Prince Rogers Nelson was an American singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, record producer, and actor. He was a musical innovator and known for his eclectic work, flamboyant stage presence, extravagant dress and makeup, and wide vocal range. His music integrates a wide variety of styles, including funk, rock, R&B, soul, psychedelia, and pop. He has sold over 100 million records worldwide, making him one of the best-selling artists of all time.
“Sign o’ the Times”, also stylized as “Sign ‘☮’ the Times”, is the lead single from 1987 album of the same name. The song was originally intended for two separate albums meant to be released in 1986, that were both shelved.
Sign o’ the Times is the ninth studio album by American recording artist Prince. It was released on March 31, 1987, by Paisley Park Records and Warner Bros. Records. The album is the follow-up to Parade (1986), and Prince’s first “solo” album following his departure from The Revolution. The songs were largely recorded during 1986 to 1987 in sessions for albums Prince ultimately aborted: Dream Factory, Camille, and Crystal Ball. Initially intending to release a triple album culled from these sessions, Prince compromised with label executives and shortened the length of the release to two discs.
The album’s music encompasses a varied range of styles, including funk, soul, psychedelic pop, electro, and rock music. Its release was supported by several singles, among them the androgynous “If I Was Your Girlfriend” and the socially conscious title track, and was also accompanied by a well-received concert film of the same name. It received widespread critical acclaim upon its release, with many critics since referring to it as Prince’s best work.