PunkFunkRockPop: The Minneapolis Music Collection

Jellybean's Jacket

Jellybean's Jacket
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In the mid-1970s, Flyte Tyme was probably the Twin Cities' major rival to the Grand Central trio of Prince, Morris Day, and Andre Cymone. Terry Lewis (later of the Grammy-winning Flyte Tyme Productions), singer-saxaphonist Cynthia Johnson (of later "Funkytown" fame), and drummer Jellybean Johnson were the core of this band, which sometimes numbered as many as ten people, including a four-person horn section. Their ambition and do-it-yourself attitude was like that of their white contemporaries Hüsker Dü. According to Prince biographer Dave Hill, "They were a model of young, black self-organization. … They actually organized tours out of town, using their own 'raggedy old bus' to play shows in Chicago and even Memphis."1 Jellybean Johnson, a graduate of Marshall High School, went on to play with The Time, and by 1984, when he wore this jacket in Prince's film Purple Rain, he was a seasoned professional.


    1. Dave Hill, Prince: A Pop Life (New York: Harmony Books, 1989), 20-22.