Ten months after the death of a legend, Prince’s name has once again been thrust into the spotlight. As of February 12, his classic hits which were once monopolized by Tidal are available to stream on most online music platforms. Not only that, but fans have several future releases to look forward to. On June 9th, a remastered version of Purple Rain will debut alongside two previously unreleased albums featuring songs from Prince’s extensive vault. As if these musical releases weren’t enough to satiate the still mourning public, a documentary about the singer’s career possibly titled “Prince: R U Listening?” will premiere this year. For those unfamiliar with his work, now is the perfect time to get to know Prince as an artist, and as a person.
Born in Minneapolis on June 7, 1958, Prince Rogers Nelson was exposed to music from an early age. Both of his parents were musicians, and he soon figured out how to play guitar, piano, and drums. Following his parents’ divorce, Prince ran away and moved in with his neighbors, later forming his first band with their son Andre. Despite being bullied during his high school years, Prince remained bold and unapologetic as his career took off. This later paid off as his 39 studio albums attracted both critical and audience acclaim, even earning him a spot on the Billboard Top 100 list 47 times and 5 top hits.
Tragically, Prince was found dead in his home last year on April 21. After much speculation about his cause of death, examiners concluded that he accidentally overdosed on fentanyl, one of the strongest pain medications available, which he had been addicted to for some time. The public mourned the loss of such a beloved musician, sharing stories if they knew him, and all the while clinging to his powerful music. Even as the anniversary of his death draws near, we still mourn. The 2017 Grammy’s featured a tribute to Prince, as well as George Michael, another well-known musician who passed away this year.
After all this time, we mourn because of the impact his work has on us, and with the newfound availability of both his beloved hits and new music we have yet to hear, we can celebrate the life of one of music’s most influential giants.