Stevie Wonder Leads Prince's Star-Studded Tribute

Prince's tribute show brought together old friends and young admirers of the artist in a four-hour concert.

Prince Has Died

Soul legend Stevie Wonder and Chaka Khan topped the bill for the all-star memorial on Thursday, just six months after the influential star died of a prescription drug overdose.

The show, in Prince's native Minnesota, opened unexpectedly with a video message from US President Barack Obama.

"Thank you, Prince, for all the great works you have done. You will be in our hearts forever."

The show continued under the purple spotlight as Stevie Wonder - whom Prince regarded as a role model - closed his act with the classic Purple Rain while confetti of the same colour fell on the audience.

"I will miss him forever," said Wonder. "We talked about so much, he had so many plans just to make the world a better place to live in."

Prince's ex-wife, the choreographer Mayte Garcia, also joined the show, performing a belly dance act and balancing a sword on her head.

The show brought together old friends, but also new talent.

Former Pussycat Dolls singer Nicole Scherzinger brought her own version of Nasty Girl, a hit single written by Prince and performed by 1980s band Vanity 6.

But there were also a few last-minute drop outs.

Pop star Christina Aguilera - citing a "vocal illness" - was replaced by British singer Jessie J who performed Nothing Compared 2 U, another song written and composed by Prince for his Family album.

Singers John Mayer and Anita Barker were the other two no-shows.

Prince was famously reclusive, but video testimonials at the service revealed he had given large sums of money to charities anonymously - including $1m to the Harlem Children's Zone in New York.

The artist's sister, Tyka Nelson, asked for the concert to be a memorial that would serve as closure on his death.

The singer died last April without leaving a will, and there is an ongoing legal battle among potential heirs to divide his estate.

(c) Sky News 2016:

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