YOU TUBE PERSONALITY AND WRITER PRINCE’S FRIEND CONTRIBUTES TO THE BOOK Prince: Before the Rain
Eloy Lasanta, more widely known as YouTube channel host “Prince’s Friend”, was honored to be a contributing writer of the hardcover book Prince: Before the Rain published by the Minnesota Historical Society in October of 2018.
Prince: Before the Rain is an inside look at the early years of Prince, presented through 300 Color and B&W iconic and never-before-seen images taken by photographer Allen Beaulieu who worked at Prince’s side from the late 1970s into the early ’80s. Beaulieu captured the musician’s progression from rising star to his ultimate purple superstardom. Always with a camera in hand, Beaulieu helped Prince carry forward his vision with legendary album cover images and promotional photos during the groundbreaking Dirty Mind, Controversy, and 1999 era, while also capturing live performances on tour with Prince.
The beautiful 224 page book, with a foreword by Dez Dickerson and an Introduction by Jim Walsh, paints another important picture in the mythology of the celebrated, influential, and endlessly invigorating performer while providing an intimate portrait of the Minnesota artist about to take over the world. It puts into focus the hallmark imagery—including behind the- scenes, candid, and casual shots—with recollections from Beaulieu on his personal and professional relationship with Prince. Going deeper into the context of these crucial years, supplemental text brings it all together with reminiscences from former bandmates, including Bobby Z., Dez Dickerson, André Cymone, and more.
“Allen was like another member of the band,” says The Revolution’s Lisa Coleman. “He was the only photographer that I ever remember just hanging around with us. Prince trusted him more than anyone since, I think. Al was allowed to be around in the dressing rooms and at rehearsals. . . . He was there in beginning, and we were really close, and he was a punk like we were. I am so glad to see someone unearthing his stuff.”
Prince: Before the Rain can be purchased for $29.95 (plus tax and shipping) on the Minnesota Historical Society website at http://www.mnhs.org/mnhspress/books/prince
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Allen Beaulieu was Prince’s photographer and friend beginning in the late 1970s. He photographed three album covers and toured extensively with the artist. He also worked for Rolling Stone, for IndyCar racing, and as a fashion photographer.
Dez Dickerson is a guitarist, singer, songwriter, producer, and record executive and was a member of the Revolution with Prince from 1978 to 1984. He currently runs Pavilion Synergies, a social marketing and music entertainment company.
Jim Walsh is a writer, columnist, journalist, and songwriter from Minneapolis and writer of the liner notes for the 1995 Prince album The Gold Experience and author of The Gold Experience: Following Prince in the ’90s.
Eloy Lasanta has carved out a niche for himself as a Prince Rogers Nelson historian in the entertainment industry’s world of music fandoms. As YouTuber “Prince’s Friend”, remains aligned with the overall estate mission of keeping Prince’s legacy alive.