(April 2019) I am very excited to be attending Celebration 2019 in Minneapolis in honor of Prince this week. This is my second year attending this event and I highly recommend it to Prince fans/fams/friends. Not only does Paisley Park have a phenomenal 4 day program, but the city is FILLED with Prince-related events including meet and greets, fan parties, dance parties, alumni concerts, tributes, and so much more.
On this page, I will be sharing with you daily updates, photos, and summaries. This will provide info for those who were not able to attend and hopefully inspire you to come next year.
DAY ONE VIDEO UPDATE
(Wednesday, April 24)
Today was insane! I landed in Minneapolis around 2pm and ran into some friends of the channel at the airport. I met up with Stone Blake who’s my friend and an associate of the channel. After checking into the hotel, we visited Graffiti Bridge and ran into Dan Lacey, “The Painter of Pancakes”. Before the NPG Meet and Greet back at the Moxy, I had the pleasure of meeting and interviewing Kadyn who is a 10-year-old Prince fan from Pennsylvania battling brain cancer. An online fundraiser helped pay for him and his family to come to Minnesota so he could visit Paisley Park. Awesome kid and so happy that our paths crossed! During the NPG Meet and Greet, I talked with Morris Hayes, Josh Dunham, Chloe Calvin, and more. Following the event, I interviewed NPG members Morris Hayes, Tony M., and lead singer MacKenzie. I will be sharing this interview on my YouTube channel in the coming weeks so please make sure to subscribe. After the interview, I headed to my room to record the video about the upcoming new Prince Album, Originals. I was completely exhausted by this time and was bummed that I couldn’t make the Starr Party. I hope to meet up with Alphonso and the People of Paisley Park over the next few days. Please check out my video post above for more details about my first day!
DAY TWO VIDEO UPDATE
(Thursday, April 25)
Today was my “day two” but was the first official Celebration 2019 Day 1. Before going to Paisley, Stone and I had breakfast at Perkins Restaurant in Chanhassen. This was a place that Prince would frequent and I have read about him stopping there for milkshakes and late night meals. Celebration 2019 kicked off with unreleased footage of The Time followed by Jesse Johnson (from the original lineup of the Time and one of the Original 7ven) talking about his relationship with Prince. It was a very open, heartfelt talk and it was interesting and touching to hear him be so candid. During lunch I talked with fans of the channel and event attendees and had a yummy vegan meal. The first half of our Paisley tour was after lunch followed by Jesse Johnson’s performance. He was incredible—HE KILLED IT. Hearing Jesse live gave me an all new impression of him as an artist and I need to do a review of his work soon. His guitar playing really floored me. After Paisley, I went to the Capri Theater and saw Shelby J.’s One Night Only show. It was phenomenal. Her band was outstanding in particular her guitarist, background singers, and Adrian Crutchfield on sax. Also, some alumni including Ida Nielsen and Renato Neto joined Shelby on stage as special guests. Shelby’s live performance of God is Here blew me away. I recommend that everyone to check out her music. Shelby J.’s show was a great mix of her own songs, covers and some fun Prince tributes. And she gave me a shout out at the end of the show which was super cool! After her performance, I took photos with Shelby during the meet and greet which I included in my Celebration album on Facebook. I met so many people today and I am touched that my hard work on my channel has an impact on so many people. It’s an honor to actually meet my subscribers in person. Check out the video above for my full recap.
