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comedy pays tribute to Prince; SNL, Dave Chappelle, the Simpsons, Maya Rudolph & more

Prince on the Simpsons

As the tributes to Prince continue to roll in, there have been a few recent poignant tributes coming from the world of comedy.

Saturday Night Live ran an entire episode devoted to the Purple One over the weekend, a clip show with new Jimmy Fallon introductions, featuring Prince’s live performances on the man and many of “The Prince Show” sketches with Fred Armisen as Prince and Maya Rudolph as Beyonce. They also showed, for the first time ever, the footage of Prince playing the SNL 40th Anniversary Show afterparty. Video from that is below.

Speaking of, you may know that Maya Rudolph co-fronts a Prince tribute actPrincess, with her friend Gretchen Leiberum. Princess were already scheduled to play Austin on Saturday, April 23 as part of the fifth-annual Moontower Comedy Festival, which they decided to play as as a tribute and left Rudolph in tears. From Rolling Stone:

“You never think your heroes are going to die,” Rudolph said amid sobs. “It’s so strange, but it happened to me. My hero died. I never knew what that felt like. And it’s so sad, because there just aren’t that many incredible musicians left.

“I’ve been a Prince fan my whole life,” she continued, “and am realizing how many other people in the world loved him. I don’t know what we’re going to do, but now I just want to sing more songs. I know that’s what Prince would do. I’m not Prince by a fucking mile, but there’s something about singing these songs that scratches an itch that I can’t explain. Thank you so much for letting us do this, and we hope to see you again.”

Meanwhile, current Simpsons showrunner Al Jean took to twitter to share some pages of a Prince-centric Simpsons episode, written by Conan O’Brien, that was never produced but would have run back in season five. Envisioned as a semi-sequel to the classic Season 3 episode “Stark Raving Dad,” where a man believing himself to be Michael Jackson ends up staying at the Simpsons’ house, this would have found the same character, Leon Kompowsky, believing he was Prince. Ultimately the episode never aired as there was disagreement between Prince and the Simpsons people over the episode, but now you can see some of what it would have looked like. Check out those tweets below.

And finally, Dave Chapelle had a show scheduled last Friday (4/22) that he almost cancelled, but he ended up going onstage and holding a four-hour tribute to the man that included music and many anecdotes from encounters that Dave and Prince had after Prince made it known that he was a fan of Chappelle’s hilarious impression of him. “This is black 9/11,” he told the crowd early on but later added “There’s no where else I’d rather be,” he said as he mourned Prince until 6 AM.

Check out video of the SNL tribute, those Simpsons pages, the classic Chappelle/Prince sketch, and Maya Rudolph’s Princess show below.

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