Prince’s Purple Rain won an American Music Award on Sunday night for Best Soundtrack and the late star’s sister Tyka Nelson accepted the trophy on his behalf, making a heartfelt speech about her brother.
“Prince defied the odds,” she said, reading off a purple sheet of paper. “A black teen in Minneapolis with a goal to electrify the world, he had the courage to be different. With his vision and God given talent, he is still one of the world’s most respected and loved artists. What he told me was that he wanted to be known as the world’s most prolific songwriter. With 984 titles to his credit and counting he has done just that. In the words of Prince, ‘With love, honor, and respect for every living thing in the universe separation ceases and we all become one being singing one song.’ On behalf of Prince, our wonderful friend, teacher, and brother, I humbly accept this award.”
She then named all of her other siblings and addressed her late brother, “We’ll keep this for you at Paisley Park until we see you again. This is for you.”
Purple Rain originally won at the American Music Awards back in 1985 in the Favorite Pop/ Rock Album and Favorite Soul/ R&B album categories, and Prince performed “Purple Rain” during that broadcast as well, daring to show nonbelievers why the album beat out Michael Jackson’s Thriller and Lionel Richie’s Can’t Slow Down. Relive that performance below.