Tag Archives: Paisley Park petition

Opinion:Why Are The #Prince Accomplishments Not Acknowledged?

Prince in universe

It is becoming increasingly clear that the accomplishments of Prince are being grossly overlooked or worse, ignored by those in the position of providing him with the recognition he deserves.


Prince at Montreux

An example of this is, the fact that, despite the fact he has written so many songs over time, (not just Purple Rain), he has not been inducted into the Songwriter’s Hall of Fame. Yet,  Jay-Z , who does not have half the catalog of original, succesful and published songs compared to Prince, has been inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. Prince has 39 albums with his own original compositions, songs which contain beautiful and meaningful lyrics as well as music which is all composed by Prince. Yet, they ignore him as well as the petition which seeks to have him properly honored. https://www.change.org/p/the-songwriters-hall-of-fame-prince-is-music-induct-prince-into-the-songwriters-hall-of-fame

prince holding guitar 25But it is not just the Songwriters Hall of Fame, there are others, including Barack Obama, who, while president, had the opportunity to bestow the ‘Medal of Freedom’ to Prince, but failed to do so. Prince, by far merited the Medal of Freedom equally with persons such as Ellen Degeneres.  People point to “courage” but fail to note the courage it took for Prince to take a stand against the record industry and it’s treatment of artist. That was his livelihood, yet he not only had the courage to take a stand, he also won the fight! Also, he should have been granted the award based upon his philanthropy, activism, and generosity.  Most of his philanthropic actions were performed with the understanding that they would not be publicized. But, after his passing, when those activities were revealed, the amounts of his generosity remain unsurpassed. (You can find the list here: https://www.change.org/p/designate-prince-rogers-nelson-s-paisley-park-as-a-national-historic-landmark/u/17626949) Clearly, this warranted Prince being awarded the Medal of Freedom posthumously.

And then there is the Prince estate. First, it was Bremer, who as administrator for the estate, refused to even meet with the Minnesota Historical Society regarding their attempt to designate Paisley Park and his other properties as a Minnesota Historical sites. And, when contacted by parties who are seeking to make Paisley Park a National Historic Landmark, the response by one of the Bremer reps was: “We’re not marketing it as a Historical Landmark.” Excuse me? Marketing? Seriously? The audacity of that person to use the term “marketing” when approached as to preserving a legacy was not only outrageous, but also unconscionable. Suffice it to say, that, although no longer in charge of the Prince estate, Bremer remains currently embroiled and embattled as to some of the financial choices which were made  during their tenure, but the truth is, that, at no point, did they consider anything which would preserve the legacy of Prince, only that which would earn money.

Then there is Paisley Park, being managed by Graceland Holdings, who only seem to seek to profit from Prince’s legacy, but not to actually preserve Paisley Park.

paisley park 7

Paisley Park

Lastly, there are the heirs, who, instead of trying to bolster and preserve the legacy of their brother, appear to be attempting to create a legacy of their own, based solely upon their relationship to Prince via the music industry and/or covering Prince songs. And yet, they do not have the time to invest in even discussions with those attempting to preserve his legacy via lobbying ‘Kennedy Honors’, Songwriters Hall of Fame’ or those who are attempting to have Paisley Park and other sites  designated as historical landmarks, hence preserving one of his greatest legacies! They appear to only want to increase their personal bottom line and if they will obtain no money, then they have zero interest. We also now know that the alleged shady deals made during the Bremer tenure were, (if not directly), approved to move forward via lack of opposition.  Paisley Park, has always paid for itself, and can continue to do so, if indeed, there is the Prince new 2appropriate and qualified attention to detail and respect that Prince and his fans deserve. After all, Paisley Park is indeed within the hearts of his fans, and it is the fans of Prince who supported him throughout his career who actually paid for Paisley Park.

Yet of course, hats off and much respect to those who are actually attempting to preserve and protect the legacy of Prince Rogers Nelson who warrant mentions such as: PRNAlumni who are focusing on the continuation of Prince’s awesome charitable work;  @PurpleLegacy who continue to persist in their efforts to have Paisley Park designated as a National Historic Landmark; The Minnesota Historical Society, working to name Paisley Park as a Minnesota Historical site; the Prince watchdog group, PurpleOutcry.org, who work tirelessly to make certain that Prince’s legacy retains the respect it deserves,as well as protect that legacy; the Department of the Interior under the Obama administration who worked with Minnesota Historical society; and most of all to the fans of Prince, a really super-smart and loyal group of people who stand as gatekeepers to the memory and legacy of Prince.

So the question remains: Why are the accomplishments of Prince not acknowledged? The question itself is as perplexing as the lack of answers appear to be.

Prince at NPG festival 2011

Prince 2011 at NPG Festival

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Opinion: Joel Weinshanker Is Not A True Prince Fan



Recently, during a Paisley Park re-zoning of  Paisley Park hearing before the City Council of the city of Chanhassen, Joel Weinshanker, (owner and CEO of Graceland Holdings – the company tasked with presenting Paisley Park as a museum), said that he is a “fan” of Prince. He also said that he would neither touch nor change anything. Those comments ring hollow in the ears of true Prince fans, who refer to themselves as “fam” and not “fan“. (Prince himself was the impetus of that term, disliking the word ‘fan‘ and its origins, referred to all of his fans as “fam“.)

