Prince, the legendary musician who brought us countless hits, such as “Purple Rain” and “When Doves Cry,” has died. He was 57.
The singer’s publicist confirmed the tragic news to The Huffington Post on Thursday.
“It is with profound sadness that I am confirming that the legendary, iconic performer, Prince Rogers Nelson, has died at his Paisley Park residence this morning at the age of 57,” the rep said in a statement. “There are no further details as to the cause of death at this time.”
TMZ was the first to report the news.
Earlier this week, the performer was treated for the flu after his plane made an emergency landing.
A representative for Prince told TMZ that the singer was feeling under the weather during his shows last week and began to feel worse on the plane. After the emergency landing, he was treated at a hospital and released three hours later.
Born Prince Rogers Nelson (after the Prince Rogers Trio) on June 7, 1958 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, the multi-talented performer has been called “one of the most naturally gifted artists of all time
Prince was first signed to a record deal with Warner Bros. Records when he was just a teenager. In 1978, he released his debut album, “For You,” followed by “Dirty Mind” in 1980 and “Controversy” in 1981.
But it was his 1982 album, “1999,” that really thrust Prince into the spotlight. The album, which went platinum, featured the Top 10 singles “Little Red Corvette,” “Delirious,” and of course, “1999.”
In 1984, Prince starred in “Purple Rain,” a film for which he created the soundtrack and original score. He won an Academy Award for Best Original Song Score for the movie. “Purple Rain,” the album, which featured the songs “When Doves Cry” and “Let’s Go Crazy” (as well as the title track), spent 24 weeks on the top of the charts and sold over 13 million copies.
Prince would go on to act in a number of other films, including “Under the Cherry Moon” (1986) and “Graffiti Bridge” (1990), and appear in a 2014 episode of “New Girl.”
By 1989, with the release of his 11th album, “Batman,” Prince had become one of the most successful pop artists in America. As a songwriter, he also gave us some of the most iconic pop songs in history, including 1990’s “Nothing Compares 2 U,” made popular by Sinead O’Connor,” and 1986’s “Manic Monday,” which was performed by “The Bangles.”
Prince gained success at a time when stars like Madonna, Bruce Springsteen and Michael Jackson were dominating the industry, yet thanks to his ability to constantly transform, he managed to carve out a unique spot for himself.
He went so far as to change his name to the unpronounceable symbol O(+> in 1993, which Rolling Stone dubbed as one of “the boldest career moves in rock history.” The artist used the moniker until 2000. Fans and media alike were confused by the symbol, and often referred to the singer as “the artist formerly known as Prince.” The icon famously referenced his symbolic name with his guitar during an epic Super Bowl Performance years later in 2007. The performance is hands down one of the most memorable in Super Bowl history.
After a few years of staying out of the spotlight, Prince performed at the Grammys with Beyoncé in February 2004. The two played a medley of hits, including “Purple Rain” and “Let’s Go Crazy,” along with Beyoncé’s “Crazy in Love.” The following month, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
In early 2006, Prince appeared as the musical guest on “Saturday Night Live,” along with his protégée, R&B singer Tamar, while promoting his album “3121.” That same year, he won a Golden Globe for “Song of the Heart,” which he wrote and performed for the film “Happy Feet.”
In the following years, Prince released “Planet Earth” in 2007 and the triple CD set “LOtUSFLOW3R” in 2009. Between 2010 and 2012, the artist toured all over Europe, America, Australia and Canada, where in 2015, he returned for a surprise concert.
He will be sorely missed, but never forgotten.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.