RIAA Platinum LP award for Prince's classic Purple Rain album, which was released on June 25, 1984. The album was certified Platinum by the RIAA on May 29, 1984 for one million copies sold. The award is presented to Chick Huntsberry, a.k.a. "Big Chick," (1941-1990) who was Prince's bodyguard from 1981-85 and who also appeared as himself in the film Purple Rain.
The album made a huge impact, in part driven by the film and MTV video airplay, with singles "When Doves Cry" and "Let's Go Crazy" hitting #1 on the Billboard Hot 100. In addition, the title track reached #2 and "I Would Die 4 U" hit #8. It won Grammy awards for Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media and Best Rock Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal. It also garnered an Oscar for Best Original Song Score. By 1996 the album had gone to 13x Multi-Platinum, becoming a rare RIAA Diamond certified album, and Prince's biggest-selling album. See image above for the RIAA sales certifications of this album through the years*.
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- RIAA Platinum LP award
- First presentation award from 1984
- Presented to Prince's bodyguard who also appeared in the Purple Rain film
- Letter of provenance included
- In VG to Excellent condition
- Known as a "floater" award because the components appear to "float" above the matte, they were reportedly made by an unknown manufacturer later than RIAA standards dictated from 1981-85
- RIAA "floater" awards numbered only 25-50 plaques worldwide for any given single/album
- Award measures approx. 17" x 21"
- Beautiful and rare collector's item for any Prince fan
- FREE insured shipping to continental U.S.
- International shipping available
Detailed Item Description: This is a first presentation RIAA Platinum award that would have been manufactured in 1984, making it approximately 38 years old. It is presented to Prince's bodyguard from 1981-85 Chick Huntsberry, a.k.a. "Big Chick" (1941-1990), who also appeared in the Purple Rain film as himself. He also previously served as a bodyguard for Angus Young of AC/DC and others. Big Chick and Prince were close enough that, when Chick died in 1990, Prince held a benefit concert in April that year at Rupert’s night club in Minnesota and raised $45,000 to help his family with expenses.(Article: https://www.swnewsmedia.com/chanhassen_villager/news/local/big-chick-connection/article_f2827c6c-d834-5473-8ace-9a13f6f1d2f2.html)
The award is accompanied by a Letter of Provenance of the owner we acquired it from, who is a family member of an attorney who represented Big Chick at one point who he gifted this award to. (See redacted image of the letter. Buyer will receive unredacted original, notarized letter with purchase).
Here's an image that shows Big Chick with Prince (this is an audio-only clip of Big Chick talking at a church, as he often did later in life):
The award is in VG condition. It has only a few typical scratches and mars on the frame and plexiglass. The backing paper could be original but no manufacturer sticker is present. This is most likely a "grey area floater" award made in the 80s by an unknown manufacturer, possibly possibly a former staffer from Fitzgerald Hartley. Many Warner Bros. awards from this era share these characteristics. For more information on awards such as this, see the section on "floater awards" in our record award guide article here.
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Notes on the condition of all vintage RIAA awards like this one: