Tag Archives: Prince

Exploring The Unreleased Music In Prince’s Vault

It’s been five years since Prince died, but his estate continues to churn out new music from the prolific artist. 

Jon Wertheim reports on the unreleased songs – 8,000 by one estimate – locked away in Prince’s vault and the newly unlocked album, “Welcome 2 America”

Watch the 60 Minutes piece below.

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Prince Estate To Release Rare ‘Welcome 2 America’ Album, Featuring Bob Dylan And Janet Jackson Covers

On July 30, the Prince Estate and Sony’s Legacy Recordings will release Prince’s “Welcome 2 America” album, which was recorded in 2010 but never released.  

The album is a powerful creative statement that documents Prince’s concerns, hopes, and visions for a shifting society, presciently foreshadowing an era of political division, disinformation, and a renewed fight for racial justice. 

60 Minutes correspondent Jon Wertheim got a preview of the album as well as the story behind it for a report airing this Sunday on CBS; you can hear the title track here.

Shortly after completing the “Welcome 2 America” album, Prince embarked on a tour of the same name that included multiple performances in several U.S. cities, capped off by the historic “21 Nite Stand” at The Forum in Inglewood, California. 

 

The Deluxe Edition of “Welcome 2 America” includes the complete studio vault album on both CD and black vinyl (accompanied with a hi-res digital download) plus a never-before-released full concert video of Prince’s April 28, 2011 show at The Forum. All vinyl editions will have music on three sides with a collectible etching on the fourth side. In addition, there will be two special color variant vinyl editions of the album – gold vinyl available exclusively from the official Prince store and clear vinyl from Target.

As a companion collector single, fans have the opportunity to pre-order a numbered limited-edition gold-colored 7” vinyl exclusively from the official Prince Store. The 7” includes the studio version of “Welcome 2 America,” accompanied by a previously unreleased live version of the song recorded on May 14, 2011 at The Forum. The live version of “Welcome 2 America” is performed in a medley with the Prince composition “Dreamer,” first released on 2009’s “Lotusflow3r.”

The live concert video features Prince performing with his 2011-era lineup of the New Power Generation, including Shelby J., Liv Warfield, Elisa Fiorillo, and Morris Hayes, additional keyboardists Renato Neto and Cassandra O’Neal, bassist Ida Nielsen, drummer John Blackwell, and dancers Maya and Nandy McClean (The Twinz).

The performance features covers of Bob Dylan’s “Make You Feel My Love” and Roxy Music’s “More Than This” alongside Prince favorites including “17 Days,” “Controversy,” “1999,” and “Purple Rain.”

The Deluxe Edition of Welcome 2 America will be presented as a luxe gold-foil package designed by GRAMMY-nominated artist Mathieu Bitton and GRAMMY-nominated creative director and Prince associate Trevor Guy, complete with a 12”x12” 32-page companion book and embossed vellum envelope containing exclusive Welcome 2 America era ephemera (photographic art print, 23”x36” poster, replica setlist, ticket, VIP invitation and backstage passes).t, 23”x36” poster, replica setlist, ticket, VIP invitation and backstage passes).

Prince – Welcome 2 America Track Listing:

1. Welcome 2 America
2. Running Game (Son of a Slave Master)
3. Born 2 Die
4. 1000 Light Years From Here
5. Hot Summer
6. Stand Up and B Strong *
7. Check The Record
8. Same Page, Different Book
9. When She Comes
10. 1010 (Rin Tin Tin)
11. Yes
12. One Day We Will All B Free

Pre-order HERE.

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Prince‘s Remastered Album Sign O’ The Times To Be Reissued On September 25

Prince‘s 1987 album Sign O’ The Times will be reissued by Warner Records in September and amongst the formats are two enormous CD and vinyl super deluxe editions that offer a massive 63 previously unreleased tracks, including 45 studio ‘vault’ tracks. 

