On this day in music history: June 25, 1984 - “Purple Rain”, the sixth album by Prince is released. Produced by Prince, it is recorded at First Avenue (w/ mobile recording truck) in Minneapolis, MN, The Warehouse in St. Louis Park, MN, The Record Plant in New York, NY, and Sunset Sound in Hollywood, CA from August 1983 - March 1984. Serving as the soundtrack to Prince’s motion picture debut, it is the first album officially credited to Prince & The Revolution. Recording of the music for the film begins on August 3, 1983 when the band perform a live benefit show at First Avenue in Minneapolis. The performance marks the debut of new guitarist Wendy Melvoin, with the master versions of “I Would Die 4 U” (#8 Pop, #11 R&B), “Baby I’m A Star” and the title track being recorded at this show. These performances appear on the finished album with only minimal post production. The film and albums rousing opener “Let’s Go Crazy” (#1 Pop and R&B) is recorded at Prince’s rehearsal space “The Warehouse”, after he asks recording engineer Susan Rogers to pull the equipment out of his home studio. The basic track is cut live in spite of having no isolation between the musicians, and electrical interference from various appliances in the building. The track “Take Me With U” (#25 Pop, #40 R&B), the artists duet with Apollonia Kotero is originally slated to appear on Apollonia 6’s album, but Prince changes his mind and includes it on “Purple Rain”. Original LP copies are packaged with a poster of the band (taken during the video shoot for “When Doves Cry”), with a limited number of US promo copies (some stock copies in foreign territories) pressed on purple vinyl. Released four weeks ahead of the film, the soundtrack is an instant critical and commercial smash, launching Prince into worldwide super stardom. It spins off five singles including “When Doves Cry” (#1 Pop and R&B), and the title track (#2 Pop and #4 R&B), becoming the sixth best selling soundtrack of all time. It also wins two Grammy Awards in 1985. “Purple Rain” is inducted into the Grammy Hall Of Fame in 2011, and in 2012 is added to the National Recording Registry by The Library Of Congress. On June 23, 2017, remastered editions of the album are reissued on CD, including a Deluxe Edition 3 CD + DVD set. The deluxe version includes the original album on disc one, with disc two featuring eleven bonus tracks of previously unreleased material. Disc three contains the 7" edits and 12" extended versions. The DVD features the “Prince & The Revolution Live!” concert video originally released in 1985. It is also issued with the new remaster on standard black vinyl, and as a picture disc. “Purple Rain” spends twenty four consecutive weeks at number one on the Billboard Top 200, nineteen consecutive weeks at number one on the R&B album chart, and is certified 13x Platinum in the US by the RIAA, earning a Diamond Certification.
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