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Thread started 05/22/20 1:03am

MattyJam

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Are there any songs which Prince stuggled with live (vocally)?

Title is pretty self-explanatory.

What do you think?

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Reply #1 posted 05/22/20 3:44am

donnyenglish

Breakdown

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Reply #2 posted 05/22/20 4:46am

SquirrelMeat76

I remember I Wanna Be Your Lover from the Lovesexy tour didn't sound great. He used the falsetto on those first 2 records, and I guess it's hard to get much power in a live setting.

Kiss as well never came across great live for me

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Reply #3 posted 05/22/20 5:04am

JorisE73

I've only seen him struggle once in '98 in the Netherlands when he had a cold and coughed and sneezed throughout the show and lost his voice for the high squeel in If I Was Your Girlfriend and then kept tapping his chest.

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Reply #4 posted 05/22/20 6:49am

soladeo1

When he was fully healthy, which was most of the time on tour, NOTHING was hard for him vocally. Go find a random Controversy Era show and listen to Do Me, Baby...or a random Purple Rain Show and listen to God or The Beautiful Ones. Even here is pushes his vocals effortlessly...even beyond the studio versions. Guy was remarkable.
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Reply #5 posted 05/22/20 10:06am

Farfunknugin

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Enter Sandman?

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Reply #6 posted 05/22/20 11:37am

lavendardrumma
chine

The Beautiful Ones. Not that he couldn't sing it, but you kind of get the sense he was being cautious. But when you have Misty on your piano, and it's a tv appearance, and you're still holding back, it's almost like you should just skip the song entirely.

He struggled with the Sly Stone covers. No idea why.

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Reply #7 posted 05/22/20 12:43pm

antonb

I have listened to tons of live bootlegs, only really noticed him struggling when he was ill. Like the more recent soundboard of the 3rd eye girl show , Louisville I think, when he had a cold / sore throat. But he still performed for 2 hours! His last time he did shows in the UK , I went to a couple, his voice was the highlight for me. He still sounded great.

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Reply #8 posted 05/22/20 12:51pm

IstenSzek

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there are a very few songs that he never quite got right in a live setting.

one that comes to mind is "dolphin", where he always sounds like he's
out of breath or simply can't really get to the end of the lines.

not that he's struggling with the vocals ability but just with phrasing,
at least that what it sounds like to me.

"dolphin" is one of my top 5 prince songs so i'm always a bit let down
by the live versions since musically they are often pretty amazing but
vocally they never excite me.

and true love lives on lollipops and crisps
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Reply #9 posted 05/22/20 12:57pm

AvocadosMax

Breakdown
Kiss
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Reply #10 posted 05/22/20 1:54pm

TrivialPursuit

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SquirrelMeat76 said:

I remember I Wanna Be Your Lover from the Lovesexy tour didn't sound great. He used the falsetto on those first 2 records, and I guess it's hard to get much power in a live setting.

Kiss as well never came across great live for me


I agree with this. His falsetto is amazing on tape. But live, sometimes it just doesn't translate well. There are areas of a falsetto for anyone that land well, while others don't. Prince is in that mix. "Kiss" is a weird song in general, and never translates well live (in any regard), unless it's heavily rearranged. Even Prince said, "Maybe 'Kiss' will sound right one day." (I think that was about "Kiss," wasn't it?)

I remember the Rave Un2 The Year 2000 version of "Kiss." It just was like - stop. I'd rather skip the song. The arrangement was funky, but the vocals - nope.

I think he's done "I Wanna Be Your Lover" in his regular voice and falsetto at different times. I believe it sounds better w/ his regular voice. (That's a thread waiting to happen - what song sounds better in his regular voice than his falsetto.)

In quiet moments in a show, the falsetto works. But when you're trying to belt a song like "I Wanna Be Your Lover," etc., it never translates well.

Just when U think U've got more than enough, that's when it all up and flies away.
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Reply #11 posted 05/22/20 11:35pm

thebanishedone

The Most Beautiful Girl In The World ,The Beautiful Ones
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Reply #12 posted 05/23/20 7:26am

SantanaMaitrey
a

TrivialPursuit said:



SquirrelMeat76 said:


I remember I Wanna Be Your Lover from the Lovesexy tour didn't sound great. He used the falsetto on those first 2 records, and I guess it's hard to get much power in a live setting.


