American legendary icon Prince is dead. The singer and pioneer of the Minneapolis Sound died at his Paisley Park resident Thursday April 21. He was 57.
The singer, songwriter, producer born Prince Rogers Nelson was a multi-talented artist and an exemplary innovator. He would play up to 20 different instruments and creatively make excellent music while fusing different genres embodying the freedom in making music.
Last week Friday April 15, his plane was forced to make an emergency landing over health reasons; reportedly the icon was “fighting the flu”. The artist had cancelled some two shows even as he performed his gig on that weekend, April 16.
Prince was an icon who influenced a wide range of artists with inclinations to different genres. The singer was a rock, rnb, funk and pop powerhouse and was known to chart his own ways when it came to music often falling out or disagreeing with set out music standards. He set his own rules when it came to his music and many at times his sound would come to be accepted in the popular culture.
Prince drew a lot of influence from the late legendary guitarist Jimi Hendrix and made music entirely on his own hence the tag the ‘one man band’. Though his hit songs revolved around relationships and his passionate hits about sex, the singer also tacked social issues in his records.
Some of Prince’s hit records include “Purple Rain” the title song of his 1984 album, “Kiss”, “I feel You”, “I Wanna Be Your Lover” “Little Red Corvette”, “Lets Go Crazy” among others. His 1982 album titled 199 catapulted his career to international recognition. His first album “For You” was released in 1978.
Prince penned Sinead O’Connor’s 1990 version of “Nothing Compares 2U” which went on to be a chart topping release.
His catalogue includes more than 30 albums released as a solo artist and with groups. He sold more than 100m records during his career and collected 7 Grammy awards. 2004 saw the singer inducted into the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame. Back in 1984 he won an Oscar for the score to the movie “Purple Rain” which he also starred in.
One of his greatest performances of all time in recent time was at the Super Bowl in 2007.
The singer influence helped build the careers of many artists including: D’Angelo, The Roots and Maxwell among many others.
Prince was married twice first with Mayte Garcia they split in 2000 and Manuela Testolini but parted ways in 2006 much of his private life has always remained a big secret. His parents were jazz artists.
His most recent album HITnRUN was released in 2015 and he was currently on tour promoting the new release.
Tributes have been pouring out on social media since the news of his passing got out; “The news of Prince’s passing is devastating from any way you look at it. He was my friend, my spiritual brother and one of the greatest artists of our time. A creative genius. #Prince” Jazz legend George Benson posted on Facebook
“Prince the doves really are crying now. Listening to your music. Remembering you. #RIPPrince” Oprah posted on twitter “A strong spirit transcends rules,’ Prince once said—and nobody’s spirit was stronger, bolder, or more creative.” —President Obama “This is a sad moment. A really dark day in music history. Too much loss. Just too much”-Black Thought tweeted