He is one of the most enigmatic names in the history of America’s popular music and he will remain that way forever. Prince was found unconscious inside an elevator on April 21, 2016 and was pronounced dead at the scene. He was 57 years old with years of legacy left behind – the Minneapolis rocker’s death is still under investigation.
Now that, we can never hear a new record from Prince or ever get to see him move like a dream onstage, let’s take a look back at his life and find out why he had always been the Prince of hearts.
1. The Prince who was a notorious perfectionist
It is said that there was never a single instrument in the recording studios that Prince wouldn’t play. He’d tirelessly experiment with sounds, instruments and genres such as R&B, pop, rock, funk and soul.
2. The Prince who helped others chase their dreams
He was known for backing young talents that dreamed to be as big as the Prince himself. He has written many a songs that have been made famous by other artists such as The Glamorous Life sung by Sheila E., “Nothing Compares 2 u” by Sinead O’Connor, “I Feel For You” by Chaka Khan and many more.
3. The Prince who was always an enigma
He was not just about international tours and signing autographs. He was a thinking man who led the way to gender fluidity way ahead of his time. The brazen pan-sexuality and his dalliant flirtations with gender norms as he’d say unapologetic, “I’m not a woman. I’m not a man. I’m something that you’ll never understand”.
4. The Prince who was born to be a prince
He was born in a house that belonged to a Jazz pianist who named his son Prince because he wanted his son to be able to do anything. Therefore, since his birth in June 1958, Prince Rogers Nelson, saw his father. John, played the guitar in a jazz band while his mother, Matte, croon for the band. It was only obvious for Prince to take up the guitar as he grew up.
5. The Prince who didn’t have it all peachy as a child
It’s true that he was blessed with a musical family but his parents’ marriage had fallen apart quite early in his childhood. He took up music to cope with the setback and he was just 7 when he learnt to play the piano. By thirteen, Prince was playing the guitars and the drums were only to follow.
6. The Prince and his Purple Rain
He had always been a hit-maker but Prince broke all records with the release of his sixth studio album “Purple Rain”. It is probably the magnum opus of the legendary musician and the album is often regarded as the very best of popular music albums in history. “When Doves Cry” and “Let’s Go Crazy” were the two chief tracks from the album which were chart-busters all over the world.
The movie, “Purple Rain” that lay somewhere between a autobiography and a self-manifested mythology showed Prince as an actor for the first time and it remains to be a cult classic.
7. The Prince who wouldn’t bow down
The best thing about Prince, apart from the music is his rebellion. In such a competitive market, artists seldom take the risk to raise their voices against the corporate sponsors. However, Prince was an animal too big to be fit inside the corporate cages and his battle with the industry biggies such as Warner Bros. was nothing short of legendary.
8. The Prince and his jewels
He was won million hearts, something million awards cannot compare to. However, the world owed its respect to this rock legend. Therefore, it’s not surprising that Prince has seven Grammy awards to his name along with 32 nominations.