Kiss as well never came across great live for me




I agree with this. His falsetto is amazing on tape. But live, sometimes it just doesn't translate well. There are areas of a falsetto for anyone that land well, while others don't. Prince is in that mix. "Kiss" is a weird song in general, and never translates well live (in any regard), unless it's heavily rearranged. Even Prince said, "Maybe 'Kiss' will sound right one day." (I think that was about "Kiss," wasn't it?)

I remember the Rave Un2 The Year 2000 version of "Kiss." It just was like - stop. I'd rather skip the song. The arrangement was funky, but the vocals - nope.

I think he's done "I Wanna Be Your Lover" in his regular voice and falsetto at different times. I believe it sounds better w/ his regular voice. (That's a thread waiting to happen - what song sounds better in his regular voice than his falsetto.)

In quiet moments in a show, the falsetto works. But when you're trying to belt a song like "I Wanna Be Your Lover," etc., it never translates well.


No, that comment was about When Doves Cry in an interview with Serge Simonart in Mojo magazine in february 1997. He goes on to say: "Sometimes I get a better idea for a song, but it's already recorded. Live versions can be radically different."
And it's interesting to note that he kept playing Kiss, but WDC was never part of the set list in his later tours, except as part of the sampler set.
[Edited 5/23/20 7:28am]
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Reply #13 posted 05/23/20 11:58am

dodger

TrivialPursuit said:



SquirrelMeat76 said:


I remember I Wanna Be Your Lover from the Lovesexy tour didn't sound great. He used the falsetto on those first 2 records, and I guess it's hard to get much power in a live setting.


Kiss as well never came across great live for me




I agree with this. His falsetto is amazing on tape. But live, sometimes it just doesn't translate well. There are areas of a falsetto for anyone that land well, while others don't. Prince is in that mix. "Kiss" is a weird song in general, and never translates well live (in any regard), unless it's heavily rearranged. Even Prince said, "Maybe 'Kiss' will sound right one day." (I think that was about "Kiss," wasn't it?)

I remember the Rave Un2 The Year 2000 version of "Kiss." It just was like - stop. I'd rather skip the song. The arrangement was funky, but the vocals - nope.

I think he's done "I Wanna Be Your Lover" in his regular voice and falsetto at different times. I believe it sounds better w/ his regular voice. (That's a thread waiting to happen - what song sounds better in his regular voice than his falsetto.)

In quiet moments in a show, the falsetto works. But when you're trying to belt a song like "I Wanna Be Your Lover," etc., it never translates well.



.
My favourite live version of Kiss is from The Arsenio Hall show. His falsetto sounds perfect and you have to love the scream before he throws the mic stand
[Edited 5/23/20 12:00pm]
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Reply #14 posted 05/23/20 1:49pm

lavendardrumma
chine

SantanaMaitreya said:

And it's interesting to note that he kept playing Kiss


Yeah but that comment sounds like it could have been about Kiss anyway, because he kept playing it with tweaks to the tempo, and there are live versions where the guitar trips up and his vocals are thrown off then one or the other catches up. He'd also started singing the "Kiss" before the break down in a lower register or switching up when he used falsetto.

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Reply #15 posted 05/24/20 7:32am

PurpleColossus

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soladeo1 said:

When he was fully healthy, which was most of the time on tour, NOTHING was hard for him vocally. Go find a random Controversy Era show and listen to Do Me, Baby...or a random Purple Rain Show and listen to God or The Beautiful Ones. Even here is pushes his vocals effortlessly...even beyond the studio versions. Guy was remarkable.

I agree with this... While it can be argued that some performances were better than others, I don't think he struggled with any live vocals when he was 100%.

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Reply #16 posted 05/24/20 8:31am

callimnate

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He was never able to replicate The Beautiful Ones live.
But that could just be because the studio version was a one off musical masterpiece.
love
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