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Prince's studio album


July 10, 2010


August 2008 - early 2010

Label (s) NPG Records

Format (s)

compact disc

Genre (s)

R&B , electronic dance music , funk , soul , pop music

Title (number)


running time


occupation All songs were produced, arranged, composed and performed by Prince . His band members added the following to the recordings:
  • Shelby J. - Backing Vocals in Compassion , Beginning Endlessly , Future Soul Song , Sticky Like Glue , Act of God , Everybody Loves Me , Laydown
  • Liv Warfield - Backing Vocals in Compassion , Beginning Endlessly , Future Soul Song , Sticky Like Glue , Act of God , Everybody Loves Me , Laydown
  • Elisa Dease - Backing Vocals in Compassion , Beginning Endlessly , Future Soul Song , Sticky Like Glue , Act of God , Everybody Loves Me , Laydown
  • Ray Montiero - Trumpet in Compassion
  • Anthony Malzone - Further design & layout
  • Meurig Rees - CD Label Design



Studio (s)

Paisley Park Studio ( Chanhassen )

Lotusflow3r / MPLSound / Elixer
20th Art Official Age
Single release

20Ten (pronounced "twenty-ten") is the 35th studio album by the US musician Prince . It was released on July 10, 2010 on his label NPG Records and was only available as a CD supplement from a commercial newspaper, which is why 20Ten was not listed in the international album charts. The album was only released in some European countries.

The music on the album belongs to the genre R&B , electronic dance music , funk , soul and pop music . Maceo Parker is one of the guest musicians . Music critics from newspapers where 20Ten was available as a CD accessory were enthusiastic about the album; Music critics from other newspapers were more reluctant to give praise. The tour for the album played Prince exclusively in Europe and consisted of only seven concerts, four of which were held as part of music festivals .


In August 2008 Prince recorded the song Compassion in Los Angeles , California in Sunset Sound, but reworked it in his Paisley Park Studio in Chanhassen , Minnesota. A year later he recorded Walk in Sand on August 1, 2009 in his Paisley Park studio. All other songs for 20Ten recorded Prince also in the Paisley Park Studio; on November 20, 2009 it was Future Soul Song and Sticky Like Glue . On November 25, 2009, Prince recorded Act of God , Sea of ​​Everything and Laydown .

In early 2010, Prince recorded the last three songs for 20Ten at Paisley Park Studio with Beginning Endlessly , Lavaux and Everybody Loves Me .

Marketing strategy

Since 2007, Prince has not worked with any recording company and increasingly separated himself from the music industry ; Although the records appear on his own music label NPG Records , Prince chose alternative channels for distribution. For example, his live CD Indigo Nights could only be purchased in 2008 as a CD supplement to his book 21 Nights , and in 2009 the US retail chain Target Corporation sold the 3-CD box Lotusflow3r .

On June 22, 2010, Prince met with representatives of the record company Warner Bros. Records , with which he had been under contract from 1977 to 1999. A possible distribution of the album 20Ten in the USA was discussed; In the end, however, no contract was concluded. Thereupon Prince decided on a different marketing strategy and had 20Ten distributed exclusively in Europe as a CD supplement for a newspaper. In a similar way he had released his album Planet Earth in the UK in 2007.

Kiran Sharma, Prince's representative at the time, was enthusiastic about the sales strategy of 20Ten and said: It was "the first time in the world that a new album will be delivered free of charge via alternative channels."

The album 20Ten was available on CD from the Daily Mirror , Het Nieuwsblad and the German edition of Rolling Stone . Journalists from these newspapers gave Prince access to his Paisley Park studio in Chanhassen so that they could interview him and report on the album.

As a reason for selling 20Ten as a newspaper supplement, Prince told the Daily Mirror that the Internet was "completely over". He also drew a comparison with the music channel MTV : “The Internet is like MTV. MTV was once totally in and suddenly it was out of date. Anyway, all those computers and digital gadgets are no good. They just fill your head with numbers and that can't do you any good. ”Besides, there won't be any downloads of his new songs either. He sees no reason to sell his music on platforms like the iTunes Store because he doubts the acceptance of the payment system. However, he thinks he's finding new ways to spread his music.

Design of the cover

The unspeakable symbol

The album cover of 20Ten is designed in the form of a Spartan drawing. Within this drawing, Prince is shown as a male model . He wears a brightly colored tunic- like shirt with a stand-up collar that is open to reveal Prince's chest hair. He also wears a necklace with a symbol pendant - the ineffable symbol that the musician used as an artist name from 1993 to 2000. Prince is placed on the left half of the picture and is depicted from head to thigh. In the drawing, Prince has two right arms. On the far left edge of the picture, at the level of his right shoulder, the index finger and thumb of a hand can be seen that is holding a pen and seems to be completing the album cover.

