When it came to pop music throughout my roughly 43 year career of putting together the 2300 hrs. of video content being posted here at ImaSportsPhile …..with some 700+ hours of nearly all genres of music included…..and albeit the mainstream music universe has always put such pop artists as The Beatles, Elton John, Madonna, Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, Barbra Streisand, The Rolling Stones, Bee Gee’s, Mariah Carey, Brittney Spears, ABBA, The Beach Boys, The Carpenters and Janet Jackson…..just to name a few who are consistently put ahead of today’s featured pop music legend…..whom in my opinion is the # 1 of all time because you can not rate perfection that is off the charts…..untouchable, period…..for Prince aka The Artist Formerly Known As Prince he can not be grouped with anyone, he stood alone, because his genius is somewhat unattainable. I simply cannot believe one human did the vocals, guitar, bass, drums, piano, synthesizers…..as well as songwriting all on literally several of the greatest songs ever…..cuz you’d be hard pressed to find a similar situation. Prince made so many of his songs seem like it was a full symphony orchestra backing his vocals…..but it was all him on every instrument…..a perfectly formed one man bad…..and such pure musical genius…..so, we hope that you enjoy this showcase of the eternal legend that was Prince.
Music – Documentary – 2017 – An ABC News Production Special – “The Legendary Music Career and Life of Prince: Part 1”
Prince Rogers Nelson (June 7, 1958 – April 21, 2016) was a one of a kind generational American singer, songwriter, musician and record producer. The recipient of numerous awards and nominations, he is widely regarded as one of the greatest musicians of his generation. He was known for his flamboyant, androgynous persona; his wide vocal range, which included a far-reaching falsetto and high-pitched screams; and his skill as a multi-instrumentalist, often preferring to play all or most of the instruments on his recordings. His music incorporated a wide variety of styles, including funk, R&B, rock, new wave, soul, synth-pop, pop, jazz, blues and hip hop. Prince produced his albums himself, pioneering the Minneapolis sound.
Music – Documentary – 2017 – A “Music Documentaries & Concerts” Production Special – “Prince: Behind the Scenes Documentary”
Born and raised in Minneapolis, Prince signed a record deal with Warner Bros. Records at the age of 19, soon releasing the albums For You (1978) and Prince (1979). He went on to achieve critical success with the influential albums Dirty Mind (1980), Controversy (1981), and 1999 (1982). His sixth album, Purple Rain (1984), was recorded with his new backing band the Revolution, and was also the soundtrack to the film of the same name in which he starred. Purple Rain garnered continued success for Prince and was a major commercial achievement, spending six consecutive months atop the Billboard 200 chart. The soundtrack also won Prince the Academy Award for Best Original Song Score. After disbanding the Revolution, Prince released the album Sign o’ the Times (1987), widely hailed by critics as the greatest work of his career.
Music – Documentary – 2018 – A Malta Babe Production Special – “Prince: Documentary”
In the midst of a contractual dispute with Warner Bros. in 1993, he changed his stage name to the unpronounceable symbol (known to fans as the “Love Symbol”) and was often referred to as The Artist Formerly Known as Prince (or TAFKAP) or simply The Artist. After moving to Arista Records in 1998, Prince reverted to his original name in 2000. Over the next decade, six of his albums entered the U.S. top 10 charts. In April 2016, at the age of 57, Prince died after accidentally overdosing on fentanyl at his Paisley Park home and recording studio in Chanhassen, Minnesota. He was a prolific musician who released 39 albums during his life, with a vast array of unreleased material left in a custom-built bank vault underneath his home after his death, including fully completed albums and over 50 finished music videos. Released posthumously, his demo albums Piano and a Microphone 1983 (2018) and Originals (2019) both received critical acclaim.
Music – 1978 – From the Album “Prince – For You” – Prince Sings – “For You”
Music – Official Music Video – 1979 – From the Album “Prince” – Prince Sings – “Still Waiting”
Music – Official Music Video – 1979 – From the Album “Prince” – Prince Sings – “I Feel For You”
Music – Official Music Video – 1980 – From the Album “Dirty Mind” – Prince Sings – “Uptown”
Music – 1981 – From the Album “Controversy” – Prince Sings – “Do Me Baby”
Music – 1981 – From the Album “Controversy” – Prince Sings – “Controversy”
Music – Official Music Video – 1982 – From the Album “1999” – Prince Sings – “1999”
Music – Official Music Video – 1982 – From the Album “1999” – Prince Sings – “Little Red Corvette”
Music – 1984 – From the Album “Purple Rain” – Prince Sings – “The Beautiful Ones”
Music – 1987 – From the Album “Sign of the Times” – Prince Sings – “Adore”
Music – 1987 – From the Album “Sign of the Times” – Prince Sings – “The Cross”
Prince sold over 100 million records worldwide, ranking him among the best-selling music artists of all time. His awards included the Grammy President’s Merit Award, the American Music Awards for Achievement and of Merit, the Billboard Icon Award, an Academy Award, and a Golden Globe Award. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2004, the UK Music Hall of Fame in 2006, and the Rhythm and Blues Music Hall of Fame in 2016, and was inducted twice into the Black Music & Entertainment Walk of Fame in 2022. Estimates of the complete number of songs written by Prince range anywhere from 500 to well over 1,000, some of which were made popular after being covered by other musicians, most notably “Nothing Compares 2 U” by Sinéad O’Connor and “Manic Monday” by the Bangles.