The Super Deluxe Edition Box Set is comprised of the following:

CD1 or LP 1- Sign O’ The Times (Remastered)
CD2 or LP 2 – Sign O’ The Times (Remastered)
CD3 or LP 3 & 4 – Singles Mixes / Edits / B-Sides (Remastered)
CD4 or LP 5 & 6 – Vault Tracks (Unreleased)
CD5 or LP 7 & 8 – Vault Tracks (Unreleased)
CD6 or LP 9 & 10 – Vault Tracks (Unreleased)
CD8 or 9 / LPs 11-13 – Live In Utrecht June 20th 1987 (Unreleased)
DVD – Live at Paisley Park December 31st 1987 (Unreleased Sign O’ The Times show ft Miles Davis)

The 45 vault tracks are full of unreleased gems including a 1979 version of ‘I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man‘, two unreleased versions of ‘Strange Relationship‘ (including a Shep Pettibone club remix!), alternate versions of ‘The Ballad of Dorothy Parker‘ and ‘Forever in My Life‘ and a fantastic amount of songs that Prince simply never issued, many of which were destined for three aborted albums conceived in 1986:  The Dream Factory, Camille and Crystal Ball. These songs include ‘Rebirth of the Flesh‘, two completely different versions of ‘Witness 4 the Prosecution‘ and ‘Wonderful Day‘ (again two versions, one of which is a 12-inch remix).

It’s an embarrassment of riches and of course as well as all this unreleased material, the super deluxe editions contain a CD (or two LPs) of all the commercially released seven-inch edits, 12-inch remixes, B-sides, dub mixes and more. Like the album itself these have all been remastered by Bernie Grundman.

The box sets also deliver an entire previously unreleased audio recording of Prince’s Sign O’ The Times tour performance in Utrecht from 20 June 1987 and a DVD (NTSC, region free) with a complete previously unreleased recording of Prince’s benefit performance at Paisley Park, 31 December 1987 (featuring Prince’s only on-stage collaboration with Miles Davis).

Both vinyl and CD boxes are presented in a 12″ x 12″ sets and come with a 120-page hardcover book featuring brand new liner notes from various parties including Lenny Kravitz (who provides a foreword), audio engineer Susan Rogers, Dave Chappelle and Minneapolis music scene commentator Andrea Swensson. There are also detailed notes on the vault tracks by Prince scholar Duane Tudahl and the book also includes previously unseen photos and Prince’s handwritten lyrics.

As well as the two big boxes, 3CD and 4LP packages offer remastered album alongside the single mixes, edits and B-sides while the album-only editions come on limited 2LP peach-coloured vinyl and 2CD. All formats except 2CD and 2LP are ONE TIME ONLY pressings. Once the initial run sells out that’s it! Once the 2LP peach vinyl is gone, it will be replaced with a black vinyl version. Fans will be well aware that the 1999 super deluxe editions are now out of print less than a year after release. The vinyl sets will come with a download code!

Additionally, a special seven-inch singles box set on peach vinyl, with some vault tracks included, is limited to 1987 units and is exclusive to the Prince store and Third Man Records. Sign O’ The Times is  reissued on 25 September 2020 by Warner Music.

Pre-order HERE.

Track Listings:

CD1 / LP1: Remastered Album (Disc 1)

1 Sign O’ The Times
2 Play In The Sunshine
3 Housequake
4 The Ballad Of Dorothy Parker
5 It
6 Starfish And Coffee
7 Slow Love
8 Hot Thing
9 Forever In My Life

CD2 / LP2: Remastered Album (Disc 2)

1 U Got The Look
2 If I Was Your Girlfriend
3 Strange Relationship
4 I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man
5 The Cross
6 It’s Gonna Be A Beautiful Night
7 Adore

CD3 / LP3&4: Single Mixes & Edits

1 Sign O’ The Times (7” single edit)
2 La, La, La, He, He, Hee (7” single edit)
3 La, La, La, He, He, Hee (Highly Explosive) (12” version)
4 If I Was Your Girlfriend (7” single edit)
5 Shockadelica (“If I Was Your Girlfriend” B-side)
6 Shockadelica (12” long version)
7 U Got the Look (Long Look) (12” edit)
8 Housequake (7” edit)
9 Housequake (7 Minutes MoQuake) (12” edit)
10 I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man (Fade 7” edit)
11 Hot Thing (7” single edit)
12 Hot Thing (Extended Remix)
13 Hot Thing (Dub Version)

