Record Label: Warner Brothers
Prince arrived on the scene in the late-70s, and it didn't take long for him to upend the music world with his startling music and arresting demeanor. He rewrote the rulebook, forging a synthesis of black funk and white rock that served as a blueprint for cutting-edge music in the '80s. He made dance music that rocked and rock music that had a bristling, funky backbone.
From the beginning, Prince and his music were androgynous, sly, sexy and provocative. His colorful image and revolutionary music made him a figure comparable in paradigm-shifting impact to Little Richard, James Brown, Jimi Hendrix and George Clinton.
Prince hit an artistic peak with Sign 'O' the Times (1987), his first album since 1999 not to be co-credited to the Revolution. A double album that was trimmed down from an intended triple, Sign 'O' the Times was Prince's most musically expansive and lyrically incisive album. On the sobering "Sign 'O' the Times" (No. 6), Prince enumerated a catalog of social ills (AIDS, crack, gang violence) over a skeletal funk track. Other hits from the album included "U Got the Look" (No. 2), a duet with Sheena Easton, and "I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man" (No. 10).