Prince Dead at Age 57. A Prince Among His Queens, He Championed Female Musicians


Prince at the Coachella Festival in 2008
Prince at the Coachella Festival in 2008

The world mourns as one of the most talented and revolutionary superstars, Prince Rogers Nelson, AKA Prince was announced dead in his estate on April, 21st 2016; he was 57. The award-winning music artist was touring the US earlier this month but experienced health complications forcing him to postpone an event in Atlanta, Georgia. Nevertheless, this didn’t stop him from performing two acts in one day to make up for delays. Last week, Prince’s private jet made an unscheduled stop in Moline, Illinois for dealing with flu-like symptoms several weeks on end. People couldn’t help but worry but he assured his guests at a party hosted on his estate last Saturday that they should, “wait a few days before [wasting] any prayers [on his health].” Just 4 days later, he was found not breathing in his elevator and medics were unable to revive him. With his recent passing, spectators are wondering if their prayers didn’t make it in time.

A Musical Genius

Prince’s talent was obvious from the start. Being signed to Warner Brothers at the age of 19, he sang, composed, and played all of the instruments on his debut album, “For You,” in 1978. The album “Purple Rain,” was released in 1984 jumping to #1 on the charts and remaining for 24 weeks. He sold 13 million copies and released a motion picture musical under the same title which made nearly $70 million at the box office and won an Oscar. Shortly after, Paisley Park Records became his own independent label where he was able to have total control over his creative process and gave him an increased degree of management responsibilities. A decade later and still signed to Warner Brothers, their relationship was on thin ice and Prince publicized the controversy appearing to concerts with the word “SLAVE” written on his face for fans to see. The two entities parted ways in 1996 birthing a new chapter in his career while creating an innovative marketing atmosphere unheard of for its time.

Prince and His Queens

In a largely male-dominated industry, Prince provided genuine support and mentored dozens of female music artists throughout his career. He started as the only male member of his band and during this time, granted his bandmates total control to express themselves and participate in what many would’ve considered “jobs reserved for men.” Prince enabled a level of freedom that leading execs of the time were unwilling to grant female entertainers. Rather than depicting his female companions as objects, they were glorified as equals and played a powerful role in his image. The sensual nature of Prince’s brand elevated his appreciation for women and showcased his female comrades during performances, recording studios, films and music videos. Employing and enjoying the relations between women was his forte and collaborated with a handful of female music directors, audio engineers, dancers, and vocalists. Last September, Prince stated 9 out of his 10 favorite artists currently were women demonstrating he still held a place in his heart for female expression.

Prince Changed The Music Industry

Prince launched NPG Music Club in 2001 which was an internet-based platform granting nearly half a million subscribers access to his exclusive music. In 2007, the intended UK freebie “Planet Earth” was released; an album that fell short due to lack of distribution. Later in 2009, he created another web-based platform called LotusFlow3r offering a 3-disc album via download or postal shipping. He rekindled his relationship with Warner Brothers in 2013 in exchange for ownership of his masters and announced his newest album, “HitNRun” exclusively through the streaming network, Tidal, last year. Through trials and tribulations, the iconic superstar never strayed from his principles that embodied equality and freedom for all.

Cause of Death Might be Related to a Prescription Drug Overdose

Although his passing has been subsequently linked to an alleged habit for prescription drugs, health officials have not released any details on the cause of death. He will be sorely missed and remembered as a pioneer of free thinking and female equality. His creative edge and business ambitions were ahead of his time. The legacy of Prince will live on through his music and the symbol that sent shockwaves across the globe will be felt for decades to come.

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