The Original 7ven (The Time) Talk Name Change & Purple Rain Sequel

The Original 7ven (The Time) Talk Name Change & Purple Rain Sequel

Morris Day, DrFunk, & Jerome Benton. Photo: Drfunkenberry.com

Morris Day, DrFunk, & Jerome Benton. Photo: Drfunkenberry.com

When I ran into the Time in August, there was no mention of a name change. All they told me is that everything is coming together and its time, for them, to return.

In mid-September, it is announced they are now called The Original 7ven (The band Formerly Known As The Time) and have a new album, “Condensate” which is out now.  The Original 7ven consists of all the original members of The Time, Morris Day, Jimmy Jam. Terry Lewis, Jesse Johnson, Monte Moir, Jellybean Johnson, and Jerome Benton.

A member of The Time calls me about the name change.  “Ahh.  We got you on that, didn’t we?  We were able to keep it a secret until we wanted it out there.”

Jerome Benton, Jimmy Jam, & Terry Lewis. Photo: Jeremiah Freed

Jerome Benton, Jimmy Jam, & Terry Lewis. Photo: Jeremiah Freed

So, I am thinking before we have this conversation about the name change.  About how dirty it is going to get between Prince (who owns the name The Time) and members of the group formerly called The Time.  I’m expecting a few curse words about their old boss and touring buddy.  What I was not expecting was what they actually said.

“So why the name change?  What happened”

“Doc, we love Prince.  Love.  We are friends.  Been friends since we were 11 years old.  He told us that he did not want us using the name.  That he owns it.  We were not going to fight him.  Friends do not fight over business.  We decided to come up with a new name and move on.”

“OK, but why The Original 7ven?  Why not Flyte Tyme?  What made you use that name?”

“We could have easily used Flyte Time but we decided to go where people did not expect us to go.  This is a name we can call all our own.”

“But you guys have been touring underneath the name for 30 years.  Why the problem over the name now?”

“Doc, in the past few years, when you have went to see The Time, who was playing?  Was it all 7 of the original members?  No.  Now, when you see the name The Original 7ven, you know it is us.  All of us. Not just a part here and there.”

Jesse Johnson, Monte Moir, Jellybean Johnson's Hand. Photo: Jeremiah Freed

Jesse Johnson, Monte Moir, Jellybean Johnson's Hand. Photo: Jeremiah Freed

Their new song “#Trendin” was released as a 40 second sample and at first, people were slamming it, saying it was not funky.

“How can people judge from a 40 second sample if a song is bad?  They need to wait and we are sure they will be satisfied with the new single and the new record.”

The talk came back to Prince and the band.

“Prince feared us even back then.  We were the only band that he was afraid of.  What does that say about us?  All of us have been fired by Prince at one time or another.  We still love him though.  It was business to him and we understand that.”

Terry Lewis & Jesse Johnson. Photo: Jeremiah Freed

Terry Lewis & Jesse Johnson. Photo: Jeremiah Freed

A month passes by and I talk to the band during rehearsals for their upcoming show in Los Angeles at Club Nokia and they tell me they will be also be playing in Minneapolis and New York shortly.

The band sounds tight as they run through new songs and classic favorites.

“We had so many songs to choose from that we recorded.  We were waiting for the right deal to come along and we feel we have it.  We feel real fans of The Time are going to love it.”

But will the name change stick?

“We are the Original 7ven.  We always have been.  You can call us The Time but we are going to call ourselves The Original 7ven.”

They are proud of the new album and cannot wait to tour with it and are looking forward to being on The Tonight Show With Jay Leno on October 27th.

 

The Original 7ven are legends.  Although not all of them were in “Purple Rain” the greatest rock and roll movie ever made, it solidified them and made them achieve cult status, being mentioned and featured in “Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back” by Kevin Smith, a huge Time and Prince fan.

When the talk of Purple Rain came up, they had this to say;

“Prince still looks good.  He still plays amazing.  We look and sound great too.  Prince still has Paisley Park.  There is no reason we shouldn’t give the people what they want.  Let’s hire some writers and make a sequel to “Purple Rain” because there is no reason why we can’t.”

Seriously?

“Yes.  Let’s use his studios and get it done.  He can do it.  We can do it.  Let’s do it.”

Interesting.  Although they may be called The Original 7ven now, there is no reason to believe they are still not on Time.  The new record is a slice of funk for those that remember the Minneapolis Sound and allow it to be updated and not just stuck in the 80’s.-DocFB

Diagnosis:  They Are Not Sweating, They Are Condensating

When using story or photos, please credit drfunkenberry.com as this is copyrighted and exclusive material. 

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25 Comments
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  • Erica
    Posted at 20:38h, 24 October

    I know I’m late but… HOLLAAAA!!! U R-O-C-K Doc! =0)

  • John48221
    Posted at 09:08h, 21 October

    Makes sense for them to make the change. Fans know who makes up the band and that’s the line-up the want to see. OG7! For someone who always fought against the record companies and their policies Prince likes to act like them. Still love me some Prince but come on. Going to buy the album just heard about it this week.

  • justmemuchlove
    Posted at 05:21h, 20 October

    Aaawww Nice work doc. Thank you the original 7ven
    #trending

  • Gbear
    Posted at 21:56h, 19 October

    Prolly, a proper “Purple Rain 2” movie will never happen. I still think its possible the Time and Prince will work together again on some music or play some shows together.

  • Eric W Jackson
    Posted at 20:30h, 19 October

    Just bought and I am jammin 2 the new OG7 CD! I love what I hear and I wasn’t expecting much. There is some great Minny Funk here! Wasn’t sure I would see a Prince thank you on the album credits, but the guys showed class as they always do.
    I’d like 2 see a Purple Rain 2, but I don’t think WB and Prince would go for it. A great script and a few great albums….who knows what could happen.

