Prince Dead At 57

April 21, 2016

The world was shocked on Thursday, April 21 when news broke that the Artist, Symbol, and musical genius known as Prince had died. According to reports, the music icon was found unresponsive in an elevator at his Paisley Park estate and later pronounced dead. He was 57.

Prince, born Prince Rogers Nelson, was reported to have been battling the flu in the weeks leading up to his passing. He canceled two performances in early April due to health concerns but performed several shows after and seemed to be on the mend. He performed at Atlanta’s Fox Theatre on April 14 to excited fans. However, on April 15 during his flight home he experienced a medical emergency that forced his private jet to make an emergency landing in Illinois.

A strong spirit transcends rules. ~Prince

When the shocking announcement was made, many could not and did not want to believe that yet another talented music superstar was gone. I believe that many had such a strong connection to Prince, not just because of his music but because he was real. He owned everything that made him who he was – his drive, his softness, his ego,  his talent. This realness allowed him to transcend genres and make music that mixed funk, rock, pop, and soul.

As fans around the world began to accept the news, they took to social media to express their loss, their appreciation of Prince’s creative brilliance, and to pay tribute to the man, the legend that had touched their lives for many decades.

Barak Obama, President of the United States, posted a message on Facebook about the loss we are all feeling.

Former drummer of Prince’s New Power Generation, Sheila E. expressed her shock on Twitter about her former flame’s death.

Justin Timberlake penned a touching tribute to Prince and posted it on Instagram. 

"Yeah, everybody's got a bomb, we could all die any day. But before I'll let that happen, I'll dance my life away."

Like Justin Timberlake and many others, Prince’s music was part of the soundtrack of my childhood. My love of Prince and his music continued into my college years, where every week I would go to the Cherry Street Pub and dance my life away to his music. During his over 30-year career, the seven-time GRAMMY Award winner recorded over thirty albums, sold millions, and even won an Oscar for Original Song Score for Purple Rain at the 1985 Acdemy Awards.  There was something magical about Prince; his creativity and his vision knew no bounds. His melodies, lyrics, and guitar riffs transport you to another space a plane of infinite possibility and love. I am so thankful that I got the chance to see him perform live in 2014 at the 20th Anniversary Essence Festival. I will always remember that night, how young and old, black and white gathered to celebrate music and wore purple in honor of The Artist.

"Everyone has their own experience. That's why we are here, to go through our experience, to learn, to go down those paths and eventually you may have gone down so many paths and learned so much that you don't have to come back again."

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