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Prince: A Pop Life

Dave Hill


In 1978 Prince was presented to the world as a black teenage pop prodigy who wrote, produced and performed all his records himself, and had a nice line in lewd adolescent metaphors. By 1980 he had transformed into a God-fearing punk-funk deviant whose raw tributes to the pleasures of incest and oral sex made him the great untouchable of American radio. Come 1983, he was showing the square-eyed white kids who tuned into MTV how to handle an eye pencil and turn on to Armageddon; and within another eighteen months he had been hailed by Newsweek as ‘The new Prince of Hollywood’ for the smash-hit movie Purple Rain and its soundtrack L.P.

Today, Prince stands as the most talented, engaging, contradictory, flirtatious, prolific, weird and mysterious major rock star of recent times. His career has yielded a succession of bizarre experiments, miserable flops and brilliant exhibitions of flair and imagination. Prince: A Pop Life is the most thorough investigation yet into the forces which shape the unique vision of this 80s enigma, his unlikely beginnings in the American mid-West, the volatile workings of his business empire, and the deeper significance of his success.


Dave Hill
Three Rivers Press
13 April 1989

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