The Revolution in Madison, WI. Here are some of my impressions from the show [May 12, 2017]. It was indeed a beautiful night!
*The spacing on the stage left open the spot in the center where Prince always stood. Reminds me of the missing man formation that the Air Force and Navy pilots display when one of the members of their squadron has died in battle. Well-played!
*Brown Mark does an excellent job of being the band leader. It’s interesting how never hearing from him on stage decades ago, that he now seems at ease doing the audience engagement more than the other members. His energy and bass playing are top level. I noticed that he was cutting some of the Prince moves with the bass with the movement, spinning and other physical histrionics. However, that bass continued to thump without pause.
*Wendy – I am simply amazed at her shredding [that] night. She was hitting Prince licks in, say, like “Purple Rain,” to where it was indistinguishable from his playing. Her guitar playing is at a master class level. She deserves credit for that, although it is not far-fetched to think that her being a woman might affect overall perception of how great she was. And her performance of “Sometimes It Snows in April” was heartwarming and heartbreaking at the same time. She precluded the performance by talking about how devastated they were when they heard he had passed. The love that she has for Prince is palpable, her voice often breaking up as she discussed losing him. And then the wonderful sung- from- the- heart rendition of “April” was simply beautiful.
*The Band – They honor Prince in such a genuine and authentic way. They sounded absolutely great. I saw Prince and The Revolution in January 1985 on the Purple Rain tour and this was 32 years later and the sound took me back – they sounded just as awesome, just without Prince. These are fully-formed professional musicians and everything they did reminded us why Prince dealt with them in the first place – because they are superbly talented musicians. I truly hope that from this tour, that they go to the studio and create some original work. Also, a very adequate addition to the ensemble is the lead singer of Mint Condition, Stokely Williams did a very good job of singing lead vocals on songs such as “1999,” “Kiss,” etc. He didn’t try to do too much, he stayed in the pocket and made it work. Overall, the band hit the right note with me in several ways! I love what they are doing!
*The Crowd – The Barrymore Theater is a small venue that seats 971. Most of the seats were filled, not all, but the crowd was a lively one. We were on our feet dancing for most of the night and they knew the music. The audience enthusiasm was amazing! I took a 2hr40 minute drive from Chicago to Madison for this show, and I gotta say that Madison knows how to party. I met people from Milwaukee and other cities in Wisconsin as well, and the energy was great!
*My Catharsis – as Prince Fam, we are all dealing with his demise in our own ways, individually and collectively. We are all still in shock and heartbroken about his demise, yet I keep finding inspiration from these gatherings, in the physical or on the Internet. Prince means something to each of us in an individual way that often is not captured by words. However, to see people dance and sing along with his original band bolsters my spirit and makes me more thankful that my life arc intersected the life arc of one Prince Rogers Nelson. That guy was a comet that blazed through this realm, yet somehow despite all that I feel and that we feel collectively, I keep asking reminding myself, “You’re fortunate to have witnessed his greatness!” Long Live The P! #PurpleMusic4Ever #Love4OneAnother
© 2017 Gee Malone