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How the music world is responding to Prince’s death

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The death of a legend

MJ Kim/Getty Images

This afternoon the musical world was rocked by the sudden death of the legendary artist Prince, who passed at age 57. Prince was one of the most influential artists of his generation, both musically and because of how he handled his business in the music industry.

Over the last 30 years very few artists have had a bigger effect on the music industry than Prince, and even fewer are as widely respected. Prince taught the modern generation of artists the importance of owning their art and controlling their careers. In 1993, he engaged in a war with Warner Bros. Records after the label refused to release his music when he wanted, and at one point he wrote "slave" across his face and changed his name to a symbol.

"If you don't own your masters, your master owns you."

"People think I'm a crazy fool for writing 'slave' on my face," Prince told Rolling Stone in a 1996 interview. "But if I can't do what I want to do, what am I? When you stop a man from dreaming, he becomes a slave. That's where I was. I don't own Prince's music. If you don't own your masters, your master owns you."

In 2014, Prince signed a new deal with Warner Bros. that gave him full control of his catalog. He finally got what he always wanted — full control over his art. Prince knew what he was worth and never settled for anything less than fair value, and that ideology has helped make the current generation of musicians more aware than ever.

Reactions to Prince's passing are pouring in from across the music world, including messages from some of Prince's musical peers, fans, and friends:

Lin-Manuel Miranda

Lily Allen

Duran Duran

Katy Perry

Billy Idol

LaToya Jackson

Gene Simmons

Boy George


Demi Lovato

Blake Shelton

Justin Timberlake

It was Raspberry Beret. I was 4 years old. Yes, 4. I remember that I instantly loved it. "Mommy, who is that singing?" Seems weird but it's true. More than a "once in a lifetime" artist... Just a ONCE IN FOREVER ARTIST. I'm still in shock as I write this and I feel this overwhelming grief. But, we should all turn away from that and HONOR this musician that changed all of our lives, our perspectives, our feeling, our whole being. From another planet? Probably. Royalty, for sure. Us worthy..? Laughable. They say don't meet your idols... That they let you down. But, some of my greatest, funniest (yes, he was hilarious), and most prolific encounters and conversations about music came from the moments that I spent with him. It would be silly to say that he has inspired our music... It's beyond that. He's somewhere within every song I've ever written. I am sad, but I will smile when I think of every second that I had the fortune of being in his company. We have lost our greatest living musician. But his music will never die. Prince, NOTHING COMPARES... #RIPPrince

A photo posted by Justin Timberlake (@justintimberlake) on

Russell Simmons


Spike Lee

I Miss My Brother. Prince Was A Funny Cat. Great Sense Of Humor.

A photo posted by Spike Lee (@officialspikelee) on


He Changed The World!! A True Visionary. What a loss. I'm Devastated. This is Not A Love Song.

A photo posted by Madonna (@madonna) on

Lenny Kravitz

The Weeknd

Chaka Khan

Ronnie Wood

Quincy Jones

President Obama

Frank Ocean