The reason his assertion rings hollow is based upon his actions. For, the results infer that he could not have ever have been a true Prince ‘fam‘ nor is he now. Otherwise he would not have limited the museum to becoming a musical circus act with Prince’s legacy placed within that sort of cage, allowing the essence of Prince to get lost in that circus. He clearly has no clue as to whom Prince really was and if the answer to a few questions produces a response of ‘no’, then he has not done his job with regards to the museum which is supposed to honor Prince.

Did he ever hear Prince speak? Anyone who has heard Prince speak would be well aware of his quiet dignity and would

Prince onstage at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards

Prince onstage at the 42nd NAACP Image Awards 

never associate him with ostentatious displays  and would be certain that everything within the museum possessed that same, quiet dignity.

prince-playing-guitar-2Did he ever see Prince perform? If so – he would never have allowed for the sound stage upon which he performed in Paisley Park to be removed to become a “Purple Rain” room. Albeit that is the song via which Prince is most known by all – his performances there and worldwide were spectacular. And even though it is known that he would not be performing again on that stage, those who never witnessed one of those performances would want to see the stage, just to be in the room with it as well as those who did witness those electric performances. It was a source of pride for him, and an outlet to perform for his fam whenever he chose to do so.

Does he know about the personal growth of Prince? Or, does he see Prince only as the young man who jumped from high places doing the splits on stage when he was younger? He would do well to listen to  songs such as “The Only Love There Is, Is the Love We Make”, “Dear Mr. Man”, or “The Holy River”. The personal growth of Prince was indeed, amazing and beautiful.

Does he not know about the causes that Prince championed? Does he not know about Prince’s philanthropy and generosity? If so, then why is there no place in the museum which informs the public of this? The millions of dollars he gave to various causes? If not then he should take a look at this list incorporated in a petition to make Paisley Park a national landmark.   https://www.change.org/p/barack-obama-designate-prince-rogers-nelson-s-paisley-park-as-a-national-historic-landmark/u/17626949

Does he not know that Prince gave to local elementary schools so that they could purchases instruments for those children to learn to play an instrument?

Does he not know the reason for the title   of the album as “Emancipation”? Or why he had the word “slave” written on his cheek?Does he know the reason for the glyph known as “the symbol”?

prince-patent-keytarDoes he not know that Prince invented and patented the “keytar” or as musicians call it “the purple axe”?prince-keytar

Does he not know about the loyalty of Prince to his friends? Spending his own money to help friends in need when they faced hardships, illness or adversity? Prince was there for them.

All of the above should be incorporated into the Paisley Park museum. This is why many of Prince ‘fam’ is concerned.They know the true essence of Prince, who he was, and what he stood for. And one of those things was truth and dignity, and anything less is unacceptable.

As for the fence and the memorials, a virtual fence is not the same. Fans coming from around the world want to leave something at the site that is tangible. It is a point of real, not cyber, connection.  Yet Weinshanker told the city council that all of the memorials had been saved, and archived. And the council would have believed him until one Prince ‘fam’ who went to the fence and rescued the items that were left in the ground … in the mud came forward during the hearing. Even a souvenir tambourine from one of his tour performances was left in the mud,  illustrating that perhaps the assertions of Mr. Weinshanker were disingenuous at best.

And no matter whose idea it was, Prince would not want his ashes on display, but clearly would want them in a place where people could choose to go and pay their respects in that way, and not be forced to see it. Yes he loved the room in which they are in, but he loved  his studio even more, and clearly that is where he spent the most of his time. And even more appropriate would be to place his ashes in the round building, surrounded by the memorials which fans leave at the fence. Those who knew him, know that Prince would love to be surrounded by those memorials in a quiet place. Leaving those who wanted to see it, the choice of doing, or not doing so.

Joel Weinshanker, (the man who recently purchased all of the intellectual property of Elvis Presley, and who owns a company which makes entertainment trinkets-‘Naitonal Entertainment Collectibles Association’), needs to understand that he is dealing with the memory and a legacy of a man who was far more than a t-shirt and a mug.

Kudos to Chanhassen City Councilman McDonald who emphasized that there must be a way for fans to leave their memorials and seemed to understand the need for them to do so – but to be able to do so safely. Kudos to the ‘fam’ who appeared at the city council to stand up for the Prince that they knew. As one “fam”  (L.Dyer) stated so eloquently, “Prince was about perfection and excellence.” Prince stood up for what he believed, and right now, that is what his fam is doing for him. Kudos to the mayor of Chanhassen for his dedication and determination to see Paisley Park become a museum in the city which Prince clearly loved dearly.

There was and is far more to Prince Rogers Nelson than music, and Mr. Weinshanker should do his homework and make certain that the Paisley Park illustrates that fact. Since it is still a work in progress, he would do well to consult with some who knew him such as @drfunkenberry  and other fam to make certain that it is done right and with the proper tone and respect.  Prince and Elvis were two different individuals and what worked for Graceland may not be what is needed for Paisley Park.  Just sayin’ ….

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