Music – 1999 – Live in Concert at Paisley Park – Prince Sings – “Nothing Compares 2 U”
Music – Official Music Video – 1984 – Prince Sings – “Manic Monday” – Featuring Prince Live In The Studio
Prince Rogers Nelson was born in Minneapolis on June 7, 1958, the son of jazz singer Mattie Della (née Shaw) and pianist and songwriter John Lewis Nelson. All four of his grandparents were from Louisiana. His grand-aunt was the black nationalist Mittie Maude Lena Gordon, who established the Peace Movement of Ethiopia and advocated emigration to West Africa in response to American white supremacy. The jazz drummer Louis Hayes was his paternal cousin.
Music – Documentary – 2023 – A “Sinnik22” Production Special – “Prince: Era 1958 To 1980”
Prince was named after his father’s most popular stage name, Prince Rogers, which his father used while performing with Prince’s mother in a jazz group called the Prince Rogers Trio. In 1991, Prince’s father told A Current Affair that he named his son “Prince” because he wanted Prince “to do everything I wanted to do”. Prince was not fond of his name and wanted people to instead call him “Skipper”, a name which stuck throughout his childhood. Prince said he was “born epileptic” and had seizures when he was young. He stated, “My mother told me one day I walked in to her and said, ‘Mom, I’m not going to be sick anymore,’ and she said, ‘Why?’ and I said, ‘Because an angel told me so.'” Prince’s younger sister, Tyka, was born on May 18, 1960. Both siblings developed a keen interest in music, which was encouraged by their father. His parents were both members of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, an evangelical denomination.
Music – Documentary – 2023 – A “Sinnik22” Production Special – “Prince: Era 1980 To 1983”
In 2022, during a Minneapolis teachers’ strike, Minneapolis news station WCCO-TV was researching a previous teacher’s strike in 1970 and accidentally uncovered an interview they had done with Prince about the 1970 strike. Prince, who was 11 or 12 years old at the time, said about the strike, “I think they should get a better education too cause, um, and I think they should get some more money cause they work, they be working extra hours for us and all that stuff.” While he never identifies himself in the interview, it was confirmed to be him through interviews with a historian in Minneapolis who is also a fan of Prince, as well as by a former classmate who was a member of Prince’s first band. The video is one of very few videos of Prince from that stage of his life.
Music & News – 2022 – A WCCO-CBS Minnesota News Production Special – “Prince: Footage Unearthed Of The Music Superstar At Age 11”
Prince wrote his 1st song, “Funk Machine”, on his father’s piano when he was seven years old…..then his parents divorced when he was 10……and his mother remarried to Hayward Baker…..with whom she had a son named Omarr…..and Prince had a fraught relationship with Omarr, to the extent that it caused him to repeatedly switch homes, sometimes living with his father and sometimes with his mother and stepfather. Baker took Prince to see James Brown in concert…..as Prince credited Baker with improving the family’s finances. After a brief period of living with his father, who bought him his 1st guitar, Prince moved into the basement of his neighbors, the Anderson family, after his father threw him out. He befriended the Andersons’ son, Andre, who later collaborated with Prince and became known as André Cymone.
Music & Talk Shows – 2010 – A “kamasutrabien” Production Special – “Prince: Talking About His Childhood
Prince attended Minneapolis’ Bryant Junior High and then Central High School, where he played football, basketball, and baseball. He played on Central’s junior varsity basketball team, and continued to play basketball for fun as an adult. While attending Bryant, he was trained in classical ballet at the Minnesota Dance Theatre through the Urban Arts Program of Minneapolis Public Schools. He grew to become an advocate for dancers, and would later use his wealth to save the failing Joffrey Ballet in Chicago during the 1990s. He met songwriter and producer Jimmy Jam in 1973 and impressed Jam with his musical talent, early mastery of a wide range of instruments, and work ethic.
Music – Documentary – 2015 – A “Tony Knoss” Production Special – “Prince: History In Minnesota Growing Up”
In 1975, Pepe Willie (the husband of Prince’s cousin Shauntel), formed the band 94 East with Marcy Ingvoldstad and Kristie Lazenberry…..while hiring André Cymone and Prince to record tracks…..as Willie wrote the songs, and Prince contributed guitar tracks…..when Prince and Willie co-wrote the 94 East song, “Just Another Sucker”. The band recorded tracks which later became the album Minneapolis Genius – The Historic 1977 Recordings. In 1976, shortly after graduating from Central High School, Prince created a demo tape with producer Chris Moon, in Moon’s Minneapolis studio. Unable to secure a recording contract, Moon brought the tape to Owen Husney, a Minneapolis businessman, who signed Prince, age 19, to a management contract…..and helped him create a demo at Sound 80 Studios in Minneapolis…..along with producer/engineer David Z. The demo recording, along with a press kit produced at Husney’s ad agency, resulted in interest from several record companies, including Warner Bros. Records, A&M Records, and Columbia Records. With the help of Husney, Prince signed a recording contract with Warner Bros…..when the record company agreed to give Prince creative control for three albums and retain his publishing rights. Husney and Prince then left Minneapolis and moved to Sausalito, California, where Prince’s 1st album, For You, was recorded at Record Plant Studios. The album was mixed in Los Angeles and released on April 7, 1978. According to the For You album notes, Prince wrote, produced, arranged, composed, and played all 27 instruments on the recording, except for the song “Soft and Wet”, whose lyrics were co-written by Moon. The cost of recording the album was twice Prince’s initial advance. Prince used the Prince’s Music Co. to publish his songs. “Soft and Wet” reached # 12 on the Hot Soul Singles chart and # 92 on the Billboard Hot 100…..while the song “Just as Long as We’re Together” reached # 91 on the Hot Soul Singles chart.
