With ‘C-Note,’ Prince Takes a Jazzy Trip Through Japan
In 2002, Prince took a tour of Japan, and invited fans along for a special backstage visit. Before his show on Nov. 18, he and his band - which included Madhouse collaborator Eric Leeds - recorded a jazzy instrumental at Nippon Budokan in Tokyo, which would eventually became one of five songs included on the mini-album C-Note.
Each song were recorded during soundchecks on the One Nite Alone ... Tour, and the record took its title came from an anagram of the songs contained on it: "Copenhagen," "Nagoya, "Osaka," "Tokyo" and "Empty Room." Like the three tracks that precede it, "Tokyo" is an instrumental save for Prince's repetition of the title city. The songs, all named for the cities in which they were performed, were first released as separate, exclusive NPG Music Club members-only tracks in late 2002 and early 2003. "Copenhagen" was emailed to European members, while "Nagoya," "Osaka" and Tokyo" were sent to Japanese members. "Empty Room" was soon made available to European members as well.
The full five-song compilation that is C-Note was released in 2004 through the Musicology Store, still as a member-only offering. It was one of three instrumental jazz albums Prince released in short order around that time - including 2003's N.E.W.S and Xpectation.
Hear Prince Perform "Tokyo"
The album was re-released through the Tidal music service in 2015, available only to stream before a download store was opened three months later.