Prince has always been one to move with the trends, often making them long before the rest of the world has caught on. Therefore, his recent revelation that he may not own a cell phone, one of the most iconic and ubiquitous technological developments the modern world has created, left us, well, slightly baffled.
When asked if he is one of the growing number of iPhone owners, the singer laughed. “Are you serious? Hell no.”
Prince’s aversion to the cell phone doesn’t stop there however, as journalist Vanessa Grigoriadis, writing for V Magazine discovered when she attended one of his recent shows before meeting the man himself. She writes that when she enters the venue “a security guard says, “No cameras, no cellphones—don’t even take them out of your pocket. Tonight, we’re not asking, we’re just escorting… If we see you with your phone out, we’re not going to ask what you’re doing—you’re just gone.”
Bizarre as it seems in today’s society, the singer’s instruction to his security team is actually extremely logical. Prince is famously a man of mystery, being both private and unavailable. He eschews the majority of social media, keeping a tight rein on his image as projected to the outside world. If disallowing phones into his concerts is a protective measure in line with this, disregarding the cell phone for himself works in much the same way; keeping the outside world at bay to retain the purity of his image and influence within his own life.
In the exclusive interview given to Grigoriadis for V Magazine, the star discussed how little time he has for communication in general, noting that he speaks with few outside of his team. “This organization is different than most, in the sense that we don’t take directions from the outside world.”
Grigoriadis writes: “He talks about what it would be like if instead of the sun giving of energy, energy was trying to exert its force on the sun. That wouldn’t make a lot of sense. It would be, he says, like ‘meteors hitting a planet!’ What makes much more sense is ‘a sun pulling everything around on its own axis, with information. The sun is information. I have to be quiet to make what I make, do what I do.’”
A world without the pressure of outside influence and only our own ideas and creativity to worry about? Supddenly the decision to ignore the smartphone trend makes more sense. Still, we can’t help but feel we’d miss it.
Is it time to live like Prince and “Party Like It’s 1999” – a time before the cell phone took over the world?