In the background, a kind of desert landscape can be seen in red-orange tones, the contours of a face with a nose, upper lip, lower lip and chin. These contours are reminiscent of the hilly landscape of the woman's body in the cover design of the album Around the World in a Day from 1985.

The Prince symbol can be seen in the middle in the upper area of ​​the cover of 20Ten . The number 2 is in front of the circle of the symbol , so that the number 20 can be read together . The word Ten can be read inside the circle , but it was created as a typographic ligature ; the name Prince can also be read from the word.

The number 2 in front of the circle is designed so that it can also be interpreted as number 7 . If the cover is rotated 180 degrees, the number 7 is to be read as number 6 - the 7.6. is Prince's date of birth. There are also raindrops on the top right of the picture.

On the back of the cover of the 20th is set list of the album of Track 1 Compassion to Track 9 Everybody Loves Me printed in purple-colored script. The Hidden Track Laydown can also be read in oversized font size . The CD is in a cardboard sleeve without a CD booklet.

In December 2010, the employees of the music website Pitchfork Media selected the cover as one of the worst of the year.


The music on the album 20Ten belongs to the genre R&B , electronic dance music , funk , soul , pop music . Some songs sometimes sound similar to earlier compositions by Prince, for example from his album 1999 from 1982. Prince produced the songs of 20Ten in a minimalist way - many of the songs are dominated by synthesizers and the Linn LM-1 drum computer , which he often used for studio recordings Had used music albums in the 1980s. Guitar licks are rarely heard on the 20th .

Trombonist Greg Boyer and saxophonist Maceo Parker in the background

The first piece Compassion is from the genre Electronic dance music and contains among other things a keyboard - Staccato . Maceo Parker , Greg Boyer and Ray Monteiro assist Prince with the song on their wind instruments . Compassion sometimes sounds like Let's Pretend We're Married from the 1999 album . The second song Beginning Endlessly contains catchy synthesizer - riffs and lyrics contributes Prince in a chant -like form.

Future Soul Song is a ballad from the soul genre that is sometimes reminiscent of The Beautiful Ones from 1984. In the singing style, Prince presents himself as a crooner , the refrain consists of Sha-la-la . Sticky Like Glue is from the funk area and contains dominating basslines as well as a guitar played from the same genre . In the song, Prince often changes his voice , a rap passage can also be heard from him.

The fifth track Act of God also comes from the funk genre. In the socially critical lyrics, Prince deals with the global economic crisis from 2007 and the Iraq war ; For example, he sings that US taxpayers are building bombers "supposedly to protect us from Saddam ."

In Lavaux's lyrics , Prince describes the beauty of the Swiss Lavaux wine-growing region and the beauty of the streets of Portugal . Prince's keyboard play is sometimes reminiscent of keyboard passages from the 1999 song .

Walk in Sand is a ballad dominated by Prince's piano playing , which he performs in his typical falsetto singing . The melody and lyrics of the song are simple: "Nothing is more beautiful than walking in the sand with you hand in hand". Prince had already written several ballads similar to Walk in Sand before working on 20Ten . Sea of ​​Everything is a bedroom ballad that Prince also performs primarily in falsetto singing.

Everybody Loves Me is a rock 'n' roll - Stomp with boogie-woogie -Piano- breaks . Among other things, Prince sings in the lyrics: "Tonight I love everyone and everyone loves me". Prince doesn't mean himself, but the self-confident spirit that can make anyone a star on the dance floor . The groove is sometimes reminiscent of All the Critics Love U in New York from the 1999 album .

The hidden track Laydown was the opening song in an earlier version of the album 20Ten and belongs to the R&B genre. The song contains, among other things, a dark and unsettling guitar playing, complex synthesizer lines and a rap performed by Prince in which he describes himself as "Purple Yoda", an allusion to the character Yoda from Star Wars .

Title list and publication

No. song author length
01 Compassion Prince 3:57
02 Beginning Endlessly Prince 5:27
03 Future Soul Song Prince 5:08
04th Sticky like glue Prince 4:46
05 Act of God Prince 3:13
06th Lavaux Prince 3:03
07th Walk in sand Prince 3:29
08th Sea of ​​Everything Prince 3:49
09 Everybody Loves Me Prince 4:00
077 Laydown (Hidden Track) Prince 3:07

The following can be read on the 20Ten CD : “For promotional use only. Not for resale. “( English for only for advertising purposes . Not for resale. ) The song Laydown can only be heard as a hidden track as track # 77. From tracks 10 to 76 there are only pauses of five seconds each. Prince did not release any singles from the album and he did not produce any music videos .

