Prince Estate Announces Remastered Edition of Iconic Album ‘Diamonds and Pearls’

By Stu Kelly / August 24, 2023

Today, the Prince estate has unveiled plans for a remastered reissue of the iconic album Diamonds and Pearls, recorded in collaboration with the newly formed backing band the New Power Generation. The album, known for its chart-topping hits and groundbreaking sound, continues to captivate audiences even decades after its original release in 1991. The album’s fusion of musical styles and innovative sound once again captivated listeners when released, showcasing Prince’s artistic versatility as an ever-evolving artist.

Earlier this week, the official Prince social media channels posted intriguing teasers that strongly suggest a reissue of the beloved album. The post, accompanied by an alternate version of the original album cover photo, tantalizingly specified a date for the forthcoming announcement: August 24. This news has sparked a wave of anticipation and excitement among Prince’s devoted fanbase.

The original Diamonds and Pearls album was a significant milestone in Prince’s illustrious career. Boasting unforgettable tracks such as “Cream,” which marked Prince’s fifth and final US number-one hit, the title track “Diamonds and Pearls,” and the groove-filled “Gett Off,” the album left an indelible mark on the music scene. The latter two singles achieved top-five positions in both the US and UK charts, further cementing Prince’s status as a musical powerhouse. Diamonds And Pearls was a huge commercial success; it was certified Platinum in the USA, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, and France.

A distinctive aspect of the album was its introduction of an essentially new band lineup, with Levi Seacer, Jr. being the sole remaining member from the previous formation. Renowned musicians such as Michael B. on drums, Sonny T. on bass guitar, and Tommy Barbarella on keyboards contributed significantly to the album’s musical tapestry. Additionally, the album featured the talents of Levi Seacer, Jr. on rhythm guitar, Rosie Gaines on keyboards and vocals, and a trio of rappers, Tony M., Damon Dickson, and Kirk Johnson, who added unique dimensions to the album’s tracks.

Kirk Johnson’s presence would continue to be felt in Prince’s musical journey for several years, as he held various roles, including becoming Prince’s full-time drummer from 1996 to 2000. Notably, he even served as Prince’s best man during his wedding to Mayte in 1996.

Fans can’t help but recall the lavish treatment given to the 2020 reissue of Sign ‘O’ The Times, which came in expansive 8-CD and 13-LP vinyl super deluxe editions, both complemented by accompanying DVDs. This has led many to speculate about the potential comprehensive offerings that might accompany the remastered Diamonds and Pearls release. The Diamonds and Pearls reissue will get the same treatment as it features 47 unreleased tracks and over 2 hours of live concert footage. The reissue (in its various formats, available to pre-order now) will be officially released on October 27.

Two unreleased recordings are available to hear now: “Alice Through the Looking Glass,” a Prince vault track originally recorded May 28, 1991, at Larrabee Sound Studios, Studio A, in Los Angeles. And an early mix of the Diamonds and Pearls cut “Insatiable,” which features both lyrics and additional instruments cut from the song’s final version.


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Stu Kelly