Prince's "Lovesexy," "Dirty Mind," "Sign O' The Times" and 35 others slated for re-release.
The estate of the one and only Prince, may he rest in peace, and Sony Music Entertainment have signed a multi-phase exclusive distribution deal. What this means is that Sony's Legacy Recordings will have exclusive rights to sell 35 of Prince's albums released between 1978 and 2015, but not all at once. This year, Legacy will be releasing 19 albums from between the years 1995 to 2015 as well as some extras like B-Sides, singles and music videos.
What's notable about the deal is that Sony and Legacy are unable to release Prince's more well-known music from the period before 1995 until the year 2021. Legacy has the rights to twelve albums between 1978-95 including classics like Prince, Lovesexy, Dirty Mind and Sign O' The Times. The most notable omission from the list is the iconic Purple Rain, which is a soundtrack to the movie of the same name and thus not covered in the deal. Prince's albums will share a label with other all-times great like Elvis Presley, Willie Nelson, Paul Simon and Van Morrison, to name a few.
The announcement comes just over two years after Prince's death, only recently determined to be of a fentanyl overdose. He is one of many musicians to die of fentanyl-related causes in recent years (others include Lil Peep and Tom Petty). Although the promise of more Prince releases in the future is certainly no remedy to the grief caused by his death, it is heartening to know that even though Prince himself is gone, his music will continue to be released and we can continue to listen to it.