Music – 1978 – From the Album “For You” – Prince Sings – “Soft and Wet”
Music – 1978 – From the Album “For You” – Prince Sings – “As Long As We’re Together”
In 1979, Prince created a band with André Cymone on bass, Dez Dickerson on guitar, Gayle Chapman and Doctor Fink on keyboards, and Bobby Z. on drums. Their 1st show was at the Capri Theater on January 5, 1979…..as Warner Bros. executives attended the show…..but decided that Prince and the band needed more time to develop his music…..then in October 1979, Prince released the album Prince…..which was # 4 on the Billboard Top R&B/Black Albums charts…..plus # 22 on the Billboard 200…..and went platinum…..which contained two R&B hits: “Why You Wanna Treat Me So Bad?” and “I Wanna Be Your Lover”…..while both sold over a million copies…. and reached # 11 on the Billboard Hot 100…..plus # 1 for two weeks on the Hot Soul Singles chart. Prince performed both these songs on January 26, 1980, on American Bandstand. On this album, Prince used Ecnirp Music – BMI.
Music – Official Music Video – 1979 – From the Album “Prince” – Prince Sings – “I Wanna Be Your Lover”
Music – Official Music Video – 1979 – From the Album “Prince” – Prince Sings – “Why You Wanna Treat Me So Bad?”
In 1980, Prince released the album Dirty Mind…..which contained sexually explicit material, including the title song, “Head”…..as well as the song “Sister”…..and was described by Stephen Thomas Erlewine as a “stunning, audacious amalgam of funk, new wave, R&B, and pop, fueled by grinningly salacious sex and the desire to shock”. Recorded in Prince’s own studio, this album was certified gold…..and the single “Uptown” reached # 5 on the Billboard Dance chart…..plus # 5 on the Hot Soul Singles chart. Prince was also the opening act for Rick James’ 1980 Fire It Up tour.
Music – Official Music Video – 1980 – From the Album “Dirty Minds” – Prince Sings – “Dirty Minds”
Music – 1980 – From the Album “Dirty Minds” – Prince Sings – “Head”
Music – 1980 – From the Album “Dirty Minds” – Prince Sings – “Sister”
Music – Official Music Video – 1980 – From the Album “Dirty Minds” – Prince Sings – “Uptown”
In February 1981, Prince made his 1st appearance on Saturday Night Live, performing “Partyup”…..then in October 1981, Prince released the album Controversy…..the he played several dates in support of it…..as the 1st of three opening acts for the Rolling Stones, on their US tour…..when he got boo’d off stage. He began 1982 with a small tour of college towns where he was the headlining act. The songs on Controversy were published by Controversy Music – ASCAP, a practice he continued until the Emancipation album in 1996. Controversy also marked the introduction of Prince’s use of abbreviated spelling, such as writing the words you as U, to as 2, and for as 4……when by 2002, MTV News noted that “[n]ow all of his titles, liner notes, and Web postings are written in his own shorthand spelling, as seen on 1999’s Rave Un2 the Joy Fantastic, which featured ‘Hot Wit U.'”
Music – 1981 – From the Album “Dirty Mind” – Prince Sings – “Partyup”
Music – Live in Concert – 1982 – A “Nightchild Reviews – Prince Channel” Production Special – “Prince : Live In Concert In Los Angeles – “Prince: What Happened When Prince Opened For The Rolling Stones?”
In 1981, Prince formed a side project band called The Time…..which released four albums between 1981 and 1990…..with Prince writing and performing most of the instrumentation and backing vocals (sometimes credited under the pseudonyms “Jamie Starr” or “The Starr Company”)…..with lead vocals by Morris Day. In late 1982, Prince released a double album, 1999, which sold over four million copies. The title track was a protest against nuclear proliferation and became Prince’s 1st top 10 hit in countries outside the US. Prince’s “Little Red Corvette” was one of the first two videos by black artists (along with Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean”) played in heavy rotation on MTV, which had been perceived as against “black music” until CBS President Walter Yetnikoff threatened to pull all CBS videos. Prince and Jackson had a competitive rivalry which lasted for many years. The song “Delirious” also placed in the top ten on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. “International Lover” earned Prince his 1st Grammy Award nomination at the 26th Annual Grammy Awards.
Music – Official Music Video – 1982 – From the Album “1999” – Prince Sings – “1999”
Music – Official Music Video – 1982 – From the Album “1999” – Prince Sings – “Little Red Corvette”
Music – 1983 – Live at First Avenue – Prince & The Revolution Perform – “Delirious”
During this period Prince referred to his band as the Revolution. The band’s name was also printed, in reverse, on the cover of 1999 inside the letter “I” of the word “Prince”. The band consisted of Lisa Coleman and Doctor Fink on keyboards, Bobby Z. on drums, Brown Mark on bass, and Dez Dickerson on guitar…..while Jill Jones, a backing singer, was also part of the lineup for the 1999 album and tour. Following the 1999 Tour, Dickerson left the group for religious reasons. In the book Possessed: The Rise and Fall of Prince (2003), author Alex Hahn says that Dickerson was reluctant to sign a three-year contract and wanted to pursue other musical ventures, when Dickerson was replaced by Coleman’s friend Wendy Melvoin. At 1st the band was used sparsely in the studio…..but this gradually changed during 1983. According to his former manager Bob Cavallo, in the early 1980’s Prince required his management to obtain a deal for him to star in a major motion picture….. despite the fact that his exposure at that point was limited to several pop and R&B hits, music videos and occasional TV performances…..albeit this resulted in the hit film Purple Rain in 1984…..which starred Prince and was loosely autobiographical…..plus, the eponymous studio album…..which was also the soundtrack to the film. The Purple Rain album sold more than 13 million copies in the US…..while spending 24 consecutive weeks at # 1 on the Billboard 200 chart. The film won Prince an Academy Award for Best Original Song Score…..and grossed over $68 million in the US. Songs from the film were hits on pop charts around the world…..as “When Doves Cry” and “Let’s Go Crazy” reached # 1…..and the title track reached # 2 on the Billboard Hot 100. At one point in 1984, Prince simultaneously had the # 1 album, single and film in the US…..which was the 1st time a singer had achieved this feat. The Purple Rain album is ranked 8th in Rolling Stone‘s 500 Greatest Albums of All Time…..while also being included on the list of Time magazine’s All-Time 100 Albums. The album also produced two of Prince’s 1st three Grammy Awards earned at the 27th Annual Grammy Awards—Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal and Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media.
