The Life of Prince in a 24-Page Comic Book: A New Release

prince comic cover

Since Prince’s death in April, writ­ers have been try­ing to sum up a life lived that was both very pri­vate and yet also felt like it exist­ed in our DNA. Much like Bowie, the Prince we knew was the one we shared and we saw and we sang. So how to get that life into a 24 page com­ic book?

Released June 7th on Prince’s birth­day, Trib­ute: Prince is a primer on the musician’s life and pass­ing writ­ten by Michael L. Frizell and illus­trat­ed by Span­ish artist Ernesto Lovera. The com­ic actu­al­ly dates from 2013, when it was released as Fame: Prince, but Ital­ian illus­tra­tor Vin­cen­zo San­sone has con­clud­ed the sto­ry of his life with three extra pages now added to the tale, which alludes to Prince’s opi­oid use, his demand­ing sched­ule, and the pub­lic reac­tion to his pass­ing.

purple rain comic

Frizell starts the tale from a fan’s per­spec­tive, as a teen girl in 1984, secret­ly enjoy­ing his music, hid­ing the fact from her par­ents. The sto­ry then jumps back to Prince’s child­hood, his strug­gle to get a record­ing con­tract, and his explo­sive fame. Read­ers will spot numer­ous allu­sions to Prince’s lyrics in the text, as well. Frizell has also writ­ten issues of Trib­ute about David Bowie and Mot­ley Crüe, and said in a pro­mo state­ment, “The sub­jects of [Prince’s] songs spoke to me in ways I did­n’t under­stand until I was old­er, but the dark poet­ry of them com­pelled me to keep lis­ten­ing. To this day, my iPod is full of his work and I lis­ten to it as I write.”

prince comic 2

The sin­gle issue com­ic is avail­able online and in stores and comes with three dif­fer­ent cov­ers by David Frizell, Vin­cen­zo San­sone, and Pablo Mar­ti­ne­na. It runs $3 or $4. If you have Kin­dle Unlim­it­ed plan, you can get it for free.

Relat­ed con­tent:

See Prince (RIP) Play Mind-Blow­ing Gui­tar Solos On “While My Gui­tar Gen­tly Weeps” and “Amer­i­can Woman”

Hear Aman­da Palmer’s Cov­er of “Pur­ple Rain,” a Gor­geous Stringfelt Send-Off to Prince

Prince (RIP) Per­forms Ear­ly Hits in a 1982 Con­cert: “Con­tro­ver­sy,” “I Wan­na Be Your Lover” & More

Ted Mills is a free­lance writer on the arts who cur­rent­ly hosts the artist inter­view-based FunkZone Pod­cast. You can also fol­low him on Twit­ter at @tedmills, read his oth­er arts writ­ing at and/or watch his films here.

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  • james moser says:

    Sov­er­eign, the cre­ative, Gram­my-win­ning per­former who passed on of a coin­ci­den­tal, self-per­pet­u­at­ed excess of an amaz­ing painkiller in April, is being regard­ed with a com­ic book about his life.

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