Local Current Blog

Music News: Prince reigns atop album charts

A memorial to Prince at First Avenue (Emmet Kowler/MPR)

Prince has claimed the number one and number two slots atop the Billboard 200, in the wake of his sudden death last Thursday. The Very Best of Prince tops the chart, and Purple Rain is in the number two spot. It’s Prince’s first time atop the chart since 3121 debuted at number one in 2006.

Both Prince’s close friend Sheila E. and his brother-in-law Maurice Phillips have confirmed plans to turn Paisley Park into a museum honoring Prince’s memory. Additionally, Sheila E. says she has been named music director of a planned tribute concert to be held in Minneapolis with “all the original people.” (Local Current)

The Minnesota Legislature honored our native son on Monday, with the Senate and House both passing resolutions in Prince’s honor. “As history looks back on the contributions he made, he will be remembered in the same legion as Aaron Copland and many, many of the great composers who broke new genre and new ground,” said Sen. Scott Dibble. In the House, Rep. Peggy Flanagan sang “Purple Rain.” (Local Current)

In New Orleans, thousands joined a “Purple Rain Day” second line memorial parade through the Treme neighborhood, with a ceremonial horse-drawn hearse bearing a casket draped in purple. (Times-Picayune)

Prince’s wide-ranging philanthropy is being revealed as recipients of his generosity come forward to honor his memory. Environmental activist Van Jones, for example, says he once received an anonymous $50,000 donation from someone whose representative said, “I cannot tell you who the money is coming from, but his favorite color is purple.” (Rolling Stone)

Tributes from music stars continue to roll in. “He was such an inspiration,” wrote Kate Bush in a statement. “Playful and mind-blowingly gifted. He was the most inventive and extraordinary live act I’ve seen.” Recent onstage tributes include Prince covers by Billy Corgan (“The Cross”) and Liz Phair (“Nothing Compares 2 U”).

At a cancer research benefit on Sunday night, Chris Martin (Coldplay) performed “Raspberry Beret” with a band of eighth-graders. (Pitchfork)

Twin Peaks cast revealed

The cast of the new season of Twin Peaks has been revealed, and it includes musicians Trent Reznor (Nine Inch Nails), Sharon Van EttenElisabeth Maurus (a.k.a. Lissie), and Sky Ferreira — and the Cactus Blossoms.

Florence releases art film

Florence and the Machine have released The Odyssey, a 47-minute art film that “follows [Florence] Welch’s cinematic journey through the storm of heartbreak,” said the film’s director Vincent Haycock. “Like the layers of Dante’s purgatory, each song or chapter represents a battle that Florence traversed.” The film is available for viewing on Florence’s website. (Rolling Stone)

All work and no play…

Aesop Rock has shared a full stream of his new Rhymesayers album The Impossible Kid, accompanied by a shot-by-shot remake of The Shining enacted by miniature models. (Pitchfork)

Tegan and Sara are coming to town

Tegan and Sara have announced a world tour in support of their forthcoming album Love You to Death. The album drops June 3, and the tour opens May 2 in Los Angeles. The duo will play the State Theatre in Minneapolis on Sept. 12. (Rolling Stone)

Lin-Manuel Miranda raps about Puerto Rican debt crisis

To help explain the severity of Puerto Rico’s debt crisis, John Oliver asked Hamilton creator/star Lin-Manuel Miranda — whose is of Puerto Rican descent — to rap about the situation. (Rolling Stone)