Music – Official Music Video – 1984 – From the Album “Purple Rain” – Prince Sings – “Purple Rain”
Music – Official Music Video – 1984 – From the Album “Purple Rain” – Prince Sings – “When Doves Cry”
Music – Official Music Video – 1984 – From the Album “Purple Rain” – Prince Sings – “Let’s Go Crazy”
Music & Awards – 1985 – The Grammy Awards Presents – Prince Performing – “Baby I’m A Star”
Music & Awards – 1985 – The Grammy Awards – Madonna + Huey Lewis Present Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal To Prince & The Revolution
In 1984, pop artist Andy Warhol created the painting Orange Prince in1984 …..as the artist was fascinated by Prince…..and ultimately created a total of twelve unique paintings of him in different colorways…..which were all kept in Warhol’s personal collection. Four of these paintings are now in the collection of The Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh. In November 1984, Vanity Fair published Warhol’s portrait to accompany the article Purple Fame by Tristan Fox…..and claimed that Warhol’s silkscreen image of Prince with its pop colors captured the recording artist “at the height of his powers”. The Vanity Fair article was one of the 1st global media pieces written as a critical appreciation of the musician…..which coincided with the start of the 98-date Purple Rain Tour. After Tipper Gore heard her 11-year-old daughter Karenna listening to Prince’s song “Darling Nikki”…..which gained wide notoriety for its sexual lyrics and a reference to masturbation…..that’s when she founded the Parents Music Resource Center…..which advocated the mandatory use of a warning label “Parental Advisory: Explicit Lyrics” on the covers of records that have been judged to contain language or lyrical content unsuitable for minors. The recording industry later voluntarily complied with this request.
Music – Movie Clips – 1984 – From the Movie “Purple Rain” – Scene When Prince Performs “Darling Nikki”
In 1985, Prince announced that he would discontinue live performances and music videos after the release of his next album…..when his subsequent recording, Around the World in a Day in 1985 held the # 1 spot on the Billboard 200 for three weeks…..and from that album, the single “Raspberry Beret” reached # 2 on the Billboard Hot 100…..while “Pop Life” reached # 7.
Music – 1985 – From the Album “Around The World In A Day” – Prince Sings – “Around The World In A Day”
Music – Official Music Video – 1985 – From the Album “Around the World in a Day” – Prince & The Revolution Perform – “Raspberry Beret”
Music – 1985 – From the Album “Around The World In A Day” – Prince Sings – “Pop Life”
In 1986, his album Parade reached # 3 on the Billboard 200 and # 2 on the R&B charts…..with the 1st single, “Kiss”, with the video choreographed by Louis Falco reached # 1 on the Billboard Hot 100…..as the song was originally written for a side project called Mazarati. In the same year, the song “Manic Monday”, written by Prince and recorded by the Bangles, reached # 2 on the Hot 100 chart. The album Parade served as the soundtrack for Prince’s 2nd film, Under the Cherry Moon in 1986…..when Prince directed and starred in the movie…..which also featured Kristin Scott Thomas…..albeit the Parade album went platinum…..while selling two million copies, the film Under the Cherry Moon received a Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Picture…..while being tied with Howard the Duck…..plus Prince received Golden Raspberry Awards for Worst Director, Worst Actor and Worst Original Song for the song “Love or Money”……so, is it fair to say “Raspberry Rain”?!
Music – Official Music Video – 1986 – From the Album “Parade” – Prince & The Revolution in “Girls & Boys”
Music – Official Music Video – 1986 – From the Album “Parade” – Prince & The Revolution in “Mountains”
Music – Official Music Video – 1986 – From the Album “Parade” – Prince & The Revolution in “Kiss”
Music – 1986 – From the Album “Parade” – Prince Sings – “Anotherloverholenyohead”
In 1986, Prince began a series of live performances called the Hit n Run – Parade Tour. After the tour Prince disbanded the Revolution and fired Wendy & Lisa…..that’s when Brown Mark quit the band…..as keyboardist Doctor Fink remained….then Prince recruited his new band members with Miko Weaver on guitar, Atlanta Bliss on trumpet and Eric Leeds on saxophone. Prior to the disbanding of the Revolution, Prince was working on two separate projects, the Revolution album Dream Factory and a solo effort, Camille. Unlike the three previous band albums, Dream Factory included input from the band members and featured songs with lead vocals by Wendy & Lisa. The Camille project saw Prince create a new androgynous persona primarily singing in a sped-up, female-sounding voice. With the dismissal of the Revolution, Prince consolidated material from both shelved albums, along with some new songs, into a three-LP album to be titled Crystal Ball. Warner Bros. forced Prince to trim the triple album to a double album, and Sign o’ the Times was released on March 31, 1987.
