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Thread started 11/25/19 5:49pm

Hamad

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Question For Orgers Who Didn’t Get Into “Rainbow Children”

I was listening to a peach & black podcast review last week and one of the speakers said that the lyrics created a disconnect between him & the music (I’m paraphrasing). I’m not oblivious about the big heated discussions that took place here when it was released, however my question is, have you guys revisited the album again recently? And if so does the stance still remain the same(or worse lol) or have your views changed?

I ask this, because I find myself going back to certain albums I didn’t care for in the past (Chaos & Disorder/New Power Soul) but find myself completely enthralled by them now.
Every saint has a past, and every sinner has a future...

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Reply #1 posted 11/25/19 6:38pm

lurker316

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I have always loved that album. I understand people who don't like the preachy lyrics, but I am like Captain from the Peach & Black podcast -- I don't listen to lyrics or think about what they mean. I like the music.



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Reply #2 posted 11/25/19 6:45pm

Hamad

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I agree! I never felt one way or the other about the lyrical content, as I feel like he made the album for himself. It’s one of my fave albums from him, one the strongest/most focused production values. And it resurrected my love for the fender Rhodes, not mention his guitar playing was also monstrous in there smile
Every saint has a past, and every sinner has a future...

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Reply #3 posted 11/25/19 7:46pm

rdhull

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Itshos 4th turning point classic

c'mon baby, where's ya guts?
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Reply #4 posted 11/25/19 8:06pm

TrivialPursuit

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Hamad said:

I was listening to a peach & black podcast review last week and one of the speakers said that the lyrics created a disconnect between him & the music (I’m paraphrasing). I’m not oblivious about the big heated discussions that took place here when it was released, however my question is, have you guys revisited the album again recently? And if so does the stance still remain the same(or worse lol) or have your views changed? I ask this, because I find myself going back to certain albums I didn’t care for in the past (Chaos & Disorder/New Power Soul) but find myself completely enthralled by them now.


Good thread idea.

I was one of the dissenters when TRC came out. I abhorred it. The preaching and his JW dogma interlaced with songs about - well there weren't songs about much else. There's a telling moment when he's pictured on the spine of the album, virtually hiding around a corner from everyone as they listen to the record. He certainly knew beforehand that this was going to cause waves in the community. Not that it deterred him from doing it, but he knew.

The production is excellent. Musically, it's unlike anything we've heard him produce to that point. And frankly, not much after it either. Nothing ever sounded like that. I fully appreciated the musicality of it. Even revisiting it, I enjoy the music. Some parts are more inspired than others. But I still cannot get into the lyrics. They still irritate me. It's still that time in Prince's life where he knew better than everyone, and he wasn't afraid to tell you how wrong you were about God or whatever. That isn't the Prince I knew. So in some ways, it's a duality. It's just how creative, nuanced, and interesting Prince could truly make his music while also being the exact opposite of everything he'd always been, believed in, and stood for to that point. No, I couldn't just enjoy the music. The lyrics were too strong, potent, and cataclysmic to ignore.

In general, I still abhor it for those reasons.

This experience will cover courtship, sex, commitment, fetishes, loneliness, vindication, love, and hate.
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Reply #5 posted 11/25/19 8:41pm

Hamad

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^^^

Thank you! So insightful smile So, I dated somebody in the past who went to one one of those “Celebration” events in paisley park around the release of that album, I’m not sure whether if this true or not, but supposedly at one point he (Prince) grouped the audience in two: believers & non believers, why? I honestly can’t recall. My ex was an antagonist and he didn’t believe in any form of organized religion & was appalled at the preaching that took place prior to that grouping, needless to say he stuck around till the end but that was it for him as a fan. Prince has always been a “preachy” individual, he conveyed it in waves but it has always been part of his artistry for better or worse (and even his interaction with the press/fellow artists) I feel like it was part of the language he communicated through most of his career, so I definitely understand the disdain for it, but for that same reason, I probably knew how to mentally block it & not let it effect me in any way. I just didn’t get it because most of it seemed cryptic for me & full of contradictions, I guess my ignorance made the emotional factor toward his words null in a way, if I’m making any sense lol
Every saint has a past, and every sinner has a future...

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Reply #6 posted 11/25/19 8:41pm

kewlschool

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Musically great. Lyrically sexiest to cringe worthy. Prince's

best overall album from 2000 onward.

