Of all of the groundbreaking skits that marked the too-brief run of Chappelle’s Show, undoubtedly in everyone’s Top 5 is the “Charlie Murphy True Hollywood Story” (RIP, King) in which the late comedian recalls a basketball face-off with Prince and his entourage at Paisley Park. Memorably, the Purple One hooped circles around Murphy and his crew before serving the losing team a pancake breakfast.
Prince’s basketball prowess dates back to high school and has since been confirmed by others, including by the artist himself in his posthumously published memoir, The Beautiful Ones. As excitement builds for the upcoming release of Prince’s first posthumous album, this week, his skills as a baller were lauded yet again by an old friend; music exec Kerry “KG” Gordy, son of Motown’s Berry Gordy, reminisced with Page Six about his own on-court experience with the late icon—who was appropriately dressed for the occasion, as always.
“He was slipping a little bit with his high-heeled shoes on,” Gordy recalled. “I don’t know how he did it. I guess he was playing on his tippy toes because, you know, running in high heels is a nightmare. But anyway, he was amazing.”
Of course, that wasn’t the only amazing aspect of Prince, who would’ve turned 63 this June. The famously enigmatic artist was in the process of recording the upcoming Welcome 2 America when he died in April 2016, a process that at least one bandmember recounts was signified by Prince’s commanding, if diminutive presence. The approach clearly worked; the album’s first single, “Hot Summer” is already garnering raves.
But as an exec and friend, Gordy recalls pushing back against the Purple One. “I would tell him ‘no’,” he told Page Six, “and most people couldn’t tell him ‘no.’”
Still, the twinkle that always seemed to be in Prince’s eye was apparently indicative of a playful soul beneath the public mystique.
“[It was a] childlike spirit,” said Gordy. “But when he was out in the public, he was cool, always cool.”