Today would have been Prince’s 60th birthday, and the late musician’s estate is celebrating by announcing a new posthumous album. Due out September 21st via Warner Bros. Records, the record is called Piano & A Microphone 1983, and aptly so.
The 35-minute collection features nine raw tracks Prince recorded to cassette at his Kiowa Trail home studio in Chanhassen, Minnesota using nothing but a piano and a mic. The “private rehearsal” took place just before he’d broken through to international stardom and ultimately mirrors his final “Piano & A Microphone Tour” from 2016. To maintain a sense of intimacy, the first seven tracks are presented exactly as they were originally recorded.
Providing “a rare, intimate glimpse into Prince’s creative process,” the album features early versions of “Purple Rain”, “17 Days”, “Strange Relationship”, and “International Lover”. Also included are a cover of Joni Mitchell’s “A Case of You” and a rendition of the 19th century spiritual “Mary Don’t You Weep”, which will play during the end credits of Spike Lee’s Jordan Peele-produced BlacKkKlansman when it hits theaters on August 10th.
Available digitally as well as on CD and LP, a deluxe version will include both physical formats alongside a 12-inch booklet with new liner notes from Prince’s engineer at the time, Don Batts, and candid, never-before-seen pictures. Pre-orders are going on now, and digital purchases come with an instant download of “Mary Don’t You Weep”, which you can also listen to below.
Piano & A Microphone 1983 Artwork:
Piano & A Microphone 1983 Tracklist:
01. 17 Days
02. Purple Rain
03. A Case Of You
04. Mary Don’t You Weep
05. Strange Relationship
06. International Lover
08. Cold Coffee & Cocaine
09. Why The Butterflies