DAY THREE VIDEO UPDATE
(Friday, April 26)
Today was a short day at Paisley because of the Big Screen concert at night. Track 2 at Paisley today started with a 45 minute screening of the 2014 Prince and 3rdEyeGirl concert in Vienna on Prince’s 56th birthday. This was followed by a talk with Jeff Katz who was a long time Prince photographer and creative collaborator. He is also a very well known photographer in the entertainment industry and you can check out his work at www.jeffkatzphotography.com and www.princebyjeffkatz.com. Loved hearing his stories including a great Camille story. After Jeff, the last event at Paisley today was the Graffiti Bridge movie panel with Craig Rice (producer), Ingrid Chavez, T.C. Ellis, and moderated by Steve Parke. This panel included lots of fun stories by all (check out my video that has some detail). On my way back to the hotel, I stopped by to show my support of Justice4Cuz (https://justice4cuz.com) and their current fight against the opioid crisis. Later that night was the Prince: Concert on the Big Screen event at The Armory. I really enjoyed it and wasn’t as emotional as last year. There was nothing standing in the way of his fun this year and it felt so good to just sing along and take it all in. Aside from these events, I met many new people today including seeing lots of Track 1 peeps at the Armory event. And if that wasn’t enough fun for one day, I went to the late night show at the Icehouse to see Eric Leeds and Paul Peterson (LP Music) which I absolutely loved. My comments for all are included in the Day 3 Recap above. Cheers!
DAY FOUR VIDEO UPDATE
(Saturday, April 27)
Today I went to Paisley Park right after breakfast and enjoyed a full day of programming there. We saw Bob Cavallo on the sound stage. He told some fun stories during his interview including that he and Prince funded the movie and then recouped their money from Warner Bros when the studio came on board. Initially, Prince funded 80% of the movie and Bob Cavallo funded 20% of the movie. After this interview, we had the Funk Soldiers panel. At there was some crossover in the topics from last year, but overall it was a good mix of info for returning Celebration attendees and new ones. Following panel, I met Andrea Swensson (Funk Soldiers panel moderator, host/writer at The Current, and author of Got to Be Something Here: The Rise of the Minneapolis Sound book. I also got to say hi to Adrian Crutchfield, and JD Steele who was a part of the Prince sound that drew me in in the 90’s. During lunch (tasty!), I chatted with Lenny from the Purple Underground. and also it was so funny running into people who watched survival video!! Loved everyone’s comments! Lunch was followed by a concert screening of a show from the Musicology tour. Part of the video was dance music and the second part was an acoustic guitar set which was really cool because it was different than the YouTube version we have.2004 Prince was so amazing! After this concert screening, we had the Funk Soldiers concert. They did a whole new line up of songs this year and also had Chance Howard performing with them who adds a magical ingredient. I was super excited that they opened with Rock n Roll is Alive (and it Lives in Minneapolis) and closed with 2010’s Act of God. To hear them live was great. I also got a chance to chat with Cat Glover’s manager! After Paisley, my next event was later that night— Party Uptown at the Moxy. I was a special guest there and they had a really nice turnout considering all the other events on Saturday night. The Live Stream is not available online though because of the music being played and typical copyright stuff. During the event I got to interview Minneapolis collage artist Kristi Abbott and also renowned journalist Neal Karlen. Part of the event at the Moxy hotel included a tribute to Hollywood, a former member of Grand Central, by Terry Jackson. Platform to have fun but also pay homage that was part of princes legacy. Also at the event was photographer Allen Beaulieu and artist Andre Hollingsworth. I was scheduled to interview Kim Berry but she sold books, took some pics and left so I never got to talk with her. It was full day and thanks to everyone who came to party. Everyone has been showing me so much love and means so much to me. You see me all the time but I never get to see my subscribers so this was an incredible experience to see so many faces. I am looking forward to breakfast tomorrow morning with other Prince influencers! Check out my video for added details of my day!