99.9% of everything I say is strictly for my own entertainment
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Reply #7 posted 11/25/19 9:17pm

Moonbeam

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The "us vs them" dichotomy is a bit off-putting, but it doesn't really do it for me musically either aside from a few tracks. I don't think Prince's dabblings into jazz/fusion have ever been that successful.

Feel free to join in the Prince Album Poll 2018! Let'a celebrate his legacy by counting down the most beloved Prince albums, as decided by you!
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Reply #8 posted 11/25/19 11:45pm

BlueShakooo

I loved Rainbow Children from the start.

The music was so good, that I didn't care about the lyrics.

A friend of mine (who's a Prince-Fan, too) told me lately, that people build cathedrals when they become religious, and Rainbow Children is Prince's cathedral.

I like that.

Apart from that:

I hated his preaching on Rave2000 (Purple Rain).

And turning The Cross into The Christ (that Essence-Award performance is on of the very few of his that I don't like).

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Reply #9 posted 11/26/19 12:07am

luv4u

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The only thing I could not get into, and yeah I have posted it in the past too, the 'darth vader' voice.

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Reply #10 posted 11/26/19 2:09am

dustoff

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"Rainbow Children" is one of my favorite of Prince's later albums -- maybe because I don't pay attention tot he lyrics all that closely.

And it's easy enough to pretend that something like "1+1+1=3" is about a three-way, instead of the holy trinity -- wasn't Prince always singing about sex and religion at the same time, anyway? The idea that Prince -- the guy behind "Purple Rain" and "The Cross" -- was getting "too preachy" never seemed quite on target to me.

He was getting wackier, though, and the JW just seemed to provide material to feed some of his worst impulses. Not just the religious stuff, but also the political.

It's not easy for me to interpret something like "Family Name" -- I'm not sure what he's getting at with the whole "Mr. Perlman / Rosenbloom / Goldstruck" bit, and I'm not sure I want to. It's too bad, because from a musical point of view "Rainbow Children" is solid, often sublime.

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Reply #11 posted 11/26/19 2:17am

jaawwnn

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It's a great album, I appreciate that he really meant the lyrics, at their best they're thoughtprovoking even if they're preachy. Sure he was always preachy, he literally has a song called God. On the Rainbow Children the lyrics are kind of specific where he was quite vague in the past, I think some people might have been uncomfortable being confronted with them, and I can't blame them either.

There's been some criticism of the music being phony jazz, which is probably kind of true, but I still enjoy it since he mixes it with enough other stuff to keep it inspired. I always like to hear him stretching himself musically and he really does seem to be doing that on this album. The 'Darth Vader' voice criticism i've never gotten, it's just a variation on the PFunk thing isn't it? Go listen to Maggot Brain.


[Edited 11/26/19 2:17am]

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Reply #12 posted 11/26/19 2:22am

milesb

Always loved it. Always will. Was never really into Price for his lyrics, so they never bothered me. It's the musical journey he takes you on that floats my boat. And on this album he certainly takes you on a journey. A curious beast actually I think. Compared to the rest of his back catalogue. There's a whole heap of smooth jazz, mixed with some funk and some pop. It just flows nicely I think. A proper album to listen too, start to finish.

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Reply #13 posted 11/26/19 2:48am

dodger

My views have never changed on it.

I don't like the 'darth vadar' narration, the long unskippable intro before Family Name, some of the lyrics but I respect it as a work of art and it's possibly, dare I say; a MASTERPIECE.

.

I love the production and music but clearly he was torn with his new views at the time. One minute he's singing about 'wet circles round the toy while you bring yourself to joy' and the next he sounds ridiculous singing 'we don't give a duck what you got on' and 'shake your pants'

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Reply #14 posted 11/26/19 4:52am

EmmaMcG

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I like some of the songs from it because they sound good. I don't pay attention to any lyrics where he's babbling on about God or any of that nonsense. 1+1+1=3 could have been about his hobby of clubbing seals and murdering children and I'd still listen to it because I like how it sounds.
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Reply #15 posted 11/26/19 9:02am

emesem

Views have not changed. Its still most negative and hateful thing that Prince ever put out. Sorry I havent gotten over the theocratic fascism, the misogyny, the anti-semitism or the dog whistle racism.

