It was remarkable how popular Prince was, for an artist so eccentric and hard to classify. Shortly after playing the Super Bowl halftime show, the biggest ticket in the U.S., with the crowd belting out his hit “Purple Rain” while the sky poured down on them, he sold his entire catalog to Sony, including exclusive rights to the use of his name, to become “The artist formerly known as Prince.”
It turned out to be a savvy move, one of the best deals for any artist in the music industry, back when the going was good. Nobody doubted the value of the deal. For years after it, he was identified in print solely by a quirky icon of the sexes and a trumpet, one of the many instruments he could play as a child prodigy. Incredibly, media complied. His lyrics were just as inspired as his music, with great stories such as “I could never take the place of your man” or the very appropriate one on our headline, “Sometimes it snows in April/sometimes I feed so sad”. Just to confirm he was from the future, another of his songs asked, “Where will I be in 2045?” Find out more by listening to that catalog for a couple hours.