DAY FIVE VIDEO UPDATE
(Sunday, April 28)
Sunday was another really good day! I went to a breakfast at Perkins with other Prince content creators. It was super nice to share stories and challenges with everyone there. We had some very interesting conversations. After lunch, I went to see Avengers: Endgame with friends who were filming Shelby J.’s performance at the Capri as well as at the Party Uptown at the Moxy event. This was non-Prince related, but all I will say about the movie is SEE IT. Following, at Paisley, the first Celebration event today was a screening from one of the 21 Night in London shows. The first half was basically the same as the first half of the Musicology concert screening we saw on Saturday, but the second half included songs that we hadn’t heard yet which I loved. After the screening, my group did the second half of the Paisley tour which included seeing Prince’s video editing room, the atrium, and a few other displays. By the way, shoutout to all the tour guides and staff at Paisley who add so much to the experience of being there—thank you! Following the tour was a panel with The Revolution members. I enjoyed hearing them talk and learning about their relationship with Prince. It was a different relationship than others had with him in later years and I dug hearing them talk. In the video, I say that Wendy said “He gave us all to each other”, but it was actually Lisa who said that. In any case, I loved this and it’s so true. I feel that, especially here, where we all come together for this event. After this panel, was lunch. Great food, more visiting with friends, and lots of goodbyes. After lunch was The Revolution show which included Mountains (my fav). Some of the songs were just performed by the five Revolution members which was good, but when a lead singer was added, they were absolutely electric! Stokley Williams filled those shoes in this performance and did an incredible job. Overall, I loved seeing The Revolution perform and you can hear all my comments on the video above. It should be noted though, that I became a Prince fan in 1990, post-Revolution, so in that may add better context to my comments and perspectives. Also, congrats to The Revolution for getting a star on the wall at First Ave! The entire experience at Celebration was such an awesome time. There was so much love in and love out. I have more details and closing comments in the video above. Check it out because it’s better said in the video than I could ever write here. Thanks for following along with me and my Celebration 2019 experience!
Celebration 2019 Guide
(For reference only; This event has past)
Official Event Information:
CELEBRATION 2019 – April 25-28 – Paisley Park, Chanhassen MN
PRINCE: IN CONCERT ON THE BIG SCREEN – April 26, 2019 – The Armory, Minneapolis MN
(Concert at The Armory included with Celebration 2019 tickets but can be purchased separately)
Alumni & Related Music Performances around MPLS:
SHELBY J. ONE NIGHT ONLY – April 25th – The Capri Theater (7PM Performance)
SHELBY J. ONE NIGHT ONLY – April 25th – The Capri Theater (10PM Performance)
JEARLYN STEELE: THIS IS ME – April 25th – Dakota (7PM Performance)
JELLYBEAN JOHNSON EXPERIENCE – April 25th – Minnesota Music Cafe, St Paul (7PM Mult Performers)
ERIC LEEDS/ST PAUL PETERSON (LP MUSIC) – April 26th – Icehouse MPLS (11PM Performance)
NEW POWER GENERATION – April 27th – Fine Line Music Cafe (10PM Performance)
LOVE 2 THE 9s – April 27th – The Parkway (11PM Performance)
FIRST AVENUE – Erotic City – Saturday, April 20th – 8PM
PAISLEY PARK AFTER DARK – DJ DANCE PARTY – Sunday, April 21 – 6PM
LEE’S LIQUOR LOUNGE – Free Urself Too Dance Party – Tuesday, April 23rd – 9PM
ICE HOUSE MPLS – Dance Electric Ol Skool Company – Saturday, April 27 – 11PM
MINNESOTA MUSIC CAFE – Legacy (Multiple Performers) – Saturday, April 27 – 7pm
PURPLE FAMILY MEET & GREET II – Tuesday, April 23rd – 5PM – Bunkers
NPG MEET & GREET – Wednesday, April 24 7:30PM – Moxy Uptown Hotel
STARR PARTY II – Wednesday, April 24 – 8PM – The Pourhouse (Tickets Required or Pay at Door)
PAISLEY 5 & DIME C19 KICKOFF PARTY – Thursday, April 24 – 5PM – Glueks ($31.21 *Fundraiser)
PURPLE PAISLEY COCKTAIL PARTY – Saturday, April 27 4PM to 7:30PM – Canopy at Hilton (RSVP – Free Cover!)
PARTY UPTOWN! – Saturday, April 27 9PM- Moxy Minneapolis Uptown (RSVP – Free Cover!)
Prince4Ever Tribute Fence – Beginning Thursday, April 18th – For Fan Memorial Messages
Remembering Prince III – Thursday, April 24th – 6:30PM – Chanhassen Public Library (Free)
Lighting Up Purple – Friday, April 27th @ Dusk – Buildings & landmarks scheduled to turn purple including
the I-35W Bridge, IDS Center, Target Field, and Hennepin County Lowry Avenue Bridge.
ELECTRIC FETUS Records, Music & Much More!
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