On June 25, 1984, Prince released his sixth studio album, Purple Rain, the soundtrack to his hit movie of the same name. 

The film, which grossed $70 million in the U.S., starred Prince as The Kid, a talented but troubled musician in the Minneapolis area who escapes his abusive home life through his music. It also followed his budding romance with an aspiring singer, played by Apollonia.

The Purple Rain soundtrack was Prince’s first #1 and spent 24 weeks on the top of the chart. Singles “When Doves Cry” and “Let’s Go Crazy” both hit #1 on the Billboard Hot 100, while the title track peaked at #2 and another single, “I Would Die 4 U,” went to #8. 

Prince’s longtime friend and collaborator Sheila E tells ABC Audio “Purple Rain” was an “amazing” song featuring a guitar solo Prince recorded live.

“He was one of my favorite guitar players of all time,” she says, noting that “celebrating who he was and his legacy, which is his music, is very special.”

And for Sheila, there’s one simple reason why Purple Rain is still loved by fans 40 years later.

It’s his music. I mean, it’s forever music,” she says. “He wrote music that will be here for decades and decades, you know, and that’s good songwriting.” 

Purple Rain has been certified 13-times Platinum and earned Prince and The Revolution two Grammy Awards. Prince also won the Academy Award for Best Original Song Score. 

And Prince’s Purple Rain legacy continues. A new musical based on the movie is in the works, with fans who attended the Prince Celebration at Paisley Park getting the first preview.  

It’s set for a 2025 pre-Broadway engagement at the State Theatre in Minneapolis from April 10 to May 11.

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