The album 20Ten was only released as a compact disc with 10 songs as a CD with a newspaper. It was first available on July 10, 2010 from the English newspaper Daily Mirror and its Scottish subsidiary Daily Record . On the same day, 20Ten appeared in the Dutch- language daily newspaper Het Nieuwsblad in Belgium and in the subsidiary De Gentenaar . On July 22nd, 2010 the German edition of the music magazine Rolling Stone published the album in its August issue in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. It was also published on the same day by the weekly magazine Courrier international in France.

British publisher Trinity Mirror , publisher of Daily Mirror and Daily Records , sold over 2.5 million CDs from 20Ten . But on July 10, the aforementioned newspapers together sold only 379,000 copies of the album. In 2007, when Prince distributed his album Planet Earth through the British Sunday newspaper Mail on Sunday , over 600,000 copies had been sold. On July 12, 2010, the Daily Mirror decided to include the album 20Ten with anyone who ordered the newspaper online .

In Germany, Austria and Switzerland, the first edition of the August edition of Rolling Stone was almost sold out after just one week. However, the publisher made a new edition available including the album. The Rolling Stone magazine had a circulation of almost 64,000 copies at that time. Instead of the customary 5.50 euros, an edition with the CD cost 6.99 euros.

At the beginning of October 2010 Prince announced a 20th Deluxe Edition , which should include the song Rich Friends . He finally offered Rich Friends as a download on October 14th and 20Ten Deluxe has not been released to this day. On January 6, 2013 Prince released Laydown (Xtended), a maxi single of the song, which is 5:54 minutes long and was also only available as a download.


Setlist from July 5th 2010 in Berlin / Waldbühne
  1. Venus de Milo
  2. Let's go crazy
  3. Delirious
  4. 1999
  5. Little Red Corvette
  6. The Bird
    (written by Prince and Jesse Johnson for The Time in 1984 )
  7. Jungle Love
    (written by Prince and Jesse Johnson for The Time in 1984)
  8. The glamorous life
  9. Crimson and Clover
    (written by Tommy James & the Shondells in 1968 )
  10. Peach
  11. Spanish Castle Magic
    ( written by Jimi Hendrix in 1967 )
  12. When You Were Mine
  13. Hot summer
  14. Nothing Compares 2 U
  15. Purple Rain -Intro
  16. Ol 'Skool Company
  17. Thus Spoke Zarathustra
    ( written by Richard Strauss in 1895 )
  18. Controversy
  19. A Love Bizarre
    ( written by Sheila E. and Prince in 1985 )
  20. I Know You Got Soul
    ( written by Bobby Byrd in 1971 )
  21. Love Rollercoaster (played as an instrumental version)
    ( written by Ohio Players in 1975 )
  22. Sexy dancer
  23. Le Freak
    ( written by Chic in 1977 )
  24. Housequake
  25. Forever in My Life
  26. Act of God
  27. 7th
  28. Guitar
  29. Kiss
  30. Purple Rain
  31. When Will We B Paid?
    ( Written by Randall Stewart for The Staple Singers in 1970 )
  32. Dance (Disco Heat)
    ( written by Sylvester James in 1978 )
All songs are authored by Prince , unless otherwise stated

The 20Ten tour began on July 4, 2010 in Roskilde in Denmark and ended on July 25, 2010 in Nice at Palais Nikaia . The tour took place exclusively in Europe and only included seven concerts. The concerts were attended by a total of 193,500 spectators, with Prince playing four of the seven concerts at music festivals , the audience capacity of which was higher than at his conventional concerts. He performed at the following four music festivals: on July 4th at the Roskilde Festival in Denmark, on July 9th at the Main Square Festival in France, on July 10th at Rock Werchter in Belgium and on July 18th at the Super-Bock-Super Rock festival in Portugal. On the tour, Prince only played the songs Future Soul Song and Act of God once from the album 20Ten . The length of the concert varied between 120 and 150 minutes and Prince's accompanying band The New Power Generation consisted of the following eight members:

Furthermore, Prince went on tour in Europe again from October 18 to November 18, 2010 and again gave seven concerts, which were attended by a total of around 90,000 spectators. This time he did not play at music festivals and Prince did not do any music promotion for the album 20Ten on the tour. Ida Kristine Nielsen made her debut as bassist in The New Power Generation on October 18, 2010 in Bergen (Norway) .


