By the time Prince was 18, he was a fully realized and accomplished artist who could walk into the Sound80 studio in Minneapolis’ Seward neighborhood and write, produce, record, sing, and perform all the instruments on his demo tape, and then land a major recording contract with Warner Brothers by the time he was 19. How did Prince’s childhood in Minneapolis shape the artist he became?
Prince Rogers Nelson grew up in four different homes on Minneapolis’ North side. As we visit the three houses which still exist and one neighborhood school, we’ll learn how the Great Migration brought Prince’s ancestors to Minnesota, and how growing up in Minneapolis produced the specific experiences which enabled his musical career. We’ll learn about the instruments he learned and where; his early song-writing experiences; the neighborhood friends who became his first band mates…and how Minneapolis’ efforts to desegregate the city’s schools helped expose Prince to new musical influences and key collaborators, producing the unique “Minneapolis Sound” of the late ’70s and early ’80s.
This tour will walk approximately 2.5 miles, and is led by Kristen Zschomler, a local historian who is researching places associated with Prince in Minnesota up to his construction of Paisley Park. Kristen will provide tour goers with her list of over 30 Prince properties she has identified to date throughout Minneapolis and the western suburbs.