Off The Tracks presents Purple Reign

Well I've threatened this for some time now and so it's going to happen. Next Thursday, August 1, Off The Tracks presents Purple Reign: The Music of Prince (DJ Set).

At San Francisco Bath House, Cuba St, Wellington, 9pm-12am (or longer - I'm up for it if you are) I'll be playing Prince records. All vinyl. All night. All Prince. That's the aim.

The reason? Well, not many of you will know this of course, I keep it pretty quiet, hardly ever mention it, but I'm a bit of a Prince fan.

The first time I didn't mention it here was when I looked at that amazing first decade of music.

I followed that up by not mentioning there were plenty of gems in the second decade too, you just had to look a bit harder.

More recently I didn't mention Prince again by gushing over a recent return to his album Controversy, one of my favourites.

So, yes, a well-kept secret, obviously.

I'm no great shakes of a DJ. I don't even try to mix, to blend, to beat-match, juggle, do any sort of trick - beyond leave the decks to get a beer now and then without tripping over the chord or knocking the arm to scratch the record when I bugger off to the loo. Yep, that's about as tricky as it gets for me.

I'm all about the records - the collecting - sharing that stuff with people. I've spent years and far too much time and money gathering up favourite records and it's fun to take them out and share them. And if there's a wee pop or skip or jump then that's part of the story of the record.

My aim for the evening is to share some of my favourite Prince tunes - obviously there's plenty of pop hits and I won't shy from playing those. If you feel like dancing then that'll be fine, the title track from Controversy will get an airing and I Wanna Be Your Lover and probably Why You Wanna Treat Me So Bad but I'll also play something from the Batman soundtrack because that's a favourite - I might even play 200 Balloons the B-side to Batdance because, erm, yeah, it went really well the last time I DJ'd Batdance (at a wedding!)

I'll play album tracks, B-sides, I've got some bootlegs (though I may have to sneak in some Mp3s for some tracks - so not quite all vinyl, though all vinyl all night is the aim) and, provided it's a Prince song, I'll take requests.

I have no game plan beyond playing loads of Prince. I have no pre-planned must-play set-list. I figure there's a Prince song to suit all moods and all people. Anyone so sure they don't like anything Prince has done just doesn't get it and hasn't done the listening. There's enough songs to, er, go all night (cf: Let's Pretend We're Married).

So if you want to dance then dance, if you want to drink and stand around and talk about that great concert film, Sign O' The Times then you can do that too, or instead, or as well.

It's free entry. Doors at 8pm. Records rolling from 9pm.

The aim is for a bit of fun.

Should I include some of the songs Prince wrote and released under aliases or for other people? I could do. That might be your call. You can come along and help dictate the flow.

If it goes well I might do other evenings - and by that I mean not just another night of Prince songs (we could do a week of them and not even repeat a single song) but other evenings playing records by favourite musicians who have a great back catalogue (provided I have the vinyl to get through a whole set). Next up I'm thinking David Bowie. That could work right? Maybe even Bruce Springsteen. Though probably not, Bruce fans are a bit scary en masse.

So, spread the word - if you know Wellington folk who you think would dig an evening of Prince. There's a Facebook page/invite-thingy set up and I'm sharing all sorts of Prince-related posts there. A bit of fun, to get you in the mood...

What is your single favourite Prince song?  (I'd possibly say Raspberry Beret if forced to pick an obvious one; bit of a fan of Ballad of Dorothy Parker too).

Do you have a favourite Prince album? I'm currently really digging Parade - it's long been a favourite but I really love it these days.

And what songs would you want to hear? Any obscurities?

Is this your idea of a good time? Or your idea of hell? Will I see you there? (Come and say hi).

And if not a Prince evening are there any suggestions for another evening of all vinyl/all one artist vinyl DJ-sets that you'd like to hear?

Off The Tracks presents Purple Reign

Blog on the Tracks is on Facebook and Twitter.

You can also check out Off the Tracks for The Vinyl Countdown, reviews and other posts.