CD4 / LP5&6: Vault, Part 1

1 I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man (1979 version)
2 Teacher, Teacher (1985 version)
3 All My Dreams
4 Can I Play With U? (featuring Miles Davis)
5 Wonderful Day (original version)
6 Strange Relationship (original version)
7 Visions
8 The Ballad Of Dorothy Parker (with horns)
9 Witness 4 The Prosecution (version 1)
10 Power Fantastic (live in studio)
11 And That Says What?
12 Love And Sex
13 A Place In Heaven (Prince vocal)
14 Colors
15 Crystal Ball (7” mix)
16 Big Tall Wall (version 1)
17 Nevaeh Ni Ecalp A
18 In A Large Room With No Light

All tracks previously unreleased

CD5 / LP7&8: Vault, Part 2

1 Train
2 It Ain’t Over ‘Til The Fat Lady Sings
3 Eggplant (Prince vocal)
4 Everybody Want What They Don’t Got
5 Blanche
6 Soul Psychodelicide
7 The Ball
8 Adonis And Bathsheba
9 Forever In My Life (early vocal studio run-through)
10 Crucial (alternate lyrics)
11 The Cocoa Boys
12 When The Dawn Of The Morning Comes
13 Witness 4 The Prosecution (version 2)
14 It Be’s Like That Sometimes

All tracks previously unreleased

CD6 / LP9&10: Vault, Part 3

1 Emotional Pump
2 Rebirth Of The Flesh (with original outro)
3 Cosmic Day
4 Walkin’ In Glory
5 Wally
6 I Need A Man
7 Promise To Be True
8 Jealous Girl (version 2)
9 There’s Something I Like About Being Your Fool
10 Big Tall Wall (version 2)
11 A Place In Heaven (Lisa vocal)
12 Wonderful Day (12” mix)
13 Strange Relationship (1987 Shep Pettibone Club Mix)

All tracks previously unreleased

CD7&8 / LP11-13: Live In Utrecht – June 20, 1987

1 Intro/Sign O’ The Times
2 Play In The Sunshine
3 Little Red Corvette
4 Housequake
5 Girls & Boys
6 Slow Love
7 Take The “A” Train/Pacemaker/I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man
8 Hot Thing
9 Four
10 If I Was Your Girlfriend
11 Let’s Go Crazy
12 When Doves Cry
13 Purple Rain
14 1999
15 Forever In My Life
16 Kiss
17 The Cross
18 It’s Gonna Be A Beautiful Night

All tracks previously unreleased

DVD: Live At Paisley Park – December 31, 1987

1 Sign O’ The Times
2 Play In The Sunshine
3 Little Red Corvette
4 Erotic City
5 Housequake
6 Slow Love
7 Do Me, Baby
8 Adore
9 I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man
10 What’s Your Name Jam
11 Let’s Pretend We’re Married
12 Delirious
13 Jack U Off
14 Drum Solo
15 Twelve
16 Hot Thing
17 If I Was Your Girlfriend
18 Let’s Go Crazy
19 When Doves Cry
20 Purple Rain
21 1999
22 U Got The Look
23 It’s Gonna Be A Beautiful Night Medley (featuring Miles Davis)

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Prince’s Prolific Career Celebrated With “Let’s Go Crazy: The GRAMMY Salute to Prince”

Just two days after the 62nd Annual GRAMMY Awards, the Recording Academy, AEG Ehrlich Ventures and CBS will celebrate the unparalleled career of 38-time GRAMMY nominee and seven-time GRAMMY winner Prince by presenting “Let’s Go Crazy: The GRAMMY Salute to Prince.” The live concert taping will be held Tuesday, Jan. 28 at 7:30 p.m. PT at the Los Angeles Convention Center. The special will be broadcast later in 2020 on the CBS Television Network. Tickets are on sale now and available for purchase HERE. 

