Charlie Parker

Prince's death a blow for music everywhere

He was named after a jazz band, so it's little wonder he became a musician. But a musician can be someone who merely plays an instrument, and Prince Rogers Nelson did much more than play. He did more than sing. He did more than compose. He certainly did more than dance, wear wild clothes, talk in a whisper or lead a multi-partnered love life, things the more gossipy media outlets are focusing on in the aftermath of his mysterious death last week at age 57.

If you want to know how blessed with talent Prince was -- how much creation oozed through his bloodstream -- look at how many musicians are grieving him today. When a pop star dies, the public mourns the face and the persona. When...