He's funky and rocking, prolific and quirky. The pop star Prince is seen in this photo released by Sony Music, March 23, 2004, to promote his album "Musicology." The album brought Prince his greatest success since the 1980s, when he reeled off a string of hits, including "When Doves Cry," "Little Red Corvette," "Kiss" and "Raspberry Beret."
Prince performs in his debut movie "Purple Rain," a 1984 rock opera about a young man's search for artistic accomplishment and love. The Minneapolis-based musician already had a sizeable hit with "1999," but the semi-autobiographical film and accompanying soundtrack made him a worldwide superstar.
Prince performs during the 27th annual Grammy Awards at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, Feb. 27, 1985. Prince received three trophies that evening. He won a fourth in 1986, for the single "Kiss."
Prince performs before a sold-out audience in Houston, Jan. 11, 1985. The singer quickly gained a reputation as a musical genius, dazzling audiences with his guitar, piano or feverishly dancing footsteps.
Prince performs during the MTV Video Music Awards in 1987, the year he released "Sign o' the Times."
Prince sings at Rupert's Nightclub in Golden Valley, Minn., May 1, 1990. The performance was a benefit for the family of former Prince bodyguard "Big Chick" Huntsberry, who died four weeks earlier.
The artist formerly known as Prince performs with Mayte and other dancers during the VH1 Fashion & Music Awards show in New York, Dec. 3, 1995. Prince, whose sexually charged material angered some and enticed others, was romantically linked to stars including Apollonia, Susanna Hoffs and Kim Basinger before tying the knot with Mayte in 1996.
Celebrating his 38th birthday, Prince and his wife Mayte watch Game 2 of the NBA Finals, June 7, 1996, in Chicago. The couple divorced in 1998.
An adventurous recording career also saw Prince, pictured outside NBC studios in New York in 1996, write "slave" on his face during a dispute with his label, Warner. He went on to release his own music, often using the Internet, from 1996 to 2004.
Prince poses backstage with Mayte at the 28th annual NAACP Image Awards ceremony, Feb. 8, 1997, in Pasadena, Calif.
Prince, right, introduces George Clinton and the Parliament Funkadelic for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, May 6, 1997, in Cleveland. His wife Mayte is at left.
Prince looks to photographers during a news conference in New York, July 22, 1997. In 1993, the eccentric singer changed his name to a symbol, partially pictured in the background, and was referred to as "The Artist Formerly Known as Prince." He switched back in 1999.
Former Sly and the Family Stone bassist Larry Grahm, left, shares the stage with Prince during a suprise appearance at a New York nightclub, April 10, 1998.
Prince talks with Britain's Prince Charles, right, at the "Diamonds are Forever" celebration at Syon House, London, June 9, 1999. The celebration was to include the unveiling of a multi-million dollar diamond jewelry collection, the first-ever Versace fashion show in Britain and a live performance by Jon Bon Jovi. Prince's wife Mayte is at center.
Prince leaves the stage after a news conference where he announced that he would again be known as Prince, and not the unpronounceable symbol that he'd been using in recent years, May 16, 2000, in New York.
Prince performs in Hong Kong, Oct. 17, 2003. The concert was the the opening act in a four-week government-sponsored music festival titled "Hong Kong Harbor Fest," aimed at boosting the image of SARS-battered Hong Kong.
Beyonce, left, and Prince perform during the 46th Annual Grammy Awards, Feb. 8, 2004, in Los Angeles.
Prince, center, arrives with Manuela Testolini, his wife and former employee, at the 12th Annual Elton John AIDS Foundation Fundraiser and post-Oscar party in West Hollywood, Calif., Feb. 29, 2004.
Prince performs during the 19th Annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony, March 15, 2004, in New York. The singer had just been inducted to the Hall of Fame, in the first year he was eligible -- 25 years after his 1978 recording debut "For You."