Dan Piepenbring was selected by Prince to help him write his memoirs, but Prince died shortly after they began working together. Piepenbring edited the new book 'The Beautiful Ones' which includes writings by Prince about his childhood and adolescence, as well as photos, letters, and lyric sheets.
If you've been wondering where Prince has gone, he's re-signed with Warner Brothers Records after spending the last few years of sporadic independent releases. Now Prince has released two new albums simultaneously: Art Official Age appears under his own name, and PlectrumElectrum is the debut record of a Prince back-up band called 3rdEyeGirl, but it includes Prince's vocals, guitar, and production style throughout. Fresh Air critic Ken Tucker has a review of both albums.
Two fine albums by drummer Ronald Shannon Jackson and the Decoding Society, Man Dance and its sequel Barbeque Dog, are now available again as downloads, after being out of print for ages. Fresh Air critic Kevin Whitehead says they're prime examples of the 1980s' so-called "free-funk" movement.
Stone is known to millions from the records he made with Sly and the Family Stone. But his early days, and the recordings he produced for his own Stone Flower label, add another dimension to the career of this enigmatic character, rock historian Ed Ward said.
Dedicated and curious music fans are regularly finding new chapters in rock history from around the globe. Critic Milo Miles reviews one recent collection, a series of anthologies focusing on the lively story of vintage pop in Panama.
Blending funk, hip-hop, and jazz sounds, the New Orleans-based band Galactic combines musical genres to create a new sound that they make their own. Critic Ken Tucker says heir newest album Ya-Ka-May is a true rhythmic pleasure.
Collins got his start with James Brown, where he "defined the finger-popping funk bass style" (Rolling Stone). He went on to work with George Clinton as part of the Parliment-Funkadelic tribe, before forming Bootsy's Rubber Band. On stage, he created alter egos, including Bootzilla, Boot-Tron, and King of the Geepies. He's put out more than 30 albums, and has just released "Blasters of the Universe," with a new band.