Music – Tour Concert – 1986 – A Concert Post Production Special – “Prince: Hit N Run Tour Boston, Metro” Entire Concert
Music – Official Music Video – 1987 – From the Album “Sign ‘o the Times” – Prince Sings – “U Got The Look”
Music – Live Concert – 2000 – Prince – Hit N Run Tour – Academy Of Music, Philadelphia – 11th November 2000 – Entire Concert
Music – 1988 – Prince – “Good Love” – Original Version
The album peaked at # 6 on the Billboard 200 albums chart. The 1st single, “Sign o’ the Times”, charted at # 3 on the Hot 100…..then the follow-up single, “If I Was Your Girlfriend”, charted at # 67 on the Hot 100…..but went to # 12 on R&B chart…..while the 3rd single, a duet with Sheena Easton, “U Got the Look”, charted at # 2 on the Hot 100…..and # 11 on the R&B chart…..while the final single, “I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man”, finished at # 10 on Hot 100 and # 14 on the R&B chart.
Music – Official Music Video – 1987 – From the Album “Sign O’ The Times” – Prince Sings – “Sign O’ The Times”
Music – 1987 – From the Album “Sign O’ The Times” – Prince Sings – “If I Was Your Girlfriend”
Music – 1987 – From the Album “Sign O’ The Times” – Prince Sings – “I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man”
It was named the top album of the year by the Pazz & Jop critics’ poll and sold 3.2 million copies. In Europe, it performed well, and Prince promoted the album overseas with a lengthy tour. Putting together a new backing band from the remnants of the Revolution, Prince added bassist Levi Seacer Jr., keyboardist Boni Boyer, and dancer/choreographer Cat Glover to go with new drummer Sheila E and holdovers Miko Weaver, Doctor Fink, Eric Leeds, Atlanta Bliss, and the Bodyguards (Jerome, Wally Safford, and Greg Brooks) for the Sign o’ the Times Tour. The Sign o’ the Times tour was a success overseas, with Warner Bros. and Prince’s managers wanting to bring it to the US to promote sales of the album. Prince balked at a full US tour, as he was ready to produce a new album. As a compromise, the last two nights of the tour were filmed for release in movie theaters. The film quality was deemed subpar, and reshoots were performed at Prince’s Paisley Park studios. The film Sign o’ the Times was released on November 20, 1987. The film got better reviews than Under the Cherry Moon, but its box-office receipts were minimal, and it quickly left theaters.
Movie & Music – Official Trailer – 1986 – For the Movie “Under The Cherry Moon” – Starring Prince + Kristine Scott Thomas + Jerome Benton
The next album intended for release was The Black Album. More instrumental and funk- and R&B-themed than recent releases, The Black Album also saw Prince experiment with hip hop on the songs “Bob George” and “Dead on It”. Prince was set to release the album with a monochromatic black cover with only the catalog number printed, but after 500,000 copies had been pressed, Prince had a spiritual epiphany that the album was evil and had it recalled. It was later released by Warner Bros. as a limited edition album in 1994.
Music – 1987 – From “The Black Album” – Prince Sings – “Bob George”
Music – 1987 – From “The Black Album” – Prince Sings – “Dead On It”
Prince went back in the studio for eight weeks to record the album Lovesexy ….which was released on May 10, 1988…..as this album serves as a spiritual opposite to the dark The Black Album…..when every song is a solo effort by Prince, except “Eye No”…..which was recorded with his backing band at the time. Lovesexy reached # 11 on the Billboard 200…..and # 5 on the R&B albums chart…..when the lead single, “Alphabet St.”, peaked at # 8 on the Hot 100…..and # 3 on the R&B chart after selling 750,000 copies. Prince again took his post-Revolution backing band (minus the Bodyguards) on a three-leg, 84-show Lovesexy World Tour…..albeit the shows were well-received by huge crowds…..but they failed to make a net profit due to the expensive sets and props.
Music – 1988 – From the Album “Lovesexy” – Prince Sings – “Alphabet St.”
In 1989, Prince appeared on Madonna’s studio album Like a Prayer, co-writing and singing the duet “Love Song”…..while playing electric guitar on the songs “Like a Prayer”, “Keep It Together” and “Act of Contrition”. He also began work on several musical projects, including Rave Unto the Joy Fantastic and early drafts of his Graffiti Bridge film…..but both were put on hold when he was asked by Batman (1989) director Tim Burton to record several songs for the upcoming live-action adaptation…..so, Prince went into the studio and produced an entire nine-track album that Warner Bros. released on June 20, 1989…..when Batman peaked at # 1 on the Billboard 200…..while selling 4.3 million copies. The single “Batdance” topped the Billboard Hot 100 and R&B charts…..when the single “The Arms of Orion”, with Sheena Easton, charted at # 36…..and “Partyman” (also featuring the vocals of Prince’s then-girlfriend, nicknamed Anna Fantastic) charted at # 18 on the Hot 100…..and at No. 5 on the R&B chart, while the love ballad “Scandalous!” went to # 5 on the R&B chart. Prince had to sign away all publishing rights to the songs on the album to Warner Bros. as part of the deal to do the soundtrack.
Music – Official Music Video – 1989 – From the Album “Batman” – Prince Sings – “Batdance”
Music – Official Music Video – 1989 – From the Album “Batman” – Prince Sings – “The Arms of Orion”
Music – Official Music Video Extended Version – 1989 – From the Album “Batman” – Prince Sings – “Partyman”
Music – Official Music Video Extended Version – 1989 – From the Album “Batman” – Prince Sings – “Scandalous”
In 1990, Prince went back on tour with a revamped band for his back-to-basics Nude Tour…..so, with the departures of Boni Boyer, Sheila E., the horns and Cat…..that’s when Prince brought in keyboardist Rosie Gaines, drummer Michael Bland and dancing trio the Game Boyz (Tony M., Kirky J., and Damon Dickson). The European and Japanese tour was a financial success with a short, greatest hits setlist. As the year progressed, Prince finished production on his fourth film, Graffiti Bridge in 1990…..plus the album of the same name. Initially, Warner Bros. was reluctant to fund the film, but with Prince’s assurances it would be a sequel to Purple Rain…..as well as the involvement of the original members of the Time, the studio gave the OK to the project…..which was released August 20, 1990…..while reaching # 6 on the Billboard 200 and R&B albums chart. The single “Thieves in the Temple” reached # 6 on the Hot 100 and # 1 on the R&B chart…..with “Round and Round” placing at # 12 on the US charts and # 2 on the R&B charts…..when the song featured the teenage Tevin Campbell (who also had a role in the film) on lead vocals. The film, released on November 20, 1990, was a box-office flop, grossing $4.2 million. After the release of the film and album, the last remaining members of the Revolution, Miko Weaver, and Doctor Fink, left Prince’s band.