The special will feature a lineup of all-star artists paying tribute to Prince’s unprecedented influence on music, including GRAMMY Award-winning artists Beck, Common, Gary Clark Jr., Earth, Wind & Fire, Foo Fighters, H.E.R., Juanes, Alicia Keys, John Legend, Coldplay’s Chris Martin, Mavis Staples, St. Vincent, and Usher; and singer/songwriter Susanna Hoffs. Plus, a historic joint performance by several of Prince’s most celebrated musical friends and collaborators, including GRAMMY Award-winning band the Revolution, past GRAMMY Award nominee Sheila E., and Prince-formed funk band Morris Day And The Time. Additional performers will be announced in the coming weeks. 

Prince’s start in music broke grounds by successfully negotiating with Warner Bros. Records to not only let him produce his 1978 debut album, For You, but to play all 27 instruments featured on the album. In 1984, Prince achieved international fame with the release of his album and film, Purple Rain. He has more than 40 RIAA certifications, ranging from platinum to diamond. His catalog includes 19 Top 10 singles and five No. 1 hits, including the GRAMMY-winning “Kiss,” as well as five chart-topping albums, including the GRAMMY-winning Purple Rain. Prince has garnered seven GRAMMY Awards, and 38 GRAMMY nominations, and he was presented with the Academy’s President’s Merit Award in 1985. In 2004, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and received the Icon Award at the 2013 Billboard Awards. Releasing nearly 40 studio albums, Prince has solidified his mark as one of the most influential artists of all time. 

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Pages From Prince’s Life

Begun just months before his death in 2016, a memoir by the legendary singer-songwriter Prince is now being published as “The Beautiful Ones.” Jamie Yuccas from CBS This Morning reports on how the manuscript by Prince Rogers Nelson came to light, and talks with editor Dan Piepenbring, who helped Prince tell his story, including how the people in Prince’s life made him the artist he was. 

Yuccas also talks with representatives of Prince’s estate about the vault of previously-unreleased music that is now being made public.

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Prince 1999 Remastered Edition To Be Released On November 29

On November 29th the Prince Estate, in partnership with Warner Records, will reissue Prince’s landmark album 1999, remastered for the very first time, along with 35 previously unreleased tracks from Prince’s legendary vault.

Considered one of the most iconic and influential double albums in rock history, Prince 1999 was released at a major turning point in the Prince’s career. After years of struggling to break out of the R&B charts, he scored major crossover hits with “Little Red Corvette” and “1999.” The success helped Prince to introduce his iconic Minneapolis Sound to the world: a revolutionary blend of rock, funk, R&B and new wave pop that shattered barriers in the industry.

The songs on 1999 were just a small sampling of the work pouring out of Prince in this intensely prolific period. In addition to his own material, he was also working up tracks to give to his protégés Vanity 6 and The Time, and storing countless unreleased songs in his vault.

Many of those unreleased tracks are included in the Super Deluxe Edition of the 1999 reissue, and on November 29 they will be heard by the public for the very first time.

“I didn’t want to do a double album, but I just kept writing,” Prince told Rolling Stone in 1982. “I always compare songwriting to a girl walking in the door. You don’t know what she’s going to look like, but all of a sudden she’s there.”

In addition to the remastered album and studio tracks from the vault, the Super Deluxe Edition includes two complete live performances from the 1999 Tour: an audio recording captured on 11/30/82 in Detroit; and a video recording from 12/29/82 in Houston, presented on DVD.

In the liner notes for the Super Deluxe Edition, Rolling Stone critic David Fricke calls the 1999 reissue “an unprecedented immersion in the frenetic momentum and private working world of Prince in 1981 and 1982.”

The Super Deluxe Edition features Prince’s never-before-seen handwritten lyrics from the era, tape reels from the legendary vault, and rare photography from Allen Beaulieu, plus liner notes by longtime Rolling Stone critic David Fricke, revered Guns N’ Roses bassist and author Duff McKagan, and Prince scholars Andrea Swensson and Duane Tudahl.

The 1999 reissue will be available in Super Deluxe and Deluxe Editions, and as a stand-alone remastered album. It will be issued on LP, CD, and digital formats on November 29.

