||From the Vault...
© Warner Bros. Records
Year of Release: 1978
Soft And Wet
Just As Long
My Love Is Forever
Prince related sites:
The year was 1978, and it was the debut of a new artist who went by the
name of Prince. (Long before he would change his name to a symbol, then change
it back to his original name.) Little did we know that Prince Rogers Nelson
(his actual real name) would make a huge impact not only on music, but how
Prince himself would become as an artist, and on himself.
It has been a long time since a Prince album has been featured here.
In the history of albums chosen for this site, Prince has appeared 4 times --
all named Prince; his last appearance was in 1996 with his Controversy
release. In 1993, he changed his name to an unpronounceable symbol, due to his
bitter battle with his record company, Warner Bros. With that, bitter was the
appropriate word to describe Prince: He would sue fan websites for using his
name/symbol, and any references to his earlier Warner Bros. releases. His
contract with WB finally passed recently, and he changed his name back to his
original name, Prince. But during his time as "the Symbol," his popularity
was nulled -- he did release albums under his new name, yet these albums were
not as popular as his WB releases. Despite heavy radio airplay, such as tracks
from 1999 and Purple Rain, radio ignored the Symbol's releases,
as Prince himself ignored the media (one time appearing on an awards show wearing
a drape across his face, and had a translator if anyone wanted to talk to him.)
Prince was definitely bitter, and with that attitude, it was best to just ignore
him (despite how controversial he became), and let things blow over with his
Yet for this review, we travel back in time with his official 1978 debut,
For You, becoming his fifth album on our site. An album that features late
1970s soul and funk, and a preparation of betting things to come for the purple one.
The title track is short, just over a minute long, and has a Michael Jackson
meets Gospel approach. With just over a minute in length, you kind of wished
it was more. "In Love" kicks in next, with a soulful funky 1970s sound,
sounding fresh with its funky keyboard works and Prince's initimate vocals.
Speaking of soulful and funky, "Soft And Wet" is a great bouncy
tune, and it would become the beginning stages of what would later become
Prince as a suggestive lyricist, with references to sex.
"Crazy You" is very interesting, as it could easily fit the New Age
Jazz format, being another slow and soulful morsel. "Just As Long As We're
Together" has the disco dance beat, as this style would be similar to many
tunes that would follow a year later on Prince's self-titled release. What is
also amazing to mention, is the instrumental portion of this song, as Prince
played all the instruments on this album, likewise his next 4 releases.
Like "Crazy You," "Baby" is another slow, soulful number, again,
easily fitting the New Age Jazz format. Likewise, "My Love Is Forever"
has the upbeat 1970s Soul sound, as heard in groups such as Earth, Wind & Fire.
"So Blue" returns to the slow, yet erotic soulful singing by Prince, as
in earlier songs as "Crazy You" and "Baby." The album's closer,
"I'm Yours" is another funky soulful number, showcasing the funk of
1970s Soul Music.
The length of For You is just a little over a half hour's worth of
music. And being this the debut of Prince, many probably wanted to hear more
when it was first released in 1978. We would definitely hear more of Prince,
as he would become one of the most popular artists of the early Eighties,
alongside Michael Jackson. Yet For You has a more 1970s soulful approach,
as his 1980s output -- it was the beginning of Prince, showing his audience
that he would become a more popular artist, with his lyrics, likewise his
performing and dancing, and being a multi-talented musician.
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