Movie & Music – Official Movie Trailer – 1990 – For the Movie “Graffiti Bridge” Staring Prince + Morris Day + Jerome Benton + The Time + Mavis Staples + George Clinton + Ingrid Chavez + Tevin Campbell
Music – Official Music Video – 1990 – For the Album “Graffiti Bridge” – Prince – “Thieves In The Temple”
Movie & Music – Official Music Video – 1990 – For the Movie “Graffiti Bridge” – Featuring Tevin Campbell Singing “Round and Round”
1991 began with a performance in Rock in Rio II and marked the debut of Prince’s new band, the New Power Generation. With guitarist Miko Weaver and long-time keyboardist Doctor Fink gone, Prince added bass player Sonny T., Tommy Barbarella on keyboards and a brass section known as the Hornheads to go along with Levi Seacer (taking over on guitar), Rosie Gaines, Michael Bland and the Game Boyz…..while receiving significant input from his band members, Diamonds and Pearls was released on October 1, 1991 …..which reached # 3 on the Billboard 200 album chart…..as the album saw four hit singles released in the United States…..with“Gett Off” peaking at # 21 on the Hot 100 and # 6 on the R&B charts…..which was followed by “Cream”…..while giving Prince his 5th US # 1 single. The title track “Diamonds and Pearls” became the album’s 3rd single, reaching # 3 on the Hot 100 and the top spot on the R&B charts…..while “Money Don’t Matter 2 Night” peaked at # 23 and # 14 on the Hot 100 and R&B charts respectively.
Music – Official Music Video – 1991 – For the Album “Diamonds and Pearls” – Prince & The New Power Generation – “Gett Off”
Music – Live in Concert – 2004 – Live At Webster Hall – Prince – “Cream”
Music – Official Music Video – 1991 – For the Album “Diamonds and Pearls” – Prince & The New Power Generation – “Diamonds and Pearls”
Music – Official Music Video – 1991 – For the Album “Diamonds and Pearls” – Prince & The New Power Generation – “Money Don’t Matter 2 Night”
In 1992, Prince released his 14th studio album…..which was the 2nd to feature the New Power Generation…..as it bore only an unpronounceable symbol on the cover (later copyrighted as “Love Symbol #2”) as its title…… when the symbol was explained as being a combination of the symbols for male (♂) and female (♀)……while Warner Bros. wanted “7” to be the 1st single…..but Prince fought to release “My Name Is Prince”…..as he believed its “hip-hoppery” would appeal to the audience that had purchased his previous album…..so, Prince got his way, but “My Name Is Prince” reached # 36 on the Billboard Hot 100 and # 23 on the R&B chart…..and the follow-up single, “Sexy MF”, charted at # 66 on the Hot 100 and # 76 on the R&B chart …..while “7” reached # 7. The album, later referred to as Love Symbol, peaked at # 5 on the Billboard 200 and went on to sell 2.8 million copies worldwide.
Music – Official Music Video – 1992 – For the Album “Love Symbol” – Prince & The New Power Generation – “My Name Is Prince”
Music – Official Music Video – 1992 – For the Album “Love Symbol” – Prince & The New Power Generation – “Sexy MF”
Music – Official Music Video – 1992 – For the Album “Love Symbol” – Prince & The New Power Generation – “7”
After failed attempts in 1990 and 1991, Warner Bros. released a greatest hits compilation with the three-disc The Hits/The B-Sides in 1993. The first two discs were also sold separately as The Hits 1 and The Hits 2. The collection features the majority of Prince’s hit singles (with the exception of “Batdance” and other songs that appeared on the Batman soundtrack), and several previously hard-to-find recordings, including B-sides from across Prince’s career and previously unreleased tracks such as the Revolution-recorded “Power Fantastic” and a live recording of “Nothing Compares 2 U” with Rosie Gaines. Two new songs, “Pink Cashmere” and “Peach”, were chosen as promotional singles.
Music – 1993 – From the Album “The Hits / The B-Sides” – Prince – “Power Fantastic”
Music – Live in Concert – 1999 – From the Album “The Hits / The B-Sides” – Live at Paisley Park Prince – “Nothing Compares 2 U”
Music – Official Music Video – 1993 – For the Album “The Hits / The B-Sides” – Prince – “Pink Casmere”
Music – 1993 – From the Album “The Hits / The B-Sides” – Prince – “Peach”
In 1993, in rebellion against Warner Bros., which refused to release Prince’s enormous backlog of music at a steady pace, Prince formally adopted the “Love Symbol” as his stage name. To use the symbol in print media, Warner Bros. organized a mass mailing of floppy disks with a custom font. At this time, Prince was often referred to as “the Artist Formerly Known as Prince” or “the Artist”.
