Earlier this year Denise Matthews, age 57, died of renal failure. She was a recovering drug addict, and at the time of her death she was crowdfunding for a kidney transplant. Many previous years of drug misuse had caused renal failure.
Matthews is likely better known to you as musician Vanity. Though Vanity’s death was fleetingly mentioned in Western media, it was largely ignored.
Matthews was an ex-girlfriend and protegé of musician Prince Rogers Nelson, whose death, unlike that of his ex, was widely reported and cause quite a stir.
He only actually needed one name; PRINCE!
Matthews was a part of the music group Vanity 6. Following minor success as Vanity in 1981 came; drug addiction, a tumultuous relationship with Motley Crue bassist Nikki Sixx, which furthered the drug dependence, and after close calls with death, conversion to Evangelism.
Is it quickly becoming more and more evident that getting religion ain’t gonna help you?
Only 2 months after Vanity died on February 15th 2016; April 21st 2016 saw the discovery of Princes dead body, in an elevator at his home in Minnesota, USA.
The Great Purple one was a Jehovah’s Witness since 1999.
He too was 57.
Today Prince would have been 58.
Headbangerwoman didn’t want to report on the death of Prince while there were rumors abound, preferring to wait until an official statement on cause of death was released. Now a statement has been released, it would appear that an accidental fentanyl overdose was in fact the cause of this early demise.
SO, here we have two people connected by music, beauty, fame and talent. Also connected by religion and drugs. Is this just the worlds cruel play on irony, or just very unfortunate circumstances?
The deaths of the two really do go to show that no matter how succesful you are, how great you look, how much money you have (or don’t in the case of Vanity) how on point and devoted you are, or want to be… Sometimes nothing will save you if addiction takes a hold.
And let’s get this straight. People who are addicted are not generally bad or awful people. Addiction changes the behaviour of a person. Then circumstances change. People become dependant and so the drug becomes the centre of their world. It’s a nasty horrible cycle, and one which sadly, many fail to fight successfully.
Fentanyl is known to be 10 times stronger than heroin. It is a drug that gives short-term relief of pain really well, but it is also known that the dose will become tolerated quickly, requiring an increased dosage soon after being prescribed. Addiction is quick.
Prince was so immensely talented. He could play any instrument he picked up, and effortlessly. He had an astounding voice. Along with his own hits, which include Purple Rain, Cream, When Doves Cry, I would die 4 U and Let’s Go Crazy, he wrote music for other artists, including Chaka Khan, The Bangles, Alicia Keys, Cyndi Lauper and Madonna. He was an actor and an activist. He chose (though not too humbly, his home Paisley Park is immense) to live and work in his native Minneapolis and he never succumbed to the bright lights of Hollywood or artistic climes of New York, like many of his contemporaries. He was flamboyant on stage and yet shy and guarded in his private life. Like many before him, it would seem that he just happened to be a victim of circumstance, availability and possibly greed.
There have been reports that Prince had been suffering with long-term chronic pain issues. If this is the case, it would seem that the people he chose to manage that pain took a quick, easy (perhaps beneficial to their pocket books) yet deadly option in treating him.
No one will ever really know what happened to Prince. Suffice to say, those who were close to him are fiercely protective and will doubtless remain so. Those that wish to, will endlessly speculate and gossip. But that is not the way we do things here.
Prince was, in the eyes of Headbangerwoman; a superb musician and an immensely talented artist. His private life really should be of no concern, and while his death is a very huge loss for the music community, we should remember how brilliant was this man. We will continue to revel in his creativity and his humanity, admire his attempts at being the best person he could be, and not wallow in his (possible)addiction, or his demise.
For decades throughout his life, Prince was put on a pedestal. Let’s just leave him there.
Prince Rogers Nelson June 7, 1958 – April 21, 2016 RIP
KG Headbangerwoman June 7 2016