WHAT: For the first time, an assortment of Prince’s music videos–10 of them, including “When Doves Cry,” “Let’s Go Crazy,” and “I Wanna Be Your Lover”–are now available for streaming on Vevo.
WHO: It’s not Prince’s full videography, and the focus here seems to be largely on his work with The Revolution, which is to say, work he recorded with Warner Bros.
WHY WE CARE: It’s a double-edged sword seeing Prince’s work land on streaming networks after his death, given how tightly-controlled he kept his catalog in his lifetime. But his body of work is among the best thing anybody ever did with recorded music, and the videos that accompanied it captivated an entire generation–a generation that honored his shocking death last April with purple tattoos and heartfelt tributes to his genius. Music writer Piotr Orlov penned one for Vevo’s blog to announce the news of the videos, in fact.
Prince famously battled for the right to control his work and his image, but none of us are able to maintain that right in perpetuity, after our deaths, and the fact that Prince’s work now appears on Vevo, Spotify, and more isn’t just a statement about the inevitability of corporate power–it’s also proof that even after all of the people currently making money off of his legacy are gone, people are still gonna hear the guitar intro to “When Doves Cry” and be moved to move their bodies, or the drum stomp of “Dirty Mind” and feel feelings they didn’t know they had in them. Giving people a chance to watch a young Prince in his prime with decades of amazing music still ahead of him is a gift that endures. And regardless of the circumstances, we should find space to celebrate that.