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Prince Estate to Release 15-Track ‘Originals’ Album 

On Prince’s birthday, June 7, the late artist’s estate, in partnership with Warner Bros. Records and Tidal, will release “Originals,” a 15-track album featuring 14 previously unreleased recordings by Prince of such songs. The tracks were selected collaboratively by Troy Carter, on behalf of The Prince Estate, and Jay-Z.

Starting June 7, “Originals” will stream exclusively on Tidal for 14 days.

On June 21, Warner Bros. will release the recordings, sourced directly from Prince’s archive of “Vault” recordings, via all download and streaming partners and physically on CD, while 180 gram 2LP and limited edition Deluxe CD+2LP formats will follow on July 19th.

Prince was a monumentally prolific artist and by the mid-1980s, in addition to releasing nine of his most commercially successful albums, he also wrote and recorded many dozens of songs for proteges The Time, Vanity 6, Sheila E., Apollonia 6, Jill Jones, the Family, and Mazarati. Often, Prince’s original demo recordings would be used as master takes on their albums, with only minor alterations to the instrumentation and a replacement of the vocal tracks. Other times, artists would rely on his demos to guide them through their own recording process, with Prince’s initial take informing their final version of his song.

“Originals” reveals the origins of these songs — many of which were substantial hits — along with deeper album cuts such as Vanity 6’s “Make-Up,” Jill Jones’s “Baby, You’re a Trip,” and Kenny Rogers’ “You’re My Love.” The only previously released song is Prince’s original 1984 version of “Nothing Compares 2 U,” which was released in 2018 as a standalone single (and as a stellar live duet with Rosie Gaines in 1993). The song was originally released in 1985 by The Family, and made into an unforgettable No. 1 single by Sinead O’Connor five years later.

Track Listing:

1. Sex Shooter first released by Apollonia 6
2. Jungle Love first released by The Time
3. Manic Monday first released by The Bangles
4. Noon Rendezvous first released by Sheila E.
5. Make-Up first released by Vanity 6
6. 100 MPH first released by Mazarati
7. You’re My Love first released by Kenny Rogers
8. Holly Rock first released by Sheila E.
9. Baby, You’re a Trip first released by Jill Jones:
10. The Glamorous Life first released by Sheila E.
11. Gigolos Get Lonely Too first released by The Time
12. Love… Thy Will Be Done first released by Martika
13. Dear Michaelangelo first released by Sheila E.
14. Wouldn’t You Love to Love Me? first released by Taja Sevelle
15. Nothing Compares 2 U first released by The Family

Pre-order the album HERE.

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Prince Memoir The Beautiful Ones Coming This Fall

From Prince himself comes the brilliant coming-of-age-and-into-superstardom story of one of the greatest artists of all time—featuring never-before-seen photos, original scrapbooks and lyric sheets, and the exquisite memoir he began writing before his tragic death. 

Prince was a musical genius, one of the most talented, beloved, accomplished, popular, and acclaimed musicians in history. He was also a startlingly original visionary with an imagination deep enough to whip up whole worlds, from the sexy, gritty funk paradise of “Uptown” to the mythical landscape of Purple Rain to the psychedelia of “Paisley Park.” But his most ambitious creative act was turning Prince Rogers Nelson, born in Minnesota, into Prince, the greatest pop star of his era. 

The Beautiful Ones is the story of how Prince became Prince—a first-person account of a kid absorbing the world around him and then creating a persona, an artistic vision, and a life, before the hits and fame that would come to define him. The book is told in four parts. The first is composed of the memoir he was writing before his tragic death, pages that brings us into Prince’s childhood world through his own lyrical prose. The second part takes us into Prince’s early years as a musician, before his first album released, through a scrapbook of Prince’s writing and photos. The third section shows us Prince’s evolution through candid images that take us up to the cusp of his greatest achievement, which we see in the book’s fourth section: his original handwritten treatment for Purple Rain—the final stage in Prince’s self-creation, as he retells the autobiography we’ve seen in the first three parts as a heroic journey.

The book is framed by editor Dan Piepenbring’s riveting and moving introduction about his short but profound collaboration with Prince in his final months—a time when Prince was thinking deeply about how to reveal more of himself and his ideas to the world, while retaining the mystery and mystique he’d so carefully cultivated—and annotations that provide context to each of the book’s images. 