Shame as the last half of it has some of Princes best music but its just lipstick on a cold, dark heart.

[Edited 11/26/19 9:03am]

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Reply #16 posted 11/26/19 9:11am

dustoff

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emesem said:

Views have not changed. Its still most negative and hateful thing that Prince ever put out. Sorry I havent gotten over the theocratic fascism, the misogyny, the anti-semitism or the dog whistle racism.

Shame as the last half of it has some of Princes best music but its just lipstick on a cold, dark heart.


Your post makes me think I should just sit down and read the lyrics, which I've always avoided doing -- I re-read my last comment and obviously I'm hedging on something I shouldn't, or don't know enough about.

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Reply #17 posted 11/26/19 9:17am

AZStreet

milesb said:

Always loved it. Always will. Was never really into Price for his lyrics, so they never bothered me. It's the musical journey he takes you on that floats my boat. And on this album he certainly takes you on a journey. A curious beast actually I think. Compared to the rest of his back catalogue. There's a whole heap of smooth jazz, mixed with some funk and some pop. It just flows nicely I think. A proper album to listen too, start to finish.

My thoughts exactly.

But if I were to include a top 5 of lyrics by him (Love We Make at the top), Last December would be in there. It's one of my fav inspirational songs by him.

I love TRC. Sonically, it is one of his best. I always gravitate to anything funky/jazz he puts out. The way I beavis butthead nod when Everlasting Now or 1113 comes on in my car lol ....

I kiiiiinda liked it when it came out, but I found a new appreciation for it when Blackwell passed away...as he is my 2nd fav P drummer after Sheila.

"You know, this is funky but I wish he'd play like he used to, old scragglyhead son of a...*smack* OOH!"
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Reply #18 posted 11/26/19 9:20am

steakfinger

The Rainbow Children still sucks donkey balls lyrically. 100% donkey balls, all day and all night. Musically it's amazing and the performance are really great except the distorted guitar stuff. Burying it under wah-wah and ring modulator isn't enough to disguise how utterly poopy the distorted lead work is. Everything else is beyond amazing. I realize it's about personal taste, but as a guitar player and fan of Prince's guitar playing I'm baffled as to why it's so dank (in the bad way), on that record. I like the record and I listen to it, but the lead guitar playing hasn't improved and lyrically it's gotten worse.

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Reply #19 posted 11/26/19 9:42am

purplethunder3
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The biggest turn off for me was the "Darth Vader" voice... razz But the music is sublime.

"Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything." --Plato
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Reply #20 posted 11/26/19 9:51am

BalladofPeterP
arker

I like Ranbow Children quite a bit. I really appreciated his attempt to do something different from what anyone else was doing but then again that's what I have always loved about Prince.

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Reply #21 posted 11/26/19 10:45am

Rev

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Being a Prince fan for four decades, you have to give him a lot of artistic room. Most of the time it's extralovable or Mayte being a teenager...etc.

For some reason I was not in the space for this album. I'm still not for the religious crap.

I too went back and listened to the album after he's passed and have found a nice playlist from it and enjoy the music immensly.

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Reply #22 posted 11/26/19 11:25am

ian

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I always enjoyed the record, but I guess I've learned how to mentally filter out Prince's most happy-clappy come-to-Jebus moments and just try to enjoy the music as much as possible.

It's a shame though with The Rainbow Children in particular because he was really trying hard to push into new areas musically and it all seemed so fresh and different for him.... but lyrically it was utter garbage. He was at the peak of his most annoyingly pious and knowitall phase during that time. Now it just makes me sad to think how much religion screwed up his art.

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Reply #23 posted 11/26/19 12:45pm

JoeyCococo

I think I agree with many here. He was highly opinionated on this album but being a long timer, I know his views diluted over time. The P of 2002 Rainbow waws not the same as the 2016 P.

THis album was at the height of his JW indocternation. An artist of his calibre was on fire when inspired and, like it or not, he was inspired here. The album is the one I've gone back to the most b/c of the sheer musicality. I was surpried to learn he did a lot of it on his own. It sounds like a band.

The sound is also fantastic. I think someone named Joe Lepinski engineered it and I'd love to hear his thoughts. Michael Dean - pls find him!