Music & Talk Shows – 1999 – CNN’s Larry King Live – Entire Interview – With The Artist Formerly Known As Prince
Music – Live Concert – 2004 – The Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony – Live on Stage – Prince + Tom Petty + Steve Winwood + Jeff Lynne et al Tribute to George Harrison – “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” – Featuring an Epic Prince Guitar Riff at the End
In 1994, Prince began to release albums in quick succession as a means of releasing himself from his contractual obligations to Warner Bros. He also began appearing with the word “slave” written on his face. He believed Warner Bros. was intent on limiting his artistic freedom by insisting he release albums more sporadically….. plus, he them for the poor commercial performance of Love Symbol…..while claiming they had marketed it insufficiently. It was out of these developments that the aborted The Black Album was officially released, seven years after its initial recording. The “new” release was already in wide circulation as a bootleg…..so, Warner Bros. then succumbed to Prince’s wishes to release an album of new material, Come.
Music – Official Music Video – 1994 – For the Album “Love Symbol” – Prince & The New Power Generation – “Love 2 the 9’s”
Music – 2001 – From the Album “The Black Album” – Prince Sings – “Le Grind”
Music – 1994 – From the Album “Come” – Prince Sings – “Letitgo”
Music – 1994 – From the Album “Come” – Prince Sings – “Pheremone”
Prince pushed to have his next album, The Gold Experience, released simultaneously with Love Symbol–era material. Warner Bros. allowed the single “The Most Beautiful Girl in the World” to be released via a small, independent distributor, Bellmark Records, in February 1994. The release reached # 3 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and # 1 in many other countries, but it did not prove to be a model for subsequent releases. Warner Bros. still resisted releasing The Gold Experience, fearing poor sales and citing “market saturation” as a defense. When released in September 1995, The Gold Experience reached the top 10 of the Billboard 200 initially. The album is not currently in print due to an ongoing plagiarism case relating to “The Most Beautiful Girl in the World” outlined below…..with digital distributors excluding the song in question from the album. An Italian court ruled in 2003 that “The Most Beautiful Girl in the World” plagiarized the song “Takin’ Me to Paradise” by Bruno Bergonzi and Michele Vicino. Bergonzi and Vicino won on appeal in 2007. The third and final sentence, by the Court of Cassation of Rome, was dated May 2015, although the international case is ongoing. Italian collecting society SIAE recognizes Bergonzi and Vicino as the authors of the music for “The Most Beautiful Girl in the World”.
Music – Official Music Video – 1995 – For the Album “The Gold Experience” – Prince Sings – “Gold”
Music – 1995 – From the Album “The Gold Experience” – Prince Sings – “P. Control”
Music – 1995 – From the Album “The Gold Experience” – Prince Sings – “The Most Beautiful Girl In The World”
Chaos and Disorder, released in 1996, was Prince’s final album of new material for Warner Bros., as well as one of his least commercially successful releases.
Music – 1996 – From the Album “Chaos and Disorder” – Prince Sings – “Chaos and Disorder”
Music – Official Music Video – 1996 – For the Album “Chaos and Disorder” – Prince Sings – “The Same December”
Free of any further contractual obligations to Warner Bros., Prince attempted a major comeback later that year with the release of Emancipation, a 36-song, 3-CD set (each disc was exactly 60 minutes long). The album was released via his own NPG Records with distribution through EMI. To publish his songs on Emancipation, Prince did not use Controversy Music – ASCAP, which he had used for all his records since 1981, but rather used Emancipated Music Inc. – ASCAP.
Music – 1996 – From the Album “Emancipation” – The Artist Formerly Known As Prince – “Friend, Lover, Sister, Mother/Wife
Music – 1996 – From the Album “Emancipation” – The Artist Formerly Known As Prince – “Somebody’s Somebody”
Music – 1996 – From the Album “Emancipation” – The Artist Formerly Known As Prince – “Soul Sanctuary”
Emancipation was certified Platinum by the RIAA. It is the first Prince record featuring covers of other artists’ songs: Joan Osborne’s top ten hit song of 1995 “One of Us”; “Betcha by Golly Wow!” (written by Thom Bell and Linda Creed); “I Can’t Make You Love Me” (written by James Allen Shamblin II and Michael Barry Reid); and “La-La (Means I Love You)” (written by Thom Bell and William Hart).
Music – 1996 – From the Album “Emancipation” – The Artist Formerly Known As Prince – “I Can’t Make U Love Me”
Music – 1996 – From the Album “Emancipation” – The Artist Formerly Known As Prince – “Betcha By Golly Wow!”
Music – 1996 – From the Album “Emancipation” – The Artist Formerly Known As Prince – “La La (Means I Love You”
Music – 1996 – From the Album “Emancipation” – The Artist Formerly Known As Prince – “One Of Us”
Prince released Crystal Ball, a five-CD collection of unreleased material, in 1998…..when the distribution of this album was disorderly…..with some fans pre-ordering the album on his website up to a year before it was shipped….. as these pre-orders were delivered months after the record had gone on sale in retail stores…..while the retail edition has only four discs, as it is missing the Kamasutra disc. There are also two different packaging editions for retail…..with one being a four-disc sized jewel case with a white cover and the Love Symbol in a colored circle while the other contains all four discs in a round translucent snap jewel case. The discs are the same, as is the CD jacket. The Newpower Soul album was released three months later…..when his collaborations on Chaka Khan’s “Come 2 My House” and Larry Graham’s GCS2000, both released on the NPG Records label around the same time as Newpower Soul…..which were promoted by live appearances on Vibe with Sinbad and the NBC Today show’s Summer Concert Series.
Music – 1998 – Live In Concert in London – Prince & Chaka Khan Duet – “Sweet Thing”
Music – 1998 – From the Album “New Power Soul” – Prince – “Mad Sex”
In 1999, Prince once again signed with a major label, Arista Records, to release a new record, Rave Un2 the Joy Fantastic. A few months earlier, Warner Bros. had also released The Vault: Old Friends 4 Sale, a collection of unreleased material recorded by Prince throughout his career.
