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  • Writer's pictureEd Gaines

New Rick James Doc Reveals He Had A Beef With Prince

Rick James whipped out his thang in front of a record label exec, and had a super beef with Prince.

Former manager Kerry Gordy dishes details in the new documentary “Bitchin: The Sound and Fury of Rick James."

Gordy — eldest son of legendary Motown Records founder Berry Gordy — vividly describes how James was so frustrated by disappointing sales for his 1982 album “Throwin’ Down” and its accompanying tour, he marched into the office of then Motown President Jay Lasker to deliver his next LP. Then he proceeded to pour coke onto Lasker’s desk, snort it, jump on top of said desk, take out his penis — and shove it in Lasker’s face while yelling “Sell my goddamn record!”

Then Gordy reveals that, after the singer left the room, Lasker simply said “Lionel Richie,” effectively signaling that all of Motown’s muscle would now be put behind another one of the label’s stars — and James’ career was never the same.

That’s just some of the juicy tea in the documentary about the artist born James Ambrose Johnson Jr., who died at 56 in 2004 from cardiac and pulmonary failure — with nine different drugs in his system.


In archival interview footage throughout the documentary — which will premiere Sept. 3 on Showtime — Rick James himself reveals just how much debauchery went down during his tours: We were f–king standing on the verge of insanity in those days. Everybody was snorting cocaine. Everybody was taking quaaludes, drinking Cristal and Dom Perignon champagne, and getting butt naked and doing it in the bathroom.”

Although James was indeed a very kinky guy, pushing the boundaries of what women could withstand sexually, he had his own particular limits. According to his ex-wife Tanya Hijazi, Rick's "sexual exploits were more ‘You do that to that person. Let me watch. I wanna orchestrate some s–t over here. He wasn’t personally involved. He was not that kind of super freak. He didn’t let people touch him. He wasn’t, like, in the orgy — he would watch the orgy.”

But James would meet his super-freak match in Prince, who opened for him on tour in 1980 — when the Purple One was just beginning his revolutionary career — and it turned into one royal rivalry.

Parliament-Funkadelic bassist Bootsy Collins did some shows with them and recalls, “Rick definitely had an attitude with Prince. They just was competing with one another. They would pull plugs on each other … and [be] getting ready to go to blows.”

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