Prince’s older half-sibling, Alfred Jackson, is mourning the devastating loss of the legendary musician.
ET’s Nischelle Turner sat down with Jackson on Thursday in Minnesota, where he talked candidly about his brother’s death. Jackson and Prince share the same mother, Mattie Shaw.
“I miss my brother, because my brother was everything in the world to me,” a clearly emotional Jackson tells ET exclusively. “God bless Prince, God bless the world. He’s a legend, he really is.”
Jackson, who joined the Air Force when he was 21 years old and now resides in St. Cloud, Minnesota, says he hadn’t spoken to Prince in 15 years.
“He was so busy on the road because he had so many engagements with his music,” Jackson says. “So, he had to travel, all around the world. I always saw him on television, read the magazines, and said, ‘There’s my brother, Prince.’ I was so happy he was making it for himself, I really was.”
He and his mother would visit Prince at his Paisley Park estate, where the icon would spend most of his time.
“My mother liked looking at his records on the wall — she wishes she had that many herself,” Jackson jokes.
When it comes to childhood memories of Prince, he notes that the “Purple Rain” singer was incredibly gifted from an early age. In the memoir Possessed, written by Prince’s former drummer, Charles Smith, Jackson was said to have influenced Prince’s music when he was developing his sound at an early age. Jackson recalls to ET playing the piano in their mother’s basement, and Prince being able to copy everything he did, only “faster” and “better.”
“He was a genius,” Jackson says. “Wherever he heard music, he could copy it just like that — like he had a photographic memory or something.”
Jackson also recalls Prince’s fondness for singer James Brown.
“When he was younger, my father and mother would put him on stage, and he was dancing on stage and you should have seen him out there — he wasn’t but five years old,” Jackson remembers. “He would just copy him and do everything James Brown was doing.”
One memory that stands out is Prince’s well-known love of basketball.
“I think he wanted to be taller because he wanted to be a basketball player,” Jackson smiles, referring to Prince’s 5’2″ height. “We’d talk about basketball … this was when we were kids. I took him downstairs in the basement, you know, I said, ‘Prince, let’s play basketball.’ So we brought up all the paper in the house and put the trash can over there in the corner and threw paper into the basket … After I did him in that way, he went to school … and they kind of did him a favor because he was the smallest on the team. He did better than some of the rest of them.”
Source: ET | Antoinette Bueno