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DMA Arts & Letters Live: Neal Karlen on Prince

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Photo courtesy of Neal Karlen

In partnership with The Black Academy of Arts and Letters, Inc., DMA Arts & Letters Live will present author Neal Karlen, who will talk about his book, This Thing Called Life: Prince’s Odyssey, On and Off the Record, a warm and candid biography of one of rock’s greatest talents: Prince.

Karlen will be in conversation with Dr. Steven W. Lewis, Curator, National Museum of African American Music, Nashville.

Karlen was the only journalist Prince granted in-depth press interviews to for over a dozen years, from before Purple Rain to when the artist changed his name to an unpronounceable glyph. According to Prince’s former fiancée Susannah Melvoin, Karlen was “the only reporter who made Prince sound like what he really sounded like.” 

Long before they met as writer and subject, Prince and Karlen knew each other as two of the gang of kids who biked around Minneapolis’s mostly segregated Northside. Karlen eventually interviewed Prince for three Rolling Stone cover stories, co-wrote a rock opera with the musician, and remained a lifelong friend.

Going back to Prince Rogers Nelson’s roots, especially his contradictory, often tortured, and sometimes violent relationship with his father, the book profoundly changes what we know about Prince, and explains him as no biography has: a superstar who calls in the middle of the night to talk, who loved The Wire and could quote from every episode of The Office, who frequented libraries and jammed spontaneously for local crowds (and fed everyone pancakes afterward), and who was lonely but craved being alone.

A recording of the event will be available for ticketholders through December 1.

In partnership with The Black Academy of Arts and Letters, Inc., DMA Arts & Letters Live will present author Neal Karlen, who will talk about his book, This Thing Called Life: Prince’s Odyssey, On and Off the Record, a warm and candid biography of one of rock’s greatest talents: Prince.

Karlen will be in conversation with Dr. Steven W. Lewis, Curator, National Museum of African American Music, Nashville.

Karlen was the only journalist Prince granted in-depth press interviews to for over a dozen years, from before Purple Rain to when the artist changed his name to an unpronounceable glyph. According to Prince’s former fiancée Susannah Melvoin, Karlen was “the only reporter who made Prince sound like what he really sounded like.”

Long before they met as writer and subject, Prince and Karlen knew each other as two of the gang of kids who biked around Minneapolis’s mostly segregated Northside. Karlen eventually interviewed Prince for three Rolling Stone cover stories, co-wrote a rock opera with the musician, and remained a lifelong friend.

Going back to Prince Rogers Nelson’s roots, especially his contradictory, often tortured, and sometimes violent relationship with his father, the book profoundly changes what we know about Prince, and explains him as no biography has: a superstar who calls in the middle of the night to talk, who loved The Wire and could quote from every episode of The Office, who frequented libraries and jammed spontaneously for local crowds (and fed everyone pancakes afterward), and who was lonely but craved being alone.

A recording of the event will be available for ticketholders through December 1.

In partnership with The Black Academy of Arts and Letters, Inc., DMA Arts & Letters Live will present author Neal Karlen, who will talk about his book, This Thing Called Life: Prince’s Odyssey, On and Off the Record, a warm and candid biography of one of rock’s greatest talents: Prince.

Karlen will be in conversation with Dr. Steven W. Lewis, Curator, National Museum of African American Music, Nashville.

Karlen was the only journalist Prince granted in-depth press interviews to for over a dozen years, from before Purple Rain to when the artist changed his name to an unpronounceable glyph. According to Prince’s former fiancée Susannah Melvoin, Karlen was “the only reporter who made Prince sound like what he really sounded like.”

Long before they met as writer and subject, Prince and Karlen knew each other as two of the gang of kids who biked around Minneapolis’s mostly segregated Northside. Karlen eventually interviewed Prince for three Rolling Stone cover stories, co-wrote a rock opera with the musician, and remained a lifelong friend.

Going back to Prince Rogers Nelson’s roots, especially his contradictory, often tortured, and sometimes violent relationship with his father, the book profoundly changes what we know about Prince, and explains him as no biography has: a superstar who calls in the middle of the night to talk, who loved The Wire and could quote from every episode of The Office, who frequented libraries and jammed spontaneously for local crowds (and fed everyone pancakes afterward), and who was lonely but craved being alone.

A recording of the event will be available for ticketholders through December 1.

WHEN

WHERE

Virtual
https://dma.org/programs/event/virtual-event-neal-karlen-prince

TICKET INFO

$7-$40
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