Paisley Park

‘Paisley Park is in your heart’

This is a lyric from the song titled Paisley Park on Prince’s Around the World in a Day album.  It’s not one of his most well-known songs but the title was translated by the artist to name his artistic palace in Chanhassen, a suburb of Minneapolis.

Paisley Park is a combination of residence, recording studios, sound stage, video editing and party spot (concerts, DJ’s, etc.) designed by Prince in the late 1980s.  This is a place where he churned out hit after hit from his own recording platforms.  It afforded him the opportunity to create new music and concepts right where he lived.  Simply, come downstairs and walk into a recording studio to lay down some tracks that would one day become a #1 hit.

Paisley Park is a place I have always wanted to visit to experience the place responsible for the ‘soundtrack’ of my life.  I grew up listening to Prince from the very early stages of his career and wanted to ‘walk into the future’ and see Paisley Park first hand.

Wow…what an experience!  I decided to make a visit to Minneapolis and then venture over to Chanhassen to tour Paisley Park.  They have multiple tour formats to select but I decided to reserve my spot for the General Admission (70-minute tour) and was not disappointed.  There were roughly 20 other Prince fans along for my tour timeframe.  We’re talking people from all over the world who decided to make the Paisley Park journey to reconnect with Prince, his music and the place where he created magic.

The tour started with a brief history of his music, why he wanted Paisley Park and what happens there now.  The tour’s most emotional moment for me was when we stepped into the foyer at Paisley Park.  Prince’s ashes are encased under glass overlooking the foyer.  Didn’t expect the ashes to be there but it was a goose bump moment for a lot of us on the tour.

We were provided free time to explore multiple rooms dedicated to specific albums/tours (LoveSexy, 1999, For You, etc.) and his personal office.  The tour guide identified the office was intact just as Prince left it.  Of course, it was a very cool set-up to include video, music and a sitting area to entertain visitors.

The tour then took us directly into Studio A where most of his hits from the 1990s were recorded.  Very cool place to see and experience the sound system and unreleased music that will be coming out soon! Sounds great and you will love the concepts! (LOL).

His numerous awards (Grammys, BET, MTV, etc.) were displayed in hallway cases.  The effect of seeing these awards put a smile on most of our faces as we remembered watching Prince receive these awards on TV over the years.  Fantastic opportunity to actually see history.

Prince’s movies/soundtracks had separate areas at Paisley Park.  The Purple Rain display included the motorcycle from the movie, his iconic purple trench coat and the Grammy awarded for the soundtrack.

Under the Cherry Moon with the black and white theme provided a unique contrast to his other movies.  Graffiti Bridge, Sign ‘O the Times and RAVE were displayed, and all were shot on the sound stage at Paisley Park.  Speaking of the sound stage, our tour took us into the enormous space used by Prince and others for tour preparation, make videos and shoot movies.  Prince allowed other musicians to use this area to help them get ready for national tour dates.

The tour ended in the New Power Generation (NPG) club which is still used to host dance parties for Prince fans.  This area was used by Prince to host fans and sometimes play live shows for the few lucky folks in attendance.  It was noted Prince normally didn’t start playing until 2 am in the morning so you would have to be an extreme night owl to catch one of these impromptu shows.

Cameras are not allowed at Paisley Park so the memories from this experience must be lived and not ‘streamed’ out.  I believe this enhanced the overall experience for me.

Very happy my walk into the future led me to Paisley Park!

Where have you always wanted to go but never made the time?  How can you leverage a trip to help you decide to walk into the future?

Paisley park outside

Paisley Park inside2

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Spin Class

When’s the last time you took a spin class?  Well, decided to get back in the saddle today and tried spinning again.  Wanted to enhance my current cardio routine with something challenging without having to go out and fight the Florida heat and humidity summer brings.  Found a local church with a Fitness Ministry where they offer multiple class formats and times to reach a larger population.

The church allows registered participants to attend the first class for free.  This was a bonus as I have been searching for additional ways to supplement my cardio and half marathon training program.  Thought spin would be a fun and challenging way to burn more calories and interact (network) with others in the community.

