I finally made the treck to Chanhassen to take the tour of Paisley Park Recording Studio, and also the home of Prince. He was one of my music idols, not just because he was good but because he was a Minnesota kid and never forgot that. I saw some things that I mentioned to the tour guides that caught my eye, and got to hear an unreleased jazz track he was working on before he died.

One thing I noticed was his size. Yes, I know it's published that he was 5'2", but looking at his clothing and in relation to myself, how short he was compared to me. I don't mean that as a dig at him, believe me I think he was a giant in the business. I also see him as a more humble person. He didn't have his awards in a flashy place, he didn't have all of his awards to show off. Rather, he had them displayed as though he was proud of them. I got this feeling like he was a songwriter, just like anyone else and won awards with the bigs.

I saw that he was proud, and he was confident in his abilities. I also caught a few secrets. He has analog and digital equipment in his studios. Which is why he could get different sounds for whatever he was working on. He had old vocal mics on the drums from radio. He made detailed notes to himself how to sing a certain song. The last thing he worked on had his writing and notes on it.

He was also vulnerable and put more of himself out there than I realized. He made sure his shows were spot on and rehearsed his bands and dancers till they hated him. They didn't though, they loved working for him and with him. Everyone who worked around him was polite, professional, and punctual. I was impressed with the lack of flash and the people he had working for him. I was also impressed with the fact that he was unique and didn't have to try to stay that way, he just was.

Take the tour! You will be glad you did.

Chris Allen

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