Prince is the All-American showman who almost pioneered a genre entirely of his own. He is a songwriter, an actor, multi-instrumentalist, and his music fits into many categories worth labelling: rock, R&B, soul, funk, hip hop, disco, psychedelia, jazz, and pop. Such is his popularity he has sold in excess of 100 million albums worldwide and stunned audiences in hundreds of live shows. He is reported to be worth a massive $250 million.
He has been on the music scene and at the top of it for over thirty years. He built his name as an experimenter, a musician who was willing to push out old ideas and bring in his own, regardless of whether people liked it or not. He is a true music man in that sense; playing for the love and for himself. Born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Prince is said to have developed a keen interest in music at a young age — writing his first song when he was seven-years-old; eventually releasing his debut album in 1978 called For You.
Then his fame and his bank balance started to rocket.
Owing to his huge success was his 1979 album, which was more than well-received, it went platinum most likely because the songs: Why You Wanna Treat Me So Bad? and I Wanna Be Your Lover — were massive hits that drove the world and Prince’s bank manager crazy.
It was perhaps his 1987 solo album Sign "O" the Times that won him the most critical accolades that he enjoys even today. A combination of charisma, supple hips, a high voice, with sexual lyrics that easily fitted into many genres and he’s noted as one of the best-selling artists of all time. Even the esteemed Rolling Stone magazine ranked Prince at 27 of 100 on its 100 Greatest Artists of All Time. That’s some serious accolade there.
If that isn’t confirmation enough, then how about the seven Grammy Awards he’s won, the Golden Globe, an Academy Award — you name it, Prince has done it; won it; earned it. He is also — believe it or not — a talented basketball player (and yes he is short at 5ft 2”, but he is reported to have been a keen player for one of the best teams in Minnesota.
Prince is also notoriously hard to please. When he was on a London tour in the late 80s, and poor Prince — who belongs to the Jehovah’s Witness faith — could not get his baby grand piano up the stairs of the prestigious Chelsea Harbour Hotel. So, problem-solver Prince managed to convince the staff there to hire a crane and had the damn thing brought it in through a window. Money can solve problems after all. Apparently.
It’s things like this that perhaps go some way in explains his ex-wife’s comment when she said: “I remember it being overwhelming and weird. Our entire time together was amazing and surreal.”
Sure, it certainly sounds like it could be that. But it must have been a lot of fun, especially with all that money flowing around.