Prince gossip still makes New Yorkers giddy

We all love our hometown hero, the notorious little guy with endless sex appeal spit out through guitar solos and hip gyrations. But we still find it fascinating when everyone else goes nuts for him and the gossip makes it back to the Twin Cities.

Prince played two private shows in New York City this weekend at the Gansevoort Hotel. Celebrity sightings were abundant and Prince's weird requests (humidifiers in every room and blacked out windows) were easy to track down. Check below the jump for all the juicy details.

Prince performed for about 200 people where he played a set to celebrate his new photo book, 21 Nights, and raise money for Love 4 One Another Charities and Urban Farming, according to New York magazine. Tickets were going for $1,000.

The crowd was more Sex and the City than Glam Slam, but none of that mattered when the Beautiful One -- sporting a black sweater with a rough, skeletal patterned, sparkly décolletage, and an appealing aura of compassion -- took the stage. He immediately made reference to the economic crisis ("It's been a strange day ... we're gonna make you feel better!"), then, appropriately enough, launched into a blues riff. Harmonica solos came to dominate the night, though it wasn't just the Market Crash blues he was singing; there were also curious tales of "cockeyed women."

The crowd got a good show with classics like "1999" and "Purple Rain" along with covers "Le Freak" and "Doo Doo Doo Doo Doo (Heartbreaker). The more predictable hits: "Cream," "I Feel 4U," even a quick chorus of "U Got the Look" (sadly sans Sheena Easton).

NY mag also blogged the celeb sightings:

We'd missed Howard Stern and Spike Lee, who went to the earlier show (they apparently had to get home before midnight or they turned even more pumpkinlike than they are now). Tom Green and Dennis Rodman rolled up first, looking a little out of place (they're on Celebrity Apprentice together or some such). Someone said to Green, "Are you here for Prince?" "Huh? He's playing?" the comedian asked. "That's cool." We think they didn't get in -- we didn't see them upstairs.

Top Chef almost-winner Sam Talbot jumped to the head of the outdoor queue.

Anderson Cooper was there with a friend who was a boy. They were eating dinner on the terrace. It seemed romantic. Dave Chappelle was there, muscular. Prince was there too, emerging from the space beneath the stage like a funky leprechaun. He's so wee and ageless! How can he truly be 50? Every American -- gay or straight, black or white, male or female (because Prince is partially all of these) -- would do well to emulate Prince.

And the best part? It wasn't as awesome as Minneapolis in 1986. We knew this city was good for something:

It wasn't Minneapolis in 1986, but when Price closed with encore "Nothing Compares 2U," the room was flush enough with love to make it all right.

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