black art and black lives. For this Jimi Hendrix homage, he puts down the trumpet and pitch-bends the mournful melody on synth.

Watch Jordan Rakei Perform 'Eye To Eye' Live In The Studio

A rare talent emerging from London's current nexus of jazz, hip-hop, and electronic musicians, the soul singer performs his emotive new track.

First Listen: Orquesta Akokán, 'Orquesta Akokán'

A new album, recorded in a legendary Cuban recording studio, pays meticulous homage to the country's musical history and identity.

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April 22nd, 2017 - One Year & One Day.

‘Hello, how are you?’

‘I’m fine cause I know that the Lord is coming soon.

Coming, coming soon.’

This call has been on our machine since, 1984 - albeit, in reverse. It heralds the end of long-play side one of, Purple Rain. The words are only revealed when the backwards-tape effected audio of, The Artist Forever’s voice is decoded. Curiously so, the untitled/uncredited audio art is heard with storm and rain sounds, as ‘outro' to the characteristically scandalous, Darling Nikki. Yet, the printed lyrics at the bottom, as included in the inner sleeve’s graphic declares the translation into English: another realization of the mind of Prince.

Sometimes the world’s a storm

But one day soon the storm will pass

& all will be bright and peaceful

No more tears or pain

If u believe look 2 the dawn and

fearlessly bathe in the…

Purple Rain

Dearly Beloved, peace to you and yours and; glad we made it - through this thing called... The Rest Of Our Lives. True, I’d like to be more glad… Nevertheless, let me take you back to the summer of 1984. Former B-list actor, former California Governor, then U.S. President Ronald Reagan was on his merry way to a landslide re-election victory. Campaign slogan slinging that the epoch was, “Morning In America.” (Hmp!) I recall reading a review of, Purple Rain from that time. The writer (who’s name I couldn’t begin to remember,) appeared puzzled enough to ask, “Just what is purple rain?” If I were to give the benefit of the doubt… I’d say maybe, that by posing such a question, the writer was playing devil’s advocate; and prodding those interested to dig a little deeper.

I myself cannot think of a time when I didn’t consider what Prince was wailing about to be, nuclear annihilation and its aftermath. Weren’t we all…? (That is, when we weren’t all partying… like - as if we knew what - the year of, 1999 would in reality, be.)

“Ladies and gentlemen, I’ve just outlawed Russia. The bombing will begin in five minutes.” - Pres. Reagan joking with the press corp… with a live mic.

Seemed pretty obvious to me since “purple” enters the Prince lexicon via, 1999. Messengers of the apocalypse run rampant throughout classic recordings from the late 1960’s on, particularly in, Pop i.e. youth driven music. Hendrix introduces the phrase, “a change of climate” in 1968 and refers to, “the methane seas.” Not long after then, Bob Marley was, “pleading with humanity.” It seems as if prophetic visions are part of the package when one discovers themselves as one molded into the ancient archetype of, ‘Man With A Guitar.’ Now I’m generally not one to make an issue out of gender… Nevertheless, there does seem to be a pattern here - on earth. All the way back to, great King David - who, by the way like Prince, was reportedly also fond of dancing in the temple, in his loin cloth.

Or, was it all an act?

In my travels, I have come to the conclusion that most people don’t really have an inkling of what it is like to be a true artist. This notion goes for the artists as well! What it is to actually live life through one’s own imagination… To find out what it really means to be an artist… great or un-known. This experience is discovered along the way. 

P.s. You youngunzz out der can take a lesson from all this: Don't make any hard and fast commitments, until you really know how you feel; it's often not what you feel.

Much more along the way, as the criminal investigation is on-going. I know my grieving must now cease - as I go on living, just (not) the same.

Comments below reveal more, as shall time… 

Peace & Purple,


Maison Musique, New Orleans

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Comment by Esquizito on April 24, 2017 at 8:11pm

"Why do we crucify ourselves?" - Tori Amos

Comment by Esquizito on April 24, 2017 at 8:08pm

HE crucified himself.

Gisele and I agreed... that Prince seemed to have a messianic complex. Little did I know of such manifestations at the age of 20. Sister made me her guest and I have not viewed, Purple Rain in full since that afternoon of my Berklee years. I also recall my impression of his acting at that time, "He can't deliver a line to save his life."

What was then, as now, undeniable were the performance scenes. The film did not impact me to the point where I sought out, The Revolution live. Or the NPG, or 3rd Eye Girl; indeed, I never saw Prince live in performance. Cousin 'Lona didn't take me up on my offer to celebrate our 50th Birthdays on the floor of the Superdome - in 2013 when he headlined the Essence Festival, that year. She would've had to get a flight to New Orleans... I didn't have the courage to go stag. (Who knows what could have happened...) It was reported that Prince entered the stage on rollerblades, which I presume were a more enjoyable option to high-heels - it has been noted that heels allowed Prince to gain an appearance of height while sharing the stage with his musicians. The likes of which, the leggy Shelia E.; whom Prince preferred to have on stage in as little clothing as possible/passible.

Of course, it never occurred to me that I would not have another opportunity to rock out live with him. I was thoroughly convinced that, at some point, he would work Jazzfest. (I wasn't aware that he didn't play outdoor festivals too often.) However, I noted in the same review of the Essence show that it was reported that Prince had undergone hip replacement surgery in 2010, at the age of 50. I thought to myself, "Hmp... catching up with him too."

Keep on living!

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