Prince to release new albums as bust-up saga with label ends

Posted at 08/28/14 12:43 AM

PARIS - US pop star Prince will release two new albums at the end of September, his record label said on Tuesday, marking the end of one of the longest-running employment disputes in musical history.

Prince, 56, fell out with Warner Bros Records in the early 1990s, prompting him to change his name to an unpronounceable symbol and appear in public with the word "slave" daubed across his face.

The name change bewildered fans and led the press to dub him "The Artist Formerly Known as Prince".

But following a reconciliation with Warner Bros Records announced earlier this year, two albums -- "Art Official Age" and "Plectrumelectrum -- will be released on September 30, the label said on its website.

"Art Official Age" is a 13-track solo album, described by the label as "a contemporary concoction of soul, R&B and funk".

The second is by Prince's new band 3RDEYEGIRL consisting of guitarist Donna Grantis, drummer Hannah Ford Welton and bassist Ida Nielsen. Many of its "funk-rock" tracks were performed live on the group's recent mini-tour.

Warner Bros acknowledged the acrimonious dispute with the star -- who it first signed in 1977 -- in the announcement.

The renewed partnership came about after it "returned to Prince the master recordings of his pioneering 1980s albums, including "Dirty Mind", "Purple Rain" and "Sign o' the Times", it said.

The singer had demanded that he should retain the original master tapes of his albums.

Prior to the reconciliation with Warner Bros Records, Prince had used his own NPG Records label to release his more recent records.

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