May 7 2023
Prince, dub, reduction, JD Twitch, Arthur Russell, Terry Riley, Éliane Radigue, Charles Curtis, unreleased songs, Timbaland, Dido, caroline, Cop City, Ariana Reines, Morgan Bassichis, and much more
Wrongtom posted a demo of Prince’s “Alphabet Street” dub on Twitter and it got me to thinking about reduction. “Prince Dub” is not an official category, and there is not even a bootleg version of a Prince dub album (unless I missed it). Prince reduced himself for “Kiss” and “Sign o’ The Times” and “Housequake” and went skeletal on some of the 12-inch mixes but his love of players and playing meant that he always larded his band with chopsy folks who liked to fill up space. (The joy of live music comes through more clearly in video, as seen in the many Prince clips circulating on TikTok.) Some Prince scholar must know where the dubbed out Prince is stashed. I want to hear Prince isolating his own tracks and sending them through the wash that conceals and illuminates and ages and enhances: echo. A Piano and A Microphone is a version of this idea, doing the most with the least and letting a dirty recording color the scene.