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Prince: A Legend Gone

Glenn Rohrbacker

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On April 21, the world lost one of the most influential musicians of all time. Prince Rogers Nelson, otherwise known as Prince, was a larger-than-life figure not just for music, but for fashion, pop culture, and equality. His death was a sudden occurrence, with reports coming in to 911 about someone dead in his estate, Paisley Park in Minnesota. Later information recognized that it was in fact the pop legend who had passed. The world was shocked with the news, as friends and colleagues of the music giant told their favorite stories and their favorite songs (if they could pick just one).

AP Photo

AP Photo

Celebrities all over the world expressed their grief over the lost musician. John Mayer was on Snapchat delivering a series of Prince-inspired guitar solos. Billy Idol tweeted, “Oh my god I can’t believe that Prince has died…he was a great great talent…RIP.” Musicians, actors, and really anyone who had the pleasure to work with Prince over the years expressed their surprise and heartbreak. Stars like Katy Perry, Samuel L. Jackson, Salma Hayek, Joel McHale, Ice-T, Blake Shelton, and even Neil deGrasse Tyson took to social media to express their grief and surprise. One of the most telling accounts was from NBC’s Tamron Hall, who was a close friend of Prince and had just talked to him last Monday. “We talked for hours Monday and I said he did not sound sick. He assured me he was okay. All Saturday he kept saying he was fine and asked me to come to Paisley. It was a sweet moment and I had no idea it would be our last time talking. I never imagined it,” she said.
Institutions all over the world paid tribute to the legend in their own way. Publications tinted their papers and magazines purple and featured Prince on the cover. The New Yorker cascaded a purple cover with rain drops cascading down the front, a common symbol of the iconic performer. Snapchat instituted a “purple rain” filter for the day, so people could share their memorials of the musician. One special memorial in particular was hosted in Brooklyn, New York, where fans gathered around movie director Spike Lee’s studio. He directed Prince’s 1992 video, “Money Don’t Matter 2 Night.” According to BuzzFeed News, “The tribute had all the makings of a standard summer block party: balmy weather, and people across generations dressed and coiffed to the nines spilling over brownstone steps onto the street. Most people wore purple, as Lee requested, and their spirits were high despite the tragedy that brought them out in the first place.”
There hasn’t been any confirmation on the cause of death, but an autopsy was performed on Friday, which could take weeks to get results back from. According to several sources, he had seemed fine over the weekend before and even held a concert at Paisley Park. He was admitted to the hospital a couple weeks ago for flu-like symptoms, but was released a few hours later. Prince revolutionized music and was able to connect with all generations from all genres in the music spectrum. He was an inspiration to any musician and we will surely miss his unique message and his God-like persona.

Glenn Rohrbacker, Editor-in-Chief

Glenn Rohrbacker is a junior at the University of New Haven studying communications with a concentration in journalism and minors in Political Science...

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Prince: A Legend Gone