Prince’s business affairs have become quite convoluted following the star’s untimely death, and now the upcoming EP Deliverance has been pulled from both iTunes and Apple Music before it was even released, following a lawsuit by Prince’s estate.
Pieced together by former engineer and collaborator George Ian Boxill, its title track was revealed earlier this week, with the remainder of the tracks set for release this Friday through RMA (Rogue Music Alliance), on the anniversary of the artist’s death.
“The songs were written and recorded when Prince was an independent artist, protesting what he saw as an unjust music industry”, a press release from RMA explained. “In the spirit of that independence, and in supporting Prince’s opinion of major label contracts, Deliverance is being released independently via RMA, a Vancouver, WA based record company.”
While the label claimed that “The majority of all sales of Deliverance will benefit Prince’s estate,” that same estate has now filed a lawsuit against the producer to prevent the EP’s release, Pitchfork reports.
The lawsuit alleges that Boxill signed a confidentiality agreement stating that any work completed with Prince “would remain Prince’s sole and exclusive property, and claims that the release of the EP would “permanently and irreparably” damage Prince’s Paisley Park estate.
“I believe Deliverance is a timely release with everything going on in the world today, and in light of the one-year anniversary of his passing”, Boxill said when announcing the release. “I hope when people hear Prince singing these songs it will bring comfort to many.
“Prince once told me that he would go to bed every night thinking of ways to bypass major labels and get his music directly to the public. When considering how to release this important work, we decided to go independent because that’s what Prince would have wanted.”
Apparently Prince’s estate strongly disagree on that last point.