The rather infamous vault of Prince’s unreleased music is being shopped around record labels for $35m, according to reports from the US.
While some of the songs have been widely bootlegged, they have never seen an official release. The collection includes Rebirth of the Flesh, Electric Intercourse and Extraloveable as well as hundreds of hours of live recordings and concert footage.
According to Billboard, all three major record labels are allegedly in talks over releasing the material. They also mentioned an unnamed source, who claimed that the announced but unreleased deluxe edition of Purple Rain will be coming out in 2017.
We can also expect a greatest hits compilation before the end of this year.
The vault in question is something of infamy, as it’s tucked away underneath Prince’s Paisley Park home, complete with a steel door with spinning handle and combination lock. When Prince passed earlier this year, he was the only one with the code, so the safe had to be drilled into by the company managing his estate.
According to Brent Fischer, who composed string arrangements for Prince alongside his father Clare, the archives in the vault are vast.
He said: “I think over 70% of the music we’ve worked on for Prince is yet to be released. There are lot of songs that were sent to us clearly with the idea that they would never be released. They were almost comical songs that he would work out with his horn players. There was lot of wild horn parts and experimentation with samples.”
The problem is, the ownership of the music is very much up in the air. A lot of it was recorded when Prince was under contract with Warner Bros, but he subsequently signed deals with every other major label, including Jay-Z’s Tidal service.