Prince Sets Date And Stores For "Crystal Ball"

Last July (see "Prince's 'Crystal Ball' Online"), the artist first made the collection available via his "Love 4 One Another" website. Then, as MTV News reported on-air last month, he forged an agreement with the Minneapolis-based Best Buy electronics chain to carry a four-CD version of the collection, minus the instrumental "Kama Sutra" disc.

Now, the artist has announced similar agreements with Musicland and Blockbuster music stores and says that he will soon work out similar pacts with independent retailers.

Prince said these particular retail chains were chosen because of the success they found with his 1996 "Emancipation" release, as Best Buy, Musicland, and Blockbuster raked up the largest percentage of total sales of the album.

The set is currently scheduled to hit stores on March 1, while fans who ordered the full 5-CD set via the Internet should

be receiving their copies any day now. The artist is taking the "Crystal Ball" presence on the Net one step further with the launch of the collection's official website (at www.crystalballcd.newfunk.com).