The Prince is dead. Prince is free. Long be the love for his weird, nonconforming, wonderful, multiple masculinities. That’s one major lesson he left behind. According to Steven Thrasher in this piece in the Guardian,
Now let’s tell a little black truth. And it is that some of us didn’t always know how to absorb Prince’s transgressive masculinities into our own. Many of us didn’t know where to put him in our masculine consciousness, or indeed, femininities.
But there he was, off-centre, nonconformist, sexy, creative, be it with Lenny Kravitz or Beyonce, always at the margins of our field of vision as he channelled Little Richard, James Brown, Stevie Wonder, and many others. Above all, though, Prince was Cool. From men like him one learns to cultivate a certain Freedom for oneself. And he certainly was no Slave, although he had money.
May we continue to learn from the genius, by which I mean the moving spirit, and the music in The Vault (that’s another weird thing about Symbol), of the Artist Formerly Known as Prince; learn that men like him have been here before, and will continue to teach us in their way, entertain the world, create beauty, and always there if we just turn our heads. In so many beautiful ways. Even when in the depths of despair, listen to the music: forever young, gifted, and magical as darkness on rainy starlit night. And dance.