Prince Roger Nelson (born June 7, 1958), known by his mononym Prince, is an American singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and actor. A major figure in popular music for over three decades, Prince is renowned as an innovator and is widely-known for his eclectic work, flamboyant stage presence and wide vocal range. Widely regarded as the pioneer of Minneapolis sound, Prince’s music combines rock, R&B, soul, funk, hip hop, disco, psychedelia, jazz, and pop.
Born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Prince developed an interest in music at an early age, writing his first song at age seven. After recording songs with his cousin’s band 94 East, 19-year-old Prince recorded several unsuccessful demo tapes before releasing his debut album, For You, in 1978 under the guidance of Manager Owen Husney. His 1979 album, Prince, went platinum due to the success of the singles “Why You Wanna Treat Me So Bad?” and “I Wanna Be Your Lover“. His next three records, Dirty Mind (1980), Controversy (1981) and 1999 (1982), continued his success, showcasing Prince’s trademark of prominently sexual lyrics and incorporation of elements of funk, dance and rock music. In 1984, he began referring to his backup band as the Revolution and released Purple Rain, which served as the soundtrack to his film debut of the same name.