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How Prince Navigated The Music Industry His Way

by Black America Web

When you take a look back at the musicians who have had the greatest impact on music, Prince is near the top of the list. In a career spanning four decades (and nearly just as many albums during his lifetime), the multi-hyphenate artist transcended genres and generations.

One thing that should also be noted is how he was able to transcend.

Prince Rogers Nelson was an artist who took pride in his work. As such, he wanted to control how his work was presented and rewarded. As an early advocate of artists’ rights, he pushed back against the major labels, was an early champion (and later, critic) of the internet, and fought against illegal streaming and for equal pay for artists…even if it meant doing it solo.

The impact of the legend’s business moves is still being felt today, eight years after his untimely death at the age of 57. From Radiohead and Nine Inch Nails to Chance The Rapper and Megan Thee Stallion, many artists have learned a thing or two from the purple one when it comes to business.

Let’s take a look at some of the ways that Prince navigated the music industry in his own way.


1. One Man Band

A musical prodigy, Prince hit the ground running with his debut album, 1978’s For You. He did pretty much all of the heavy lifting: arranging, producing, writing, singing, and playing every single instrument on the album. Wanting to keep his process close to the chest, he even left his label, Warner Bros., in the dark. As reported by Billboard, when WB executives Lenny Waronker and Russ Thyret paid him a surprise visit, they quickly learned the hard way not to mess with his process. Waronker commented on how good the track “So Blue” would sound after the bass was added.  Prince responded by kicking the label execs out of the studio. Let’s just say it wouldn’t be his last time beefing with the label.

2. Breaking The Chains

Prince In Concert At Wembley Arena


Over the years, Prince would grow…

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