Widely acclaimed pop superstar Prince was found dead at his home on Thursday April 21, 2016. He is one of the most influential musicians of his time with memorable hits such as “Let’s Go Crazy” and “Little Red Corvette,” and “When Doves Cry.” The Minneapolis native, born Prince Rogers Nelson was 57 years old.
Yvette Noel-Schure, Prince’s former publicist told The Associated Press that the musician died at his home in Chanhassen. No further details were released to the public. The music icon had cancelled a concert in Atlanta on April 7, after he had the flu. He apologized to all his fans for the cancellation and had scheduled a makeup concert last week.
Prince was both a singer and songwriter and a man of great talent who broke through in the late 1970s with the hits “I Wanna Be Your Lover,” and “Why You Wanna Treat Me So Bad?” His popularity soared over the next decade with albums such as “Purple Rain.” and “1999.”
He was fiercely protective of his artistic development and independence, standing firm with his record company over control of his music, content and his name. Prince famously wrote “slave” on his face in order to stand up against the fact that he did not own his work and he famously battled and then left his label, Warner Bros., before he rejoined the label again.
“What’s happening now is the position that I’ve always wanted to be in,” Prince told the Associate Press in 2014. “I was just trying to get here.”
As a musical and social trailblazer, Prince was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2004.
The Hall’s dedication reads: “He rewrote the rulebook, forging a synthesis of black funk and white rock that served as a blueprint for cutting-edge music in the Eighties,””Prince made dance music that rocked and rock music that had a bristling, funky backbone. From the beginning, Prince and his music were androgynous, sly, sexy and provocative.”
Prince was not only a singer, but a talented songwriter as well. He provided hits for other musicians such as writing Sinead O’Connor’s Nothing Compares 2 U”, Cyndi Lauper’s “When You Were Mine.” and he also wrote the Bangles hit “Manic Monday”
Prince also toured and recorded music right up until his death. Releasing four different albums in the last eighteen months. He performed in Atlanta in a stripped down show that had a mix of his hits such as “Little Red Corvette” and “Purple Rain” and some other samplings from his extensive music library.
The normally reclusive musician seemed to be shedding his past reputation over the years. He hosted a few late-night jam sessions where he celebrated the Minnesota Lynx’s WNBA championship as well as serenading Madonna. He also presented his latest protege, singer Judith Hill.
Last month, he announced that he was writing his memoir, The Beautiful Ones expected to be released in the fall of 2017 by Spiegel & Grau. The publishing house has not released a statement on the status of the book yet.
The memoir was supposed to include stories about Prince’s family, his music as well as the ideas, people and places that shaped him and fired up his creative journey.