Prince Rogers Nelson

Essay by KOOKiiEzJunior High, 7th grade February 2008

download word file, 15 pages 3.0

Prince Rogers Nelson was born to John L. Nelson & Mattie Shaw on June 7, 1958 at Mount Sinai Hospital in Minneapolis, Minnesota. His birth name came from a jazz trio that his father played in, The Prince Rogers Trio. There are a lot of rumors regarding Prince's ethnicity and gender, some spread by Prince himself. The most persuasive is that his mother is white and his father is black, a rumor later bolstered by the film Purple Rain, staring Prince. His mother, Mattie Shaw, is indeed African American, Native American and White lineage. While his father, John Nelson, is indeed Black and Italian ancestry.

After the birth of his younger sister, Tika Evene, in 1960, his parents slowly drifted apart and formally separated. Price's mother soon re-married and he had a troubled relationship with his stepfather causing him to run away. He briefly lived with his father, who brought him his 1st guitar.

Later, he moved with the neighborhood family, the Andersons, and became friends with their son, Andre.

Prince and Andre joined Price's cousin, Charles Smith, in a band call Grand Central which was formed in high school. Prince started off as just a part of a mainly instrumental band that played at clubs and parties in the Minneapolis area. As time passed and his musical knowledge broadened he found himself dictating the arrangements of the rest of the band. Before long he had become the bands' front man. By the time he entered high school; Grand Central evolved into Champagne and started playing original music from a range of influences including Sly Stone, James Brown, Jimmy Page, and Jimi Hendrix.

In 1976, Prince started working on a demo tape with producer Chris Moon in a Minneapolis studio. He also had the patronage of Owen Husney, allowing...