To celebrate his 52nd birthday, Prince turned the tables and gave his fans a present by debuting a new track titled "Hot Summer" on Minnesota public radio station the Current this morning. The bubbly song was likely inspired by the unexpected and record-breaking heat wave that struck Minnesota in the middle of May, which scorched the state with temperatures in the sticky 90s. With its handclap beat and organs straight out of the Rivieras' "California Sun," "Hot Summer" is Prince's ode to the beach soundtracks and classic West Coast pop songs, from the psych-era to new wave (especially on the Cars-esque keyboard solo). Antiquiet, which is hosting a stream of the song, compares "Hot Summer" to the Time's Prince-penned Graffiti Bridge track "Shake!" Given Prince's reputation of silencing his music on the web, check it out before it disappears.
In recent years, Prince has often turned to radio to premiere new music, starting in December 2008 when he unveiled four songs off his Lotusflow3r triple-disc set on Los Angeles rock station Indie 103. After returning to the Twin Cities, the public radio supporter also offered the Current a new song called "Cause and Effect" in February 2010. Prior to that, inspired by the Minnesota Vikings' march toward the Super Bowl, Prince quickly wrote and orchestrated a fight song for the football team titled "Purple and Gold," which was then handed to a Minnesota local news program to debut.
In other Prince-related news, the original members of the Time — the funk band fronted by Morris Day, Prince's adversary in Purple Rain — will reunite again (they last reformed for the 2008 Grammy Awards) to release their fifth album, their first since 1990's Pandemonium. Due out later this year, the Time's new disc will nearly coincide with the 30th anniversary of their self-titled Prince-penned debut album, which could lead to some reissues as well, Billboard reports.
Like Vanity 6, Apollonia 6 and the Family, the Time at first served as an outlet for Prince to write new music for bands he created and controlled under the terms of his Warner Bros. contract. Under Prince's tutelage, and thanks to Purple Rain, Morris Day and the Time had hits with "Jungle Love" and "The Bird." It's unclear whether the Time's new album, their first in two decades, will feature Prince's songwriting once again. The Time also plan to tour in support of their new disc.
To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here
MUSIC 9 Classic Devo Videos
OLYMPICS 18 Epic Opening Ceremonies