Prince's Handwritten Lyrics, Gifts to Exes Head to Auction - Rolling Stone
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Prince’s Handwritten Lyrics, Gifts to Exes Head to Auction

The draft of “I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man” has a very different chorus

Prince's Handwritten Lyrics, Gifts to Exes Head to AuctionPrince's Handwritten Lyrics, Gifts to Exes Head to Auction

Prince performs live at the Fabulous Forum on February 19, 1985 in Inglewood, California.

Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Prince‘s shoes, adorned with “love symbol” charms, his handwritten lyrics and gifts the artist gave to a couple of his exes are among the highlights of two auctions that will take place in the coming months.

The RR Auction house, based out of Boston, will offer Prince items from February 8th to the 15th. Items include personal effects the artist left with some of his close friends. One of the interesting items is a draft of the lyrics to Sign ‘O’ the Times’ “I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man” that the artist wrote out on “Prince”-watermarked paper; they contain an alternate version of the chorus, going “Baby, stop wasting your time/ I know what’s on your mind/ I won’t be satisfied with a one-night stand/ and I could never take the place of your man/ but I’ll try, but I’ll sure as hell try.” The lyrics are estimated to go for $10,000.

Other notable items include a Sennheiser microphone Prince used on the Purple Rain tour in 1985, a “love symbol”–branded tambourine and watch, a handwritten speech for the 1988 Minnesota Music Awards, an original “Black Album,” a purple piano and custom-made boots. The footwear was made by the City Cobbler and the zippers are adorned with “love symbol” charms. The shoes were “acquired via a former Paisley Park employee,” according to an auction listing and are expected to go for $50,000.

This spring, Julien’s Auction will hold “Music Icons: Property From the Life and Career of Prince” on May 18th. In addition to outfits that include love symbol–adorned booties like the ones listed above, the auction includes a Schecter “White Cloud” electric guitar that Prince commissioned in 2002, an outfit he wore in the movie Under the Cherry Moon, handwritten lyrics to an unreleased 1985 song called “Miss Understood” and tributes to Prince written by Mick Jagger, Anthony Kiedis, Patti Labelle and Joe Cocker.

Some of the more interesting items in this auction are donations of items that at one point or another belonged to Prince’s exes. One of the items is a faux-diamond bracelet the artist gave to his onetime fiancée Susannah Melvoin, who was a backup singer for the Revolution and a singer for Prince protégées the Family. It’s expected to fetch between $4,000 and $6,000.

Also included are items that belonged to Mayte Garcia, Prince’s first wife. These include a letter the artist wrote in purple ink apologizing for director Lisa Bonet not picking her to be in his video for “Walk Don’t Walk,” a song off his 1991 album Diamonds and Pearls. It’s estimated to go for between $4,000 and $6,000. There’s also a two-piece glitter outfit that he wore on the Jam of the Year and New Power Soul tours in the late Nineties that he left to Garcia. That could go for between $6,000 and $8,000.

In other news about Prince – who made a posthumous appearance at the Super Bowl yesterday – the artist will be the subject of Prince: Live on the Big Screen at Minneapolis’ Target Center on April 21st. His visage will sing “remastered and never-before-released” material along with a live band. 

In This Article: Prince


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