Music – Official Music Video – 1999 – From the Album “Rave Un2 the Joy Fantastic” – Prince Sings – “The Greatest Romance Ever Sold”
Music – 1999 – From the Album “The Vault: Old Friends 4 Sale” – Prince Sings – “5 Women”
The pay-per-view concert, Rave Un2 the Year 2000, was broadcast on December 31, 1999, and consisted of footage from the December 17 and 18 concerts of his 1999 tour…..as the concert featured appearances by guest musicians including Lenny Kravitz, George Clinton, Jimmy Russell and The Time…..and was released to home video the following year.
Music – Live In Concert – 2000 – A Renzo Cortez Production Special – For the Album “Rave Un2 the Year 2000” – Prince & The New Power Generation – Live on Stage
On May 16, 2000, Prince stopped using the Love Symbol as his name…..now that his publishing contract with Warner/Chappell had expired. In a press conference, he stated that after being freed from undesirable relationships associated with the name “Prince”, he would revert to using his real name. Nevertheless, Prince continued to use the symbol as a logo and on album artwork while playing a Love Symbol–shaped guitar. For several years following the release of Rave Un2 the Joy Fantastic, Prince primarily released new music through his Internet subscription service, NPGOnlineLtd.com….. which later became NPGMusicClub.com. Albums from this period are Rave In2 the Joy Fantastic in 2001…..The Rainbow Children also in 2001…..One Nite Alone in 2002…..Xpectation in 2003…..C-Note in 2004…..along with The Chocolate Invasion also in 2004…..as well as The Slaughterhouse in 2004.
Music – 2001 – From the Album “Rave In2 The Joy Fantastic” – Prince – “The Greatest Romance Ever Sold”
Music – 2001 – From the Album “The Rainbow Children” – Prince – “The Rainbow Children”
Music – 2002 – From the Album “One Nite Alone” – Prince – “A Case of U”
Music – 2003 – From the Album “Xpectation” – Prince – “Xhalation”
Music – 2003 – From the Album “C-Note” – Prince – “Empty Room”
Music – Official Music Video – 2004 – For the Album “The Chocolate Invasion” – Prince – “U Make My Sun Shine”
Music – 2004 – From the Album “The Slaughterhouse” – Prince – “S & M Groove”
In 2001, Warner Bros. released a 2nd compilation album, The Very Best of Prince…..which contained most of his commercially successful singles from the eighties. In 2002, Prince released his 1st live album, One Nite Alone… Live!, which features performances from the One Nite Alone Tour. The 3-CD box set also includes a disc of “aftershow” music entitled It Ain’t Over!. During this time, Prince sought to engage more effectively with his fan base via the NPG Music Club, pre-concert sound checks, and yearly “celebrations” at Paisley Park, his music studios. Fans were invited into the studio for tours, interviews, discussions and music-listening sessions. Some of these fan discussions were filmed for an unreleased documentary, directed by Kevin Smith.
Music – 2004 – From the 3-CD Boxset “One Night Alone….Tour After Show: It Ain’t Over” – Prince and Friends – “Joy of Redemption”
On February 8, 2004, Prince appeared at the 46th Annual Grammy Awards with Beyoncé in a performance that opened the show, they performed a medley of “Purple Rain”, “Let’s Go Crazy”, “Baby I’m a Star”….. and Beyoncé’s “Crazy in Love”. The following month, Prince was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The award was presented to him by Alicia Keys along with Big Boi and André 3000 of OutKast. As well as performing a trio of his own hits during the ceremony, Prince also participated in a tribute to fellow inductee George Harrison in a rendering of Harrison’s “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”, playing a two-minute guitar solo that ended the song. He also performed the song “Red House” as “Purple House” on the album Power of Soul: A Tribute to Jimi Hendrix. In April 2004, Prince released Musicology through a one-album agreement with Columbia Records. The album rose as high as the top five on some international charts (including the US, UK, Germany, and Australia). The US chart success was assisted by the CDs being included as part of the concert ticket purchase, thereby qualifying each CD (as chart rules then stood) to count toward US chart placement. Three months later, Spin named him the greatest frontman of all time. That same year, Rolling Stone magazine named Prince as the highest-earning musician in the world, with an annual income of $56.5 million, largely due to his Musicology Tour, which Pollstar named as the top concert draw among musicians in the US. He played 96 concerts; the average ticket price for a show was US$61 (equivalent to $95 in 2022). Musicology went on to receive two Grammy wins, for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance for “Call My Name” and Best Traditional R&B Vocal Performance for the title track. Musicology was also nominated for Best R&B Song and Best R&B Album, and “Cinnamon Girl” was nominated for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance. Rolling Stone ranked Prince No. 27 on their list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.
Music & Awards – 2004 – The 46th Grammy Awards Opening Special – Prince & Beyonce Sing – “Purple Rain” + “Let’s Go Crazy” + “Baby I’m a Star” + “Crazy in Love”
Music & Awards – 2005 – The 19th Rock N Roll Hall of Fame Induction Special – “Prince: Inducted by Alicia Keys + Big Boi + André 3000 of OutKast & – As Prince Performs “” + “Let’s Go Crazy” + “You Don’t Have To Be Rich To Be My Girl” + “A 2 Minute Guitar Riff on “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”
Music – 2004 – From the Album “Power of Soul: A Tribute to Jimi Hendrix” – Prince Sings – “Purple House” – A Rare Version of Jimi Hendrix’s “Red House”
Music – Official Music Video – 2004 – From the Album “Musicology” – Prince Sings – “Cinnamon Girl”
Music & Awards – 2004 – The Rock N Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony – Featuring The Acceptance Speech of Prince
NOTE: Prince Part 2 is Next Post