Singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Prince Rogers Nelson is dead at age 57.
The Associated Press reports that Prince (June 7, 1958 – April 21, 2016) died today at his home in suburban Minneapolis. His publicist has confirmed the news.
Prince had a recent health scare, being rushed to the hospital last Friday because of flu-related dehydration. But the next day, he made an appearance at Paisley Park dance party and, eerily in retrospect, told the attendees to “Wait a few days before you waste any prayers.”
Prince was best known for songs that helped define the sound of the 80s and his pyrotechnic guitar chops.
But he also was a multi-instrumentalist that made iconic use of synths and other electronic music gear. The sounds of Yamaha DX, Oberheim, Linn LM-1 and other synth classics are all over his hits. More important than the gear, though, was his talent for using them in unique and iconic ways.
Prince recorded more than 40 albums. His hit 1984 album, Purple Rain, sold more than 13 million copies in the US and spent 24 consecutive weeks at the top of the Billboard 200 charts. In 2004, Prince was inducted into the Rock and Roll of Fame.
Prince was active to the end, performing solo ‘Piano & a Microphone’ shows earlier this year.