Our instructor was very nice and made everyone feel welcome.  She had to spend a little extra time with me to get my bike set-up since I haven’t been on a spin bike in about 4 years.  Once we got my seat and handle bar height levels corrected, the fun began.  Several warm up routines got us physically and mentally prepared for a hard, fun and energizing 45-minute ride.   The instructor made a point to let us all know the ride would be at our individual pace.  We were coached to take breaks, adjust pedal tension and get water whenever needed.  This made the class an enjoyable experience for me.  There were several times I didn’t know if I could make it over the next ‘hill’ but our instructor kept me moving forward and I was able to complete the entire 45-minute circuit.  Not bad for my first time back in the saddle after a 4-year layoff.

Looking forward to getting back and taking my next class.  Thinking about buying a package of classes since I know they will get used especially over the hot summer months.

An extra benefit of spin class was the mind cleaning aspects the ride had.  I was able to completely focus on riding my bike over the next hill.  The breathing techniques we utilized helped free my mind and created a unique experience for me.  I know it was just a spin class, but the enjoyment of the ride was eye opening and has me looking forward to my next visit.

This Fitness Ministry is an excellent way to give back and help the community!  Well done!

What have you always wanted to try or do but never make the time?  When will you free your mind with a ‘spin’ class?

What’s your Why?

Had a fascinating text message conversation with one of my favorite people and friend.  She identifies on her LinkedIn profile as a ‘Destiny Activator’.  This means she is very adept helping people discover their true calling in life or more specifically their ‘Why’.

She was working on a keynote speech for a large conference and decided to include a little about me in her speech.  She was the first person I mentioned the concept ‘Walk into the Future’ to and she wanted to gauge my progress on the project.

She asked me the following questions:

  • What is your why? The purpose why you show up every day for what you do
  • How does your purpose keep you going during the difficult seasons?

It took me a little time to fully understand her questions and then formulate a response she could use in her keynote address.

My ‘why’ is to impact people in a positive way to leave them better than when I found them.  This includes normal conversations, consulting sessions, mentoring opportunities or just when they have questions or concerns.  Making a positive difference has always been my mantra and now I can say this is my purpose why I show up every day for what I do.

I review who I have helped in the past and see them giving back to someone else.  This is how my purpose keeps me moving forward during the difficult seasons.  I view people I have helped as ‘roots or branches’ to my tree of life.

Don’t think I would have formulated this concept without my friend asking me these pointed questions.  I am happy she asked me, and very excited she wanted to highlight me during her keynote address.  Looks like my ‘why’ is still going strong!

What is your why?  How does your purpose keep you going during the difficult seasons?

Keynote Speech 2018 FloridaACE (2)

Motivation

What motivates you?

I would guess things quite different from what motivates me

The drive I seek comes from things I have seen

Some good, some bad

Some fair, some foul

The secret here is to use them all

Never let the opinion of others sway your desire

To reach the pinnacle you aspire

Continue to work to meet and exceed your goals

Remind the doubters you are in control

Dreams will become reality soon enough

Got to keep working because life can be rough

Find your motivation, live your dreams

A motivated life is a wonderful sight to be seen

What motivates/inspires you?  How can you leverage this daily to walk into the future?

Who can you inspire today to do great things?  Reach out and share this power to make the world better!

Why Walk into the Future?

Walk into the Future signifies the ability to understand tomorrow is coming and you should not be afraid to move forward.  The way you decide to ‘walk’ into the future will be your own unique journey.  Chart your course and then work to navigate your way towards the life goals you decide to create.  Use your time to explore and find what makes you happy on this new journey.  Examples include:

  • Take that vacation you have been putting off
  • Decide to create your own blog to document your walk into the future
  • Make time for family and friends (again)
  • Discover new talents you may have or wanted to explore
  • Live life the way you want to

The specifics of these examples can be worked out in more detail but leverage this concept to guide your journey.

My first ‘walk’ was to head down to Negril, Jamaica to enjoy the food, sun and culture.  This experience was a way to unwind and recharge my mental focus.  I was able to catch up on some long overdue reading for personal enjoyment.  The ability to consume works by my favorite authors brings me a lot of joy, so this was an added benefit of walking into the future via my trip to Negril.  Time for naps was readily available and enjoyed during this phase as well.  What’s a trip to Negril, Jamaica without a trip to Rick’s Café to watch people (tourists and locals) take turns cliff diving.  The reggae is awesome, and the sunsets are great at Rick’s Café.  Being there enjoying the irie vibe is a tremendous way to unwind and enjoy the island.

This recharge will be used to launch several 2018 projects to bring me closer to who I want to be (professional and personal) and to bring a new level of good to my community.  The charge is to make a difference daily!

Enjoy the process!  Walk—don’t run!