Prince’s Sign O’ The Times, 30 years on – what’s in our Top 3 Prince vinyl rarities?

From BBC

The artwork for Sign O’ The Times introduced Prince’s new peach and black colour scheme

Thirty years ago, Prince was at a turning point in his career.

The film Purple Rain and its soundtrack had made him a star in 1984. But the following two years saw, by commercial expectations, three flops: The albums Around The World In A Day and Parade, as well as the ill-conceived, self-directed movie bomb Under The Cherry Moon.

He decided to cut loose. He split from his band, The Revolution, and planned a triple album – Crystal Ball. But his label, Warner Bros, put their foot down and the project became the double disc Sign O’ The Times, released on 31 March, 1987.

It would become one of the most acclaimed albums of the second half of the 20th century, and remains Prince’s masterpiece – encompassing all of his musical personas: bedroom balladeer; penitent Christian; one-track-mind loverman; modern-day Basie-style bandleader; whimsical storyteller; meticulous orchestrator, guitar-wielding axeman and pop craftsman.

Prince, then 29 years old, created it in a period of feverish activity, making copious use of a new Linn drum machine, and a state-of-the-art Prophet-5 synthesiser, borrowed from his keyboard player Matt “Dr” Fink.

“Just to be clear, he really did a lot of stuff on that album on his own,” recalls Fink.

“[Two] years later, he did Batman with no help in the studio, as far as I know.”

The star released a concert film of the album in 1988, which remains the best document of his powerful live shows

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Here’s our current Top 3 Prince vinyl rarities currently in stock, to see more Prince at 991.com click here

PRINCE Bambi (Very Scarce 1979 Belgian wide centred 7″ single for the Benelux market, also featuring Still Waiting, housed in a unique monochrome portrait sleeve with gold lettering. The thin cover shows just the lightest spot of creasing fromring wear & the vinyl is Excellent with minimal sign of play. We haven’t stocked one of these since 1999 (no pun intended!) More info here
PRINCE Sexy MF (Limited Edition 1992 US promotional-only Translucent Yellow Vinyl 12″, featuring the same 5:25 version both sides. The vinyl is near ‘as new’ & comes housed in the original jet black die-cut sleeve with “Jacket made in Canada” print on the back, still in open shrink (this copy originally came sealed). Sexy af! More info here
PRINCE Little Red Corvette (Limited Edition 1983 UK cream WB label 12″ single, featuring the Full Length Version backed with Horny Toad & D.M.S.R., housed in a flipback picture sleeve complete with the rare spiral bound Prince calendar only available with a limited number of the first batch press. The calendar remains in great shape with just some mild edge wear from storage. More info here

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