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Friday, June 10, 2016

A Rare Promo Copy of Prince's The Black Album Sold For $15,000 on Discogs, Becoming The Site's Highest Selling Record Ever

Posted By on Fri, Jun 10, 2016 at 1:55 PM

The promo-only release of The Black Album had no printed title, artist name, production credits or photography printed. - DISCOGS
  • Discogs
  • The promo-only release of The Black Album had no printed title, artist name, production credits or photography printed.
Last month, we reported that a rare copy of David Bowie's album, Bowie, sold for $6,826 on Discogs, becoming the online record shop's highest selling record ever. But we just got wind that another album recently sold for much — much — more, and lo and behold, it was a record from another recently deceased great: Prince.

And it's not just any album; it's an original promo copy of Prince's The Black Album from 1987, which, it turns out, was never supposed to see the light of day. 

Intended for release on December 7, 1987, The Black Album, which was more instrumental and funk themed than Prince's previous releases, was recalled by Prince a week before the date because he had a spiritual epiphany that the album was evil. Half a million copies that had been pressed and were waiting to be shipped were destroyed, and only about 50 promo copies, that had already been sent to clubs and DJs, prevailed. 

click to enlarge Photos of the prized $15,000 double album - DISCOGS
  • Discogs
  • Photos of the prized $15,000 double album
The Black Album ended up being re-released by Warner Bros. as a limited edition album in 1994, but the double 12" that recently sold on Discogs (and was shipped to a mysterious Prince fan in Japan) was one of the original saved promo copies.

And guess how much it sold for? $15,000!

Now that you know the backstory of the vinyl, it sort of makes sense that the record sold for as much as it did. A veritable record collector's (or Prince fan's) dream, The Black Album truly is a rarity, and we're willing to bet, worth every single penny to the person who bought it. 
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Jessie Schiewe


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