By Scott Stenholm - Editorial Producer, Larry King Now
Born Prince Rogers Nelson on June 7, 1958, in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Prince would later change his name four times. His early albums included Prince (1979), Dirty Mind (1980) and Controversy (1981). The latter being aptly titled as his music often stirred controversy due to the frequent pairing of religious and sexual themes. Prince rose to superstardom with the release of the albums 1999 and Purple Rain.
"It is with profound sadness that I am confirming that the legendary, iconic performer, Prince Rogers Nelson, has died at his Paisley Park residence this morning at the age of 57," said his publicist, Yvette Noel-Schure.
Immediately following the news that iconic singer and songwriter had died, reaction began pouring in from members of the music industry as well as other public figures.
Our very own Larry King, who famously interviewed Prince during the full hour of Larry King Live in 1999, called into the Larry King Now offices Thursday and gave his reaction to the singer's death and reflected on the 1999 interview :
LARRY KING NOW PRODUCER: What would you say his place in music history would be?
LARRY KING: I’d put him right there with Michael Jackson and Stevie Wonder and all the greats that he mentioned [during our interview]. He had that effect on [those artists as well]. I think that he was, out of five stars, he was all of the stars. He had tremendous following all around the world. I’m sure there is an international mourning today.
PRODUCER: You’ve interviewed so many musicians. How often would musicians cite Prince as an inspiration to them or an influence for their music?
KING: I think most of the people followed him. I would say that he was an inspiration... In the music culture, if you’re under forty, Prince had a great effect on you.
Justin Timberlake posted a tribute to Prince on Instagram writing, "It was 'Raspberry Beret.' I was 4 years old. Yes, 4. I remember that I instantly loved it,'" Timberlake recalls of his first encounter with Prince's extensive, celebrated catalogue. "'Mommy, who is that singing?' Seems weird but it's true."
Timberlake also shared his view of what kind of legacy the 'Purple Rain' singer will leave. "More than a 'once in a lifetime' artist... Just a ONCE IN FOREVER ARTIST. I'm still in shock as I write this and I feel this overwhelming grief," he wrote. "But, we should all turn away from that and HONOR this musician that changed all of our lives, our perspectives, our feeling, our whole being. From another planet? Probably. Royalty, for sure. Us worthy? Laughable."
Even President Obama reacted to the news by releasing statement that was posted to Facebook, "Today, the world lost a creative icon. Michelle and I join millions of fans from around the world in mourning the sudden death of Prince. Few artists have influenced the sound and trajectory of popular music more distinctly, or touched quite so many people with their talent. As one of the most gifted and prolific musicians of our time, Prince did it all. Funk. R&B. Rock and roll. He was a virtuoso instrumentalist, a brilliant bandleader, and an electrifying performer.
"'A strong spirit transcends rules,' Prince once said," Obama added. "And nobody's spirit was stronger, bolder or more creative. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family, his band and all who loved him."
During their appearances on Larry King Now, famed music producer, LA Reid, named Prince as the most influential musician in his life and iconic musician, Linda Perry, spoke about touring with the 'Purple Rain' singer:
Several famous figures shared their shock and sadness to Prince's death on Twitter:
— Chaka Khan (@ChakaKhan) April 21, 2016
Prince was a gift and a genius. He showed us that we have no limits. His music left me forever changed. ❤ https://t.co/AbZc3AGxny
— Alicia Keys (@aliciakeys) April 21, 2016
Wow!!! I can't even believe this!!! 💔💔 I will never forget this day that you came on the iheart… https://t.co/dLp1HmNVjW
— Mary J. Blige (@maryjblige) April 21, 2016
Genius, legend, inspiration, friend.
The world will miss you.
I'll never get over it. pic.twitter.com/RXIZdfGNPw
— Mariah Carey (@MariahCarey) April 21, 2016
RIP Prince. There will never be anyone else like you.
— Ellie Goulding (@elliegoulding) April 21, 2016
RIP Prince ☔️
— G-Eazy (@G_Eazy) April 21, 2016
— Kevin Hart (@KevinHart4real) April 21, 2016
Prince wrote some of my most favorite songs. May he rest in peace wearing an amazing jumpsuit with plenty of doves to keep him company.
— Tegan and Sara (@teganandsara) April 21, 2016
💜 prince forever 💜
— CHARLI XCX (@charli_xcx) April 21, 2016
— Sheryl Crow (@SherylCrow) April 21, 2016
💔about Prince, one of the greatest artists has left us today. I'll miss my friend, his advice&great humor.Thank you for your magical music.
— Cyndi Lauper (@cyndilauper) April 21, 2016
And just like that...the world lost a lot of magic ✨ Rest in peace Prince! Thanks for giving us so much...
— KATY PERRY (@katyperry) April 21, 2016
The views and opinions expressed herein are those of the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of Ora Media, LLC, its affiliates, or its employees.