Filed under: Purple Snow
As we have discussed, most recently in the blog post “Punk Break on Funk Tape,” the Twin Cities’ rock and funk factions were never far apart, geographically speaking. Regardless of what side of town you live on, everybody needs guitar strings and drum sticks, and no group can afford a fancy demo, regardless of race, creed, color, or musical orientation.
While talking to Husker Du’s Grant Hart about the cover of Metal Circus, I learned a few cool this things about the still life featured below.
“It was St. Patrick’s Day, 1983. The reason I remember that is because we shot 2 rolls of two-and-a-quarter, but in all but a few shots, somebody with one of those green plastic trumpets that was popular back then would march by—on their way to Robert Street in St. Paul—all geared up and drunk for the St. Patrick’s Day parade.”
But peeling another layer of the Purple onion back, I was anything but shocked to learn that this influential punk LP had trivial but undeniable connections to Minneapolis’s other sound.
“[This scene] was in the Milton Building on 5th and Wacouta Street in downtown St. Paul. It was essentially a warehouse close to the railroad tracks, but a great number of artists had taken up residence there. I was familiar enough with the building that I knew the guy whose office it was. It was a graphic arts design place, a fellow by the name of Dickerson. His son was Dez Dickerson, who was a member of Prince’s original group. The Dickersons are African American and the whole room pretty well reflected that—faux zebra rugs and those kinds of African motifs. A really nice fellow. Your average black businessman at that time—you know it’s like “Who are these freaky white kids who want to do what?” But, you know, his son was wearing a Kamikaze headband on stage playing guitar for Prince, so he probably understood funky behavior and attire.”
Purple Snow: Forecasting the Minneapolis Sound is available for pre-order now. Pre-orders comes with a replica 7-inch of the Twin City Rappers’s 1985 rhyming history lesson, “Twin City Rapp.” Both are available for preview below:
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