From 1986 onwards, Prince occasionally played an aftershow after the main concert, i.e. another concert after midnight. His aftershows took place in smaller music clubs in front of mostly 300 to 1,500 spectators and Prince did without the lavish stage shows, choreographies and light shows of his main concerts. In addition, he designed the song selection differently and often did without his top ten hits. Some of the aftershows' highlights were guest appearances by well-known musicians.

In 2010 Prince played an aftershow at 5 of the 14 concerts on his two European tours. The first of these took place on July 11, 2010 in Brussels at Viage, where Larry Graham appeared as a guest musician. In addition, Prince played on July 23 in Paris in the New Morning (jazz club) , on July 26 in Cannes in the Palais Club and on October 21, 2010 in Copenhagen in Amager Bio. He gave his last aftershow on November 7, 2010 in Brussels at Viage, this time with Bria Valente .


The reviews of the album 20Ten varied: While journalists from newspapers that delivered the album as a CD-ROM were in part very positive, independent journalists were more reluctant to praise them.

The Daily Mirror was enthusiastic about 20Ten and said it was Prince's best music album in 23 years [1987: Sign "☮" the Times ] and was on a par with Elvis Presley's comeback in 1968. On 20Ten there are the "most soulful", "most spiritual" and "most romantic" songs that Prince has written for years.

Joachim Hentschel of the German edition of the music magazine Rolling Stone praised Prince return on 20th "once and for tight electric funk spirit of the early years back." He brings "dry, groovy party and nodding songs, lip-licking soul ballads, without copying or ingratiating himself." In addition, Hentschel was of the opinion that 20Ten was his "best, most consistent album since the Love Symbol record in 1992."

Ulf Kubanke from the German-language online magazine laut.de was also enthusiastic and wrote about Prince: “Yes, he can still do it! Lord Nelson is both angry and ecstatic. But it never leaves you cold. A quality that he has in common with colleagues like Dylan [sic] or Neil Young . So he continues to oscillate between overstraining and underburdening subjects who are willing to listen. "

Eric Pfeil of the German daily FAZ wrote: “Some things on 20Ten are fantastic, such as the Beginning Endlessly driven by a keyboard riff , a wonderful electro-funk with robot-like harmony vocals. The moment when his funky guitar kicks in at the end is divine. The filthy Act Of God [sic] is great , a pseudo- lo-fi song that sounds almost thrown out and the lyrics of which put American banks and politicians in a sack. In between there are good, decent and dull ballads. The best of them, Future Love Song , is just not what the title promises. " Pfeil highlighted the song Laydown particularly positively and came to the conclusion:" A whole album in this style [ Laydown ], that would have been something. "

The weekly news magazine Focus said: “The new album 20Ten does not contain anything that has not been heard from Prince in a similar way, but it can certainly add one or two hits to the huge oeuvre. Already the prelude Compassion - an electro-radio piece in the style of the early 80s with melodic proximity to the Rocky Horror Picture Show [sic] - is an excellent success. Even at Beginning Endlessly , synthesizer fanfares dominate like almost 30 years ago, before a funk guitar so typical for Prince brings the song to the finish ”. At the end, the Focus wrote: “He 'll be forgiven for the populous , loud-mouthed Everybody Loves Me . Prince is back, also as a magazine insert ”.

Marc Deckert from the national daily Süddeutsche Zeitung sums it up: “Every song on the album, which, apart from a few voices and brass sections, was recorded and produced by Prince all by himself, leans rhythmically or tonally on a Prince classic - not everyone is good, but dropouts are just as much a part of this artist as the big themes of God , funk and (physical) love ”.

Andreas Borcholte from Spiegel Online was disappointed with the album and gave five out of ten possible points: “It seems as if Prince is in a phase of regression , he wants to go back to the times when he was in with Purple Rain , Lovesexy and Around The World A Day [sic] was celebrated as the King of Pop of the cool people. ”The conclusion was:“ 20Ten now finally looks like a hastily compiled flea market from the extensive B-side archive: You find a few things that you used to like , gets nostalgic for a moment , thinks a little. And then you'd better leave it there. The old stuff. "

Stephen Thomas Erlewine from Allmusic was also cautious with praise and gave two and a half stars out of five. He was of the opinion, the overall picture was 20th superficial; Hooklines didn't work, funk jams didn't get going , sensuality stayed on the back burner and the rhythms seemed a bit stiff. ("Everything on 20Ten exists on the surface: hooks don't sink in, funk jams are stuck in low gear, sensuality only simmers, the rhythms are somewhat stiff")

After Prince's death in April 2016, the music journalists Albert Koch and Thomas Weiland from the German music magazine Musikexpress reviewed the album 20Ten and gave it three out of six possible stars. Among other things, they wrote: “He [Prince] could, should have expanded the New Wave influence at the beginning in Compassion and Beginning Endlessly into the main theme for this album. Instead, he continues with the tired Future Soul song . Missed chance ”.


