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Prince: Inside the Music and the Masks [Hardcover]

Ronin Ro
2.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
RRP: 20.00
Price: 16.00 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

1 Feb 2012

In over thirty years as one of the most original and charismatic figures in modern music, Prince Rogers Nelson has enjoyed huge success – and courted considerable controversy. Now, acclaimed rock journalist Ronin Ro chronicles both the man and his music. During the course of his journey from teenage obscurity to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Prince has provoked moral outrage, starred in a hit movie, adopted an unpronounceable symbol for a stage name, confronted record labels and fostered young talent, making a profound mark on the entertainment industry and pop culture at large. Moreover, his restless creativity has produced a string of international hits including ‘Little Red Corvette’, ‘Let’s Go Crazy’, ‘Kiss’ and ‘Cream’, and at the height of his fame the album Purple Rain was selling at a rate of a million copies a week in the US alone. Through access to an unrivalled array of witnesses to Prince’s remarkable rise, including former producers, bandmates and managers, Ronin Ro gets closer to him than any previous biographer, peeling away the masks to lay bare the story of a true modern icon.

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Aurum Press Ltd (1 Feb 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1845138244
  • ISBN-13: 978-1845138240
  • Product Dimensions: 16.2 x 24.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 487,990 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

After penning a column for Dance Music Report magazine, Ronin Ro began a groundbreaking run in The Source. From here, Ro contributed to SPIN, Rolling Stone, VIBE, Rap Pages, XXL, Vanity Fair, Playboy, USA Today, The Los Angeles Times, and more. To date, Ro has authored eight Books, including the classic Have Gun Will Travel, the definitive Jack Kirby bio Tales to Astonish, Raising Hell (containing original interviews with Run-D.M.C. and others), Dr. Dre: The Biography, the controversial novella Street Sweeper (whose hero, Jerome Usher, reputedly inspired a similar hero in the motion picture Man on Fire) and the upcoming Prince: Inside the Music and the Masks. Currently in New York City, known for epic, classically-structured works, the influential Author is currently at work on two nonfiction projects.

Product Description


'Beguiling...Ro is a fastidious detective.'

(Daily Telegraph)

'For anyone interested in Prince’s recording history, and what his battles reveal about the music business, Ro’s book is just the thing.’

(Mail on Sunday)

‘(Ronin’s) skills lie in the details – the impressive forensic gathering of the who, what, when and how. Unless the man himself one day puts finger to keyboard, these 360 pages are as close to the mysteries of Prince Rogers Nelson’s mind as we’re ever likely to get.’

(Word magazine)

‘Ro delivers a easily digestible, page-turner of a narrative that’s characterised by lean prose and which delineates Prince’s life story with efficient clarity’

(Record Collector magazine)

About the Author

Ronin Ro is an award-winning author and music journalist. He has written for Rolling Stone, USA Today, Playboy and Vanity Fair. He is the author of eight books about the entertainment industry including a biography of Dr Dre: ‘Probably one of the 10 best books on rap’ Booklist

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Customer Reviews

2.7 out of 5 stars
2.7 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A flawed look at a musical legend 26 Mar 2012
I'm a huge Prince fan and over the years have read every single biography written about the man. When I heard that Ronin Ro had spent a decade researching and writing this book I was keen to read it, but the end result is incredibly flawed.

Told chronologically (but more on that later) the book begins with Prince's childhood and his rise to fame, this section ending with the triumphs of "Purple Rain" in the charts and at the box office. Fans will be familiar with much of the content here, but there are still some new anecdotes and stories, so I still found this part enjoyable despite having read most of it before. Then the focus shifts to Prince's reign at the top of the charts, culminating with the "Lovesexy" album, after which his star began to fall, the quality of his albums taking a downturn, and his sales starting to reduce. The penultimate section of the book covers his darkest time, where his albums barely sold at all outside of his most dedicated fans, plus his personal life was in turmoil due to the death of his new born child and divorce from his wife, before the final part deals with his return thanks to albums such as "Musicology", "3121" and "Planet Earth". I found the post-1990 material in the book the most interesting, seeing how everything went so badly wrong for Prince, and how he tried to deal with the multitude of problems.

So why only three stars? As a fan I noticed a lot of errors in the book, such as lyrics and song titles being incorrectly quoted, mistakes in performer credits, mistakes in the description of videos... There are also a few chronological issues, where the timeline is questionable, such as an album being said to have been released before a particular event when it was actually the other way round.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A good informative read 10 Dec 2013
Although not a die hard fan I do own 14. Prince albums so am a little qualified to comment. I found the book to be well written informative, maybe it's not as accurate as some would like but is any show biz storey 100 percent. An inspirational storey proving hard work will get you where you want...only prince is brave and done only his way lol
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Don't bother! 29 July 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
As a big prince fan, I was looking forward to reading this book. Very poorly written and hard to follow. Would have got better facts from Wikipedia.

Very disappointing!
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