The Last December is one of this little known gems that I think will one day get a lot of attention. I feel if the estate starts to license his music, this (and Goodbye and many others) will find a huge audience and injiect a lot of interest in his work.

Anyway, love it...I don't pay too much attention to all of the lyrics.

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Reply #24 posted 11/26/19 1:06pm

Genesia

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I have tried so hard with this album. But as others have noted, the dogma, the anti-Semitism, the theocratic order – it is a big, tough pill to swallow. I am a writer by trade - so ignoring lyrics is just not in my wheelhouse.

And yet, the music is so beautiful in so many places. So in iTunes, I have Everywhere, The Sensual Everafter, The Everlasting Now, and Last December. I just let the rest go. shrug

We don’t mourn artists because we knew them. We mourn them because they helped us know ourselves.
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Reply #25 posted 11/26/19 1:14pm

JoeyCococo

Genesia said:

I have tried so hard with this album. But as others have noted, the dogma, the anti-Semitism, the theocratic order – it is a big, tough pill to swallow. I am a writer by trade - so ignoring lyrics is just not in my wheelhouse.

And yet, the music is so beautiful in so many places. So in iTunes, I have Everywhere, The Sensual Everafter, The Everlasting Now, and Last December. I just let the rest go. shrug

Can you elaborate a bit on what the anti-semitism parts are?

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Reply #26 posted 11/26/19 1:27pm

jtfolden

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emesem said:

Views have not changed. Its still most negative and hateful thing that Prince ever put out. Sorry I havent gotten over the theocratic fascism, the misogyny, the anti-semitism or the dog whistle racism.

Shame as the last half of it has some of Princes best music but its just lipstick on a cold, dark heart.

[Edited 11/26/19 9:03am]



^^^THS^^^ Musically it sounded good but I will never be ok with the lyrics or the know-it-all, judgmenetal us vs them mindet of the era. The Darth Vader voice is just the rotten cherry on the toxic frosting. That we went from "Love is god, god is love" to this dreck is mind-boggling disappointing.

[Edited 11/26/19 13:28pm]

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Reply #27 posted 11/26/19 1:34pm

Genesia

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JoeyCococo said:

Genesia said:

I have tried so hard with this album. But as others have noted, the dogma, the anti-Semitism, the theocratic order – it is a big, tough pill to swallow. I am a writer by trade - so ignoring lyrics is just not in my wheelhouse.

And yet, the music is so beautiful in so many places. So in iTunes, I have Everywhere, The Sensual Everafter, The Everlasting Now, and Last December. I just let the rest go. shrug

Can you elaborate a bit on what the anti-semitism parts are?

In Family Name, he seems to be casting the slave trade (with its obliteration of African culture in the form of renaming slaves) at the feet of people with stereotypically Jewish names. Of course, most of those stereotypically Jewish names aren't original Family Names, either.

Perhaps his point was that for some people, changing their names was a choice rather than coercion (of something even more malevolent). But Jews had their names changed forcibly or as a result of persecution, as well.

At best, it was an odd artistic choice. At worst … well, I already said what I thought the worst was.

We don’t mourn artists because we knew them. We mourn them because they helped us know ourselves.
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Reply #28 posted 11/26/19 1:38pm

Mintchip

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I was 20 when it came out, and I thought the lyrics were strange, but not overly bothersome, and I loved the music.

.

Now I'm 40, and I'm more struck by how awful the lyric are, especially with regards to women. It might be scripture, but the constant need for women to obey the decisions of their husband, called "The Wise One", I mean. Gross.

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Reply #29 posted 11/26/19 1:44pm

emesem

JoeyCococo said:

Genesia said:

I have tried so hard with this album. But as others have noted, the dogma, the anti-Semitism, the theocratic order – it is a big, tough pill to swallow. I am a writer by trade - so ignoring lyrics is just not in my wheelhouse.

And yet, the music is so beautiful in so many places. So in iTunes, I have Everywhere, The Sensual Everafter, The Everlasting Now, and Last December. I just let the rest go. shrug

Can you elaborate a bit on what the anti-semitism parts are?

This line contains a plethora of awfulness:

"Holocaust aside, many lived and died
But when all truth is told, would you rather be dead or be sold?
Sold to the one who can now mate the displaced bloodline
With the white jail bait..."

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