Pre Fame celebrates the 40th anniversary since photographer Robert Whitman snapped Prince in 1970’s Minneapolis, before Prince hit the biiiig time.
Back in ’77 local musician, Prince Rogers Nelson, came to the attention of Minneapolis music agent/manager Owen Husney and his partner Gary Levinson. The managers convinced Whitman to shoot what would become Prince’s official Warner Bros press kit photographs, by playing him a demo of ‘Soft and Wet‘ on his car stereo. The rest is history.
Whitman told BEAT via email that, “We were just two simple guys from Minneapolis and he became one of the most influential people in the world.”
The book compiles pretty much all of Whitman’s archives from that particular photography session – it’s 200 pages deep, features 71 works (4 in colour), 18 contact sheets, a whopping total of 648 images, the original 1977 press brochure and diary entries from Prince’s then business manager Gary Levinson. Plus there’s a tribute essay from Spike Lee.
Prince’s style in these images is so fine it hurts – though he looks a little more Jimi Hendrix than the trademark flamboyant sex kitten he eventually evolved into. Check out a preview of Pre Frame below:
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