Lot 4737: Prince's Handwritten Lyrics and Sketch Notebook
14th March 2019
Extraordinary 8.5 x 11 Citadel narrow-ruled notebook with 11 pages containing Prince's handwriting (ranging from a couple words to complete pages, all single-sided), signed on the front cover in ballpoint using a playful pseudonym, "Percy Bagonia, Chicago, Poland." The first page is a handwritten draft by Prince of lyrics for the apparently unreleased "All I Want (Just a Little Love)," beginning: "I don't need no money / All it does is make you want more / I'd only go to some big city / And blow it all on some cheap whore! / Right now, I'm feelin' kinda horny / Sugar, if you would… / I really want you to make love to me / I just bet you're so good." The next page is headed in Prince's hand, "Dearest Barbara," but left blank. The following four pages are in another hand in red ink, and include a break-up note to Prince signed "Nadia" ("Sometimes goodbye does mean forever. I know all along our relationship has been soft & wet…but there have just been too many rumors"), followed by three pages of sketches in the same red ink. On the back of one of these pages in black ink, Prince writes the phone number of "Kim Downsher," and on the opposite page he jots some notes with numbers and times, in addition to coloring in the shoes of one of the characters drawn in red ink. Following two blank pages, Prince writes out a full page of lyrics for an unreleased song, "Just One Night With You," humorously credited, "by Harriet Tubman." The first verse reads: "Just one night with you, / and I know I could face tomorrow. / Just one night with you, / would be the remedy for my sorrow / How I long for you—'ll never know / how I long for you—I long for you." On the next page, Prince writes out lyrics for "I Feel for You," which first appeared on his 1979 self-titled album, here credited, "by Percy Bagonia." The hit begins: "Baby, baby when I look at you, / I get a warm feeling inside. / There's something 'bout the things you do / That keeps me satisfied. / I ain't gonna lie to you, baby… / it's mainly a physical thang / This feelin' that I got for you, baby, / it makes me wanna sing! / I feel for you, I think I love you!" The best-known version of this song was recorded by Chaka Khan in 1984, for which Prince, as a songwriter, won the 1985 Grammy Award for Best R&B Song. On the next page, Prince writes lyrics for an untitled song with the theme of "Am I wrong for loving you," complete with an elaborate sketch at the bottom and tiny drawings in the margins. The lyrics begin: "Am I wrong… / …for wanting to hold you, everytime you're near? / Am I wrong… / …for whispering things, you've always wanted to hear? / Am I crazy… / …just because I think I'd rather die, / than to live alone in desperate need of / your body close to mine." The next page boasts an incredible pencil sketch by Prince, showing a very unusual guitar–human mashup: the fretboard turns into a human head and face in profile, and an electric guitar extends from the back of the head; a detailed, hairy leg juts out from the side of the main guitar body. Prince continues to write in pencil on the following page, noting: "Words to fun by: 'To tap or not to tap / That is the question / Whether 'tis funkier on the three / than the one is to suffer the / slings and arrows of unsyncopated misfortune.' Willyum Shakespere." Below, he writes out several of his pseudonyms: "Percy Bagonia," "Dexter Cunningbowl," "Alfred Horkelsby," and "Seymou." The next page, written out by Prince in ballpoint and headed "Prince," and also signed at the bottom, "Thank you, Prince," concerns his terms for a contract. In full: "Publishing: term 3 years 2 one-year options. Option Periods must be negotiated. 1. $10,000 check will be issued immediately upon signing. 2. If there are in fact two hit singles within the album, an additional $10,000 upon completion of the album will be paid. Publishing company will determine if they are hits. Booking: term 3 years 2 one-year options. 1. Option Periods must be negotiated. 2. A garanteed gross of $250,000 the 1st year, $500,000 the second year. 3. During 1st year a garanteed promotional tour of Europe. Management: Term 3 years 2 one-year options. 1. Option Periods must be negotiated. 2. Management has to see to it that I get everything stated above." On the last page, Prince writes a set list in pencil, most of the songs coming from his second studio album, released in 1979: "Let's Rock, I Wanna Be Your Lover, Bambi, Why You Wanna Treat Me So Bad, When We're Dancing Close and Slow, With You, Still Waiting, It's Gonna Be Lonely, Sexy Dancer, Darling Marie." On the back cover, Prince signs his name in ballpoint, "Prince," and also writes "Patrice" and "Last Waltz." In very good to fine condition, with expected handling wear, and dampstaining to the right edge of each page. Notebook originates from a girlfriend of Prince (who is different from Nadia, another girlfriend who left a breakup note to Prince in the notebook).
Estimate: $30,000 -$50,000
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