Web links

Individual evidence

  1. a b Thorne (2012), p. 469.
  2. ^ Compassion. In: Princevault.com. May 3, 2018, accessed May 23, 2018 .
  3. Walk In Sand. In: Princevault.com. May 6, 2018, accessed May 23, 2018 .
  4. Sticky Like Glue. In: Princevault.com. May 6, 2018, accessed May 23, 2018 .
  5. November 25th. In: Princevault.com. May 6, 2018, accessed May 23, 2018 .
  6. Everybody Loves Me. In: Princevault.com. May 4, 2018, accessed May 23, 2018 .
  7. Beginning Endlessly. In: Princevault.com. May 3, 2018, accessed May 23, 2018 .
  8. Draper (2016), pp. 190–191.
  9. Draper (2016), p. 190.
  10. a b c d e f g h i Draper (2016), p. 191.
  11. Thorne (2012), p. 466.
  12. Draper (2016), p. 180.
  13. 20Ten CD by Prince, NPG Records, 2010
  14. ^ Ian Cohen: The Worst Album Covers of 2010. In: Pitchfork.com. December 6, 2010, accessed March 21, 2017 .
  15. a b c d e f g h Daniel Koch: Prince: 20th from today with our August issue in stores. In: RollingStone.de. July 22, 2013. Retrieved March 21, 2017 .
  16. Draper (2016), p. 191.
  17. Greenman (2017), p. 197.
  18. 20th. In: Princevault.com. January 7, 2017, accessed March 21, 2017 .
  19. ^ Trinity Mirror plc: Press Release - Daily Mirror and Daily Record to give away new Prince album. (No longer available online.) In: TrinityMirror.com. June 29, 2010, archived from the original on March 22, 2017 ; accessed on March 21, 2017 (English). Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot / www.trinitymirror.com
  20. Prince takes care of a sale on "Rolling Stone". In: Focus.de. July 27, 2010, accessed March 21, 2017 .
  21. dpa / memo: “Rolling Stone” includes new Prince CD. In: Welt.de. June 29, 2010. Retrieved March 21, 2017 .
  22. Thorne (2012), p. 470.
  23. ^ Laydown. In: Princevault.com. March 20, 2017, accessed March 21, 2017 .
  24. Prince 20th Tour. In: Princevault.com. February 27, 2016, accessed March 21, 2017 .
  25. Prince 20Ten Tour - Tour Map. In: Princevault.com. June 19, 2016, accessed March 21, 2017 .
  26. ^ Prince Live 2010 - Tour Map. In: Princevault.com. June 19, 2016, accessed March 21, 2017 .
  27. ^ One-Off Performance July 11, 2010 (am). In: Princevault.com. December 20, 2016, accessed April 20, 2018 .
  28. ^ One-Off Performance November 7, 2010 (am). In: Princevault.com. November 9, 2016, accessed April 20, 2018 .
  29. Draper (2016), p. 191., "most soulful", "most spiritual", "most romantic"
  30. Ulf Kubanke: Prince - 20TEN - The lascivious brutality rocks everything to the ground. In: laut.de. July 23, 2010, accessed March 21, 2017 .
  31. Eric Pfeil: The new album from Prince: 20th: Throw your talent - if you have any. In: FAZ.net. August 12, 2010. Retrieved March 21, 2017 .
  32. Kiosk instead of record store - Prince gives himself away. In: Focus.de. July 21, 2010. Retrieved March 21, 2017 .
  33. Jump up ↑ Marc Deckert: The new album from Prince: A perfect megalomania. In: Süddeutsche.de. July 28, 2010. Retrieved March 21, 2017 .
  34. Andreas Borcholte: Prince - "20Ten". In: Spiegel.de. July 27, 2013, accessed March 21, 2017 .
  35. Stephen Thomas Erlewine: Prince 20Ten. 2017, accessed on March 21, 2017 .
  36. Albert Koch and Thomas Weiland: From the great Prince Special - an overview of all albums. In: Musikexpress.de. May 22, 2016. Retrieved March 21, 2017 .