Prince: A Pop Life by Dave Hill - review by Charles Miller

Charles Miller

Not Verbally Comfortable

Prince: A Pop Life

By

Faber & Faber 209pp £6.95 order from our bookshop
 

My strongest memory of a short visit to Minneapolis is of a supermarket which sells antique furniture and live lobsters. I have never been anywhere which seemed to take its affluence so much for granted. Almost the only other thing I know about the place is that it is the home of Prince (the celebrated performer of popular songs, m’lud). As a youth – poor, black, and very rude – his presence behind a trolley at the lobster counter can hardly be imagined. So it was with a thirst for understanding that I began reading Prince: A Pop Life.

Sure enough, in his first chapter Dave Hill explains that blacks account for only three per cent of the population of Minneapolis, Prince was always a black boy in a white world. Apart from the question of his name (it turns out he was christened Prince Nelson after his father’s

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