The MPLS Sound comic book is about Prince. THAT Prince. The series is self described as “the ultimate love letter to the funky pop-rock sound that made The Artist Formerly Known as Prince a legend”. That alone should grab the attention of comic book geeks and music aficionados alike.
First announced onstage at the Apollo Theater in Harlem in 2020, MPLS Sound is a new graphic novel that dropped in August of 2021 by Joe Illidge, Hannibal Tabu, and Meredith Laxton. The book explores the Minneapolis music scene of the late 1970s with an emphasis on the impact and legacy of Prince’s musical genius on it. MPLS Sound stars Theresa, a young black female guitarist inspired by Prince, who is looking to start her own music revolution. She forms Starchild, a fictional band that is awesomely portrayed alongside real Minneapolis musicians of the time. Starchild finds itself vying for Prince’s approval in hopes of becoming his regular band.
And again, while the graphic novel is a tribute to Prince and his enduring musical impact. The book also outlines the manipulative business practices of the music industry, while also detailing the unique personalities, atmosphere and music venues of the Minneapolis music scene of the time.
The creators of the graphic novel are rarities as well, black vets in the comic book game. Joseph Illidge is the Executive Editor at Heavy Metal. He’s also on the board of the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund and formerly worked on Batman for DC Comics. The co-creator is Hannibal Tabu. He’s an award-winning writer and author at Bleeding Cool News. He also has a weekly comic book review column The Buy Pile that is part of iHeartRadio’s Nerd-O-Rama podcast.
MPLS Sound is a fascinating look at a fascinating artist at a pivotal time in music showing exactly how His Royal Badness transformed the music scene while at the same time showing one black woman’s journey to find her own voice. A truly unique creation for The Culture you should definitely check out.
We hope you enjoyed this look at the MPLS Sound comic book. Check out some more of our black comic book content:
Written by @TalentedMrFord