Prince’s third album “Dirty Mind,” released in 1980, was his breakthrough. People gravitated to the effortless blend of thick funk, guitar rock, pop harmonies and sexy soul.
Prince’s fifth studio album “1999” — featuring “Little Red Corvette” and the title track — brought Prince to household name status. Next up was “Purple Rain,” which made him a timeless superstar. The album spent 24 weeks at number one and sold ten million copies in the U.S. alone. The album was a soundtrack to the film of the same name, now a cult classic.
Prince won three Grammy awards in 1985, including Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group With Vocals, with his band Revolution, for “Purple Rain,” and Best Album of Original Score for TV or Movies, “Purple Rain."
On top of the world, Prince’s next albums were “Around the World in a Day”
– featuring the lovable “Raspberry Beret”– and “Sign o’ the Times.” These albums were less radio-friendly and explored Prince’s eclectic, almost psychedelic sound.
Prince dropped his band, the Revolution, and created the New Power Generation in 1991. His first album with his new band was “Diamonds and Pearls,” which was his biggest commercial success in years.
Prince legally changed his artistic name to an unpronouncable symbol in 1993 after a legal battle with his record contract.
Prince has won six Grammy awards to date, an Academy award and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Hame. He has produced 31 albums to date.
Prince is known for his unique style, undeniable charm, and sexy way. His music has been included in countless baby-making music playlists through the decades.
Beyonce performed “Purple Rain” with Prince at the 46th Grammy Awards in 2004.
Prince performed at the 10th Anniversary Essence Music Festival at the Superdome on July 2, 2004 in New Orleans. (Got tickets for this year’s fest?)
Rolling Stone magazine named Prince #28 on their list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.
Prince continues to release albums, now in his fourth decade of music-making. Last year Prince dropped a three-disc CD called “Lotusflower,” which debuted at #2 on the charts and sold 168,000 copies in just the first week.
Happy 52nd birthday, Prince!
Prince performs during the ‘Welcome 2 America’ tour in California.