Prince in 1977: Photos of his Purpleness Before the Fame
The year was 1977. At the time, a 19-year-old kid named Prince Rogers Nelson was a complete unknown. No record contract. No hit singles.
He’d recorded an early demo of the song “Soft and Wet”. It was enough to get photographer Robert Whitman interested to take some promo shots of the struggling musician.
“I heard his music on a cassette for the first time,” Whitman recalled, “and the day after I went to a Minneapolis recording studio, invited by my friends and his managers, to meet him.”
The two hit it off and proceeded to spend the next few days together, walking to locations all around the city. The result was the first professional photo shoot of the soon-to-be star.