R&B and soul icon Prince – born Prince Rogers Nelson on June 7, 1958, in Minneapolis, Minnesota - was raised in a musical household: his father was a pianist and songwriter, and his mother was a jazz singer. Prince was playing guitar, piano and drums in different bands from his early teens, impressing audiences with his versatility and virtuosity. He was 17 years old when major record label Warner Bros. signed him, releasing his first album For You in 1978. Despite controversy surrounding his sexually explicit lyrics and provocative stage shows, he achieved a major breakthrough in 1982 with the double album 1999, which went on to sell three million copies and included the hit “Little Red Corvette”. With a dramatic sense of theater and extrovert dress sense, Prince was one of the first black acts featured on MTV and had even greater success with his music for the semi-biographical film Purple Rain. Subsequent hits included “When Doves Cry”, “Kiss” and “Sign O' the Times”. Prince became the most influential artist of his day and wrote and/or produced hits for other artists including the Bangles, Sheena Easton, The Time, Sinead O’Connor, and many others. He also set up his own recording studio and Warner-distributed label, both called Paisley Park. However, in the 1990s, he became involved in a very public contract dispute with Warner Bros. and refused to record for the label. He changed his stage name to The Artist Formerly Known as Prince and began releasing his music on his new label NPG (New Power Generation). After his battle with Warners, his career never reached the same commercial heights as his ‘80s releases. However, he remained very prolific in the studio, constantly recording material and then storing the recordings in his vault. Once he reverted back to the name Prince, he released a series of albums in physical format as well as several digital-only releases. In September 2015, he released the album Hit n Run Phase One, which was followed three months later by the digital release of Hit n Run Phase Two. In January 2016, he sold physical copies of the album during live shows but wasn’t commercially available until two weeks after his untimely death. Prince was found dead in his home in Minnesota, the cause of death given as an accidental overdose. Shortly after his death, he was posthumously inducted into the Rhythm & Blues Music Hall of Fame, with a greatest hits album titled 4Ever released later in 2016. The following year saw a re-release of Purple Rain along with a series of previously unreleased tracks from Prince's archive. In 2018 compilation album Anthology: 1995-2010 arrived followed by Piano and a Microphone 1983. The compilation Originals was released in 2019 and included the original Prince demo versions of songs he had written for other artists. In July 2021, his label NPG released the album Welcome 2 America, which had been recorded in 2010 but never released. It was the first full unreleased studio album issued since his death in 2016.