Monday, August 19, 2013

I Would Die 4 U: Why Prince Became an Icon


After more than 30 years in the music business, Prince continues to amaze us. He continues to churn out songs and tours frequently.  He even came to my hometown two years ago!  When he decided to join Twitter last week, many fans (including myself) were shocked because he is VERY anti-Internet (good luck looking for a Prince video on YouTube).

Journalist and pop culture critic Toure's latest book, I Would Die 4 U: Why Prince Became An Icon (named after the song that was in Purple Rain) examines Prince's life and how it reflects in his songs.  And is able to do all of this in less than 200 pages.

Toure breaks down Prince's songs into three categories: autobiographical, sexual (duh) and spiritual.  Some of his songs do overlap in these categories, in which Toure does give detailed analysis through out the book

This book is also sprinkled with autobiographical information and has interviews with former band members, superfans (such as Questlove) and others in the music industry.  

This book reads like an academic book (it is based off of a series of lectures Toure did about Prince), but it's not boggled down and I was able to read it fairly quickly.  And as I mentioned before, the book is not long, clocking in at less than 200 pages.  I would recommend this book to ultimate Prince fans and those, like me, who enjoy music history.

Bonus: Here is a video which Toure, Questlove, writer Danyel Smith and music executive Alan Leeds discuss Prince.  This event was held when the book was first released and will give you a feel of what the book is like. It's over an hour long, but it's worth it.

Received ARC from Netgalley and Atria Books, the publisher of the book.  Opinions are my own.

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