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The Artist Formerly Known As Prince

Prince at Coachella

Prince At Coachella (image By penner, CC BY-SA 3.0, )

Prince. The Artist Formerly Known As. The Symbol. Prince Rogers Nelson. Born June 7, 1958 and passed April 21, 2016.

You may have known the artist from songs such as Purple Rain, Raspberry Beret, When Doves Cry and 1999. The man was a singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist (guitar, bass, drums and keyboard), record producer, actor and film director.  He stared in his own movie Purple Rain in 1984, which is a cult classic. In 1997 he was a guest star on Muppets Tonight.  In 1993 he changed his name to the “Love Symbol” which was non gender specific.

One of the best-selling artists of all time, he has sold over 100 million records, won 7 Grammy Awards and was inducted into the Rock Hall of Fame in 2004. Rolling Stone ranked Prince at 27 on its list of Greatest Artists of All Time.

I grew up listening to his music and my heart breaks knowing we have lost another legend. But he will live on in his music and movies now and for all time.


BlueWater Comics produced a Prince bio comic as part of their Fame series. Written by Michael L Frizell. Penciled by Ernesto Lovera. Colored by Ester Salguero. Lettered by David Hopkins. Cover by Iordan Terziiski.

Fame: Prince
BlueWater Comics

Purple Rain interior image from Fame: Prince comic (Image: BlueWater)

Purple Rain interior image from Fame: Prince comic (Image: BlueWater)

This tribute comic starts at the very beginning. Written from the perspective of Prince himself, it takes us on the journey from young boy struggling with bullies and expectations to budding musician to MTV Pioneer, superstar, and movie star. I like that it touches on his desire to keep to himself, his shyness, but also how he wrote for other singers, giving more of his songs a chance to shine even when he wanted to take a step back. I also like that they didn’t make a show of the loss of his son, just a mention on a dark panel.

Obviously, the comic doesn’t touch on his death as it was published a while ago but it’s a pretty nice encapsulation of his life. For me, the art leaves a little something to be desired but I think that’s par for the course when looking at an illustrated version of a real person’s life. It isn’t like photographs, the shapes and lines change, fine details get pushed aside for the broader aesthetic but all in all, it’s ok. As readers, we all know who these faces are.

My heart breaks a little, knowing this genius, and he was a musical genius, won’t ever grace the stage again. The news tells me there is a vault of more than 2000 unreleased songs and I hope the public gets to hear them someday but I also hope that Prince gave permission for their release.



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