This work is not just a tribute to Prince, but an original and energizing literary work, full of Prince’s ideas and vision, his voice and image, his undying gift to the world.

The 288 page hardcover will be published on October 29, 2019 and you can pre-order the book HERE.

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Paisley Park Announces Performers & Special Guests Joining CELEBRATION 2019

Prince’s Paisley Park in Chanhassen, Minnesota, has announced programming details for its annual four-day special event, CELEBRATION, honoring the unique life and legacy of the prodigiously talented cultural icon Prince Rogers Nelson. Taking place between April 25-28 at Prince’s historic home and recording sanctuary outside Minneapolis, the event will welcome fans from around the world into an inspired environment of live music, concert screenings, panel discussions and special presentations highlighting Prince’s tremendous talent, influence and importance as a composer, musician, producer, live performer and filmmaker.

Musical guests set to perform at Paisley Park during CELEBRATION 2019 include internationally acclaimed musician, guitarist and original member of The Time, Jesse Johnson; Prince’s iconic group The Revolution, featuring Bobby Z, Lisa Coleman, Wendy Melvoin and Matt Fink; and Funk Soldiers, a fifteen-piece supergroup of New Power Generation and Paisley Park musical alumni.

As an extension of CELEBRATION 2019, Paisley Park will again be presenting an exclusive off-site concert event titled PRINCE: In Concert on the Big Screen, to be held Friday, April 26, at 8pm at The Armory in Minneapolis. Attendance to this event will be included in the CELEBRATION 2019 ticket. The concert will feature newly remastered and never-before-released audio and video of Prince accompanied live on The Armory stage by an all-star ensemble of musicians who performed alongside the icon throughout his storied career. The live concert experience will showcase Prince in his inimitable sound and style, highlighting the incendiary energy he brought to each performance. CELEBRATION 2019 VIP ticket holders will have the opportunity to attend an exclusive Dance Party at The Armory following the conclusion of the live concert Friday evening, hosted by DJ Kiss, who Prince often invited to DJ his own private parties around the world and special events at Paisley Park.

In addition to featured musical guests, Paisley Park has announced a broad list of special guest speakers who will take part in exclusive panel discussions at CELEBRATION 2019, including keynote conversations with Prince’s longtime manager Bob Cavallo; Prince’s personal photographer and creative collaborator, Jeff Katz, who worked closely with Prince through iconic eras, namely Parade, Lovesexy, Sign O’ The Times and Batman; and award winning singer-songwriter Ingrid Chavez who will join producer Craig Rice, rapper TC Ellis and visual artist Steve Parke, who were all instrumental in the Graffiti Bridge film and accompanying soundtrack. Overall the list of contributors this year includes collaborators and friends spanning five decades in Prince’s life.

CELEBRATION 2019 is poised to connect with even more of the passionate and global Prince fan community. Individual General Admission and VIP tickets to the 4-day CELEBRATION 2019 event are available now via the official Paisley Park website at OfficialPaisleyPark.com. Both GA and VIP tickets include entry to PRINCE: In Concert on the Big Screen, with prime and premiere seating assigned respectively to each ticket type. Individual tickets to PRINCE: In Concert on the Big Screen will be available February 8th via the Armory website at armorymn.com.

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Ana DuVernay To Direct Prince Documentary For Netflix

Filmmaker Ana DuVernay (Selma, A Wrinkle in Time) will direct a documentary about the late musician Prince. The as-yet-untitled documentary, which began shooting early this year, will be available to stream on Netflix.

“Prince was a genius and a joy and a jolt to the senses. He was like no other,” DuVernay shared. “He shattered every preconceived notion, smashed every boundary, shared everything in his heart through his music. The only way I know how to make this film is with love. And with great care. I’m honored to do so and grateful for the opportunity entrusted to me by the estate.”

Prince’s estate selected DuVernay specifically to helm the project, though Prince himself had reached out to her about collaborating on a project prior to his death in April of 2016. As part of the project, the director has full access to Prince’s estate, included his vast library of unreleased material.

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