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More Important Than People

In The Beautiful Ones, Prince writes that, as an adolescent, he visualized, dreamed, and stared at the furniture until he saw faces--faces talking to one another--and, as weird as it might sound, I can identify with it. I used to stare deeply into patterns in the wood and marble in our family homes--in search of faces. Sort of like what people do with clouds...which I didn't do much at all. It was always furniture in the house.

In this photo, Prince's mother sits near a console record player. I imagine he turned to it to listen to the music that was in his parents' life--long before he could buy his own albums.

We had a similar console. I remember my mother's albums being the first music I pulled from the sleeves and listened to when I was alone in the house: the Stones, Doobie Brothers, Billy Joel, Elton John, the Commodores...that era.

There was a cardboard box filled with 45s from the 60s. It was the first time I could play songs over and over again. My Girl was in there. Stop in the Name of Love. The Twist.

So, when Prince says he turned to music, that makes sense--that seems to be part of the right of passage of adolescence. But, for me, it wasn't ever more important than people...I never connected with music that deeply.

For me, it was drawing.


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