More of his purpleness – Prince
The Revolution and Purple Rain: 1984–87
During this period Prince referred to his band as the Revolution. The band’s name was also printed, in reverse, on the cover of 1999 inside the letter “I” of the word “Prince”. The band consisted of Lisa Coleman and Doctor Fink on keyboards, Bobby Z. on drums, Brown Mark on bass, and Dez Dickerson on guitar. Jill Jones, a backing singer, was also part of The Revolution line up for the 1999 album and tour. Following the 1999 Tour, Dickerson left the group for religious reasons. In the 2003 book Possessed: The Rise and Fall of Prince, author Alex Hahn says that Dickerson was reluctant to sign a three-year contract and wanted to pursue other musical ventures. Dickerson was replaced by Wendy Melvoin, a childhood friend of Coleman. At first the band was used sparsely in the studio but this gradually changed during the mid-1980s.
Prince’s 1984 album Purple Rain sold more than thirteen million copies in the U.S. and spent twenty-four consecutive weeks at No.1 on the Billboard 200 chart. The film of the same name won an Academy Award and grossed more than $80 million in the U.S.
Songs from the film were hits on pop charts around the world, while “When Doves Cry” and “Let’s Go Crazy” reached No.1 and the title track reached No.2 on the Billboard Hot 100. At one point in 1984, Prince simultaneously had the number one album, single, and film in the U.S.; it was the first time a singer had achieved this feat. Prince won the Academy Award for Best Original Song Score for Purple Rain, and the album is ranked 72nd Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Albums of All Time. The album is included on the list of Time magazine’s All-Time 100 Albums.
After Tipper Gore heard her 12-year-old daughter Karenna listening to Prince’s song “Darling Nikki”, she founded the Parents Music Resource Center. The center advocates the mandatory use of a warning label (“Parental Advisory: Explicit Lyrics”) on the covers of records that have been judged to contain language or lyrical content unsuitable for minors. The recording industry later voluntarily complied with this request. Of what is considered the Filthy Fifteen Prince’s compositions appear no. 1 and no. 2, with the fourth position occupied by his protégée Vanity.
In 1985 Prince announced that he would discontinue live performances and music videos after the release of his next album. His subsequent recording Around the World in a Day held the No.1 spot on the Billboard 200 for three weeks.
In 1986 his album Parade reached No.3 on the Billboard 200 and No.2 on the R&B charts. The first single, “Kiss”, with the video choreographed by Louis Falco, reached No.1 on the Billboard Hot 100. The song was originally written for a side project called Mazarati. That same year the song “Manic Monday”, which was written by Prince and recorded by The Bangles, reached No.2 on the Hot 100 chart.
The album Parade served as the soundtrack for Prince’s second film, Under the Cherry Moon. Prince directed and starred in the movie, which also featured Kristin Scott Thomas. He received the Golden Raspberry Award for his efforts in acting and directing. In 1986, Prince began a series of sporadic live performances called the Hit n Run – Parade Tour. The European tour went to Europe in the summer and ended that September in Japan.
After the tour Prince abolished The Revolution, fired Wendy & Lisa and replaced Bobby Z. with Sheila E. Brown Mark quit the band while keyboardist Doctor Fink remained. Prince then recruited new band members Miko Weaver on guitar, Atlanta Bliss on trumpet, Eric Leeds on saxophone, Boni Boyer on keyboards, Levi Seacer, Jr. on bass and dancer Cat Glover.