  • steve
    Posted at 11:07h, 19 October

    Just listen to “ROLE PLAY” you get Minneapolis funk in tons.hurry up Grace

  • Terri Kirkland
    Posted at 05:07h, 19 October

    Doc great interview! I’ve been listening to the OG 7 Condensate cd & let them know that boys “this sh*#t is sick”. Enjoyed dvd too .

  • Sivez
    Posted at 19:17h, 18 October

    Wow!! great story Doc!

  • Modernaire
    Posted at 18:18h, 18 October

    Wasn’t Graffiti Bridge the Purple Rain sequel? I think so.

    Prince and The OG7 still look good – BUT Prince is a Jehovah Witness and also if he’s going to give you issues over “The Time”… not so sure it would work.

    There would have to be all kinds of issues worked out – with Warner Brothers, PRN, original directors and even The Revolution would be involved, it can get really complicated… gives me a headache just thinking about it.

    Which makes me feel that maybe the Revolution should re-unite for a new album but under a new name – like The Constitution or The Revelation! With a new Prince tribute band lead singer, all of the Rev still look good! It can happen!

  • Myles Matisse
    Posted at 14:57h, 18 October

    Purple Rain II if done like the original with the same drama, grit and musicality would be great. By the way, Doc…did you ever read the sequel I wrote and sent you? Anyway, as for the name change, I like it. And, while it’s “business” that keeps Prince holding tight onto the names The Time and The Family, fact is, Prince wrote most of all the songs by them under those names anyway, leading the public on to think that the members of The Time and The Family wrote them. So, of course if Prince owns the music and the names, it’d be like him letting other people use the name “Prince”. However, sending The Time and The Family “cease and desist letters” relating to the names was a bit too much on the “business” side of things. It’s all about the musical legacy of what those bands created. By coming up with Original 7ven and fDeluxe, it’s fracturing that legacy a little bit. Prince’s decision to keep the names. The Time’s and The Family’s wise decision to move on with new names and new beginnings under their rules, their songwriting, their production, their performance. THAT’s what time it is. As for a sequel, sure the men of Original 7ven may be down with doing the film, but I got word right from Albert Magnoli (director of original Purple Rain) that it will never happen. Prince and Warners own the rights to the original film and are NOT interested in doing a sequel. One Warners doesn’t think it would be lucrative and financially successful on a grand scale and two, Prince just ain’t interested in going back (again) after trying (and failing) with “Graffiti Bridge”. Just not interested in rehashing the past like that, no matter how killer the script. He’s got too much going on NOW to cash in on the past. If he was interested in all that, he would have at the very least re-released all his original Warners catalogue in remastered form with bonus tracks, DVDs and a box set. It ain’t happening.

  • violet aura
    Posted at 13:05h, 18 October

    Can’t wait to see the fellas tomorrow!Ya know it’s funny that I would always say…I haven’t seen the original seven members yet.Looks like I will FINALLY get 2!As for the Purple Rain Sequel.I agree with CM.Leave it in the past and move on to somethin new! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  • Terri Walsh
    Posted at 11:56h, 18 October

    Hello! People who understand business. And this is why I love them. Smart people who are talented in their own right learn, understand and handle business the way they’re supposed to. When they come to NYC this girl will be front row 🙂

  • Purple Funk Lover
    Posted at 11:54h, 18 October

    & we are done …

    Thanks Doc …

  • Chris G
    Posted at 11:47h, 18 October

    Knocked that one out of the park Doc. Great timing too. It’s gonna be a great week in LA!

  • CM
    Posted at 11:28h, 18 October

    God no please not a Purple Rain sequel!

  • Tiffani K
    Posted at 11:26h, 18 October

    ♥ them under ANY name…Im ready for a PR2..and I just hope they Condensate in Cleveland so I can see them!

  • Patricia
    Posted at 11:21h, 18 October

    Please Come to Dallas Texas
    Hi Jesse! Merciful Forever.

  • Patricia
    Posted at 11:19h, 18 October

    Beautiful Men of Every Shade. Continue to Lead Us Musically!
    Hi Jesse! Merciful Forever.

  • The Lavender Luxury
    Posted at 10:56h, 18 October

    Nice interview Doc…
    Interesting to hear their ideas & the reason behind the name change…
    I gotta mark Oct 27th on my phone to check out Jay Leno…

    @thelavenderlux

  • Becky Neubauer Morgan
    Posted at 10:52h, 18 October

    Thanks Doc, just goes to show you that all these guys are 1st Class!! Prince doesn’t trash talk them (never has) and they don’t trash talk him! Classy and talented a rare combo these days!

  • Hump
    Posted at 10:48h, 18 October

    s/#Trending/#Trendin

  • Hump
    Posted at 10:46h, 18 October

    just got Condensate its on second play now AWESOME!
    im gonna play it non stop for at least the rest of the week.
    #Trending Quakenet is now open to share opinions about the album … hover over my nick on top of this comment and get the webchat link. 😉

  • Casey Rain
    Posted at 10:45h, 18 October

    ….AND THAT’S WHAT TIME IT IS!!!

    Thanks Doc. I can’t wait to get hold of Condensate. Although I’ll be importing the US version cos I want the DVD (I have a regionless player so it’s all good).

    All 7 members of the group are heroes to me, I love them all and so happy they are back together. Hopefully they do some UK dates, or maybe “it’s about time” I take a trip to the US and catch THE ORIGINAL 7VEN live whilst I can!!!

    Oh, and a Purple Rain sequel? Hell to the yeah. Prince, get it done!!!

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