Prince's 10 craziest moments of all time
10. Prince does Batman
After a brief dry spell in the late '80s, Prince returns to the top of the charts with his fourth #1 hit "Batdance," written and recorded specifically for the 1989 Batman soundtrack. "Get the funk up!"
When Tipper Gore walked in on her 12-year-old daughter jamming out to Prince's "Darling Nikki," she was so appalled that she started a campaign to warn parents about the explicit nature of song lyrics. Good work, Tipper. Prince has since retired his raunchy ode to grinding, and refuses to play his sexually explicit songs since becoming a Jehovoh's Witness. Speaking of which...
8. Prince gets religious, somehow even stranger
Shortly after becoming a Jehovah's Witness in 2001, Prince told the UK's Daily Mirror that he has found peace and has starting going door-to-door to convert others to his newfound religion. "Sometimes I go in disguise," he said. "My hair is capable of doing a lot of different things. I don't always look like this."
7. Prince revolutionizes, and then shuts down, a new way to distribute music online
In June of 2006, Prince was awarded a Webby Lifetime Achievement Award for "visionary" use of the internet, specifically regarding his independent music distribution site NPG.com. On July 4, 2006, Prince shuts down NPG.com and writes a letter to his fans, writing "In a world without limitations and infinite possibilities, has the time come 2 once again make a leap of faith and begin anew."
6. Prince schools Charlie Murphy in basketball
Most everyone has seen the Charlie Murphy True Hollywood Stories sketch on the Chappelle Show that depicts the Purple One in a heated basketball match -- but the most surreal part about the sketch is that it actually happened. "We did play ball and he did win," Murphy later said in an interview.
5. Prince becomes a symbol, then "the Artist," then Prince again
In protest of his sour dealings with Warner Bros., Prince changes his name to an unpronounceable symbol (later trademarked as "Love Symbol #2) and is referred to as "The Artist Formerly Known as Prince," which was shortened to "The Artist." Shortly after signing a new deal with Arista in 1999, Prince becomes Prince again, though the symbol is still incorporated into much of his album artwork and is the model for some of his custom-made guitars.
4. Prince continues his (purple) reign of terror over the internet
Not satisfied with the amount of control he has over his image and music, Prince threatens to sue the operators of his own fansites and sics his legal team onto YouTube, attempting to scour the internet of his likeness. His lawyers reportedly asked the fansite hosts for "substantive details of the means by which you propose to compensate [Prince] for damages."
3. Prince paints his $11.9 million rental property purple
You know how most rental agreements have that clause that requires permission to pound holes in the wall or apply a fresh layer of paint? Prince must not have read his lease very closely, because in 2006 he painted the exterior of his rented 10 bedroom, 11 bath West Hollywood mansion purple, installed purple carpeting, and painted his symbol on the outside of the house. The landlords weren't super happy -- dude got sued. Oops.
2. Prince accidentally hates on gay marriage
In November of 2008, Prince was quoted in the New Yorker as saying "on the opposite end of the spectrum you've got blue, you've got the Democrats, and they're, like, 'You can do whatever you want.' Gay marriage, whatever. But neither of them is right... God came to earth and saw people sticking it wherever and doing it with whatever, and he just cleared it all out. He was, like, 'Enough." After a wave of controversy shook the internet, Prince claimed that he was misquoted, partly because he doesn't allow reporters to tape record his interviews.
1. Prince performs on MTV in assless yellow pants
Do we really need to expound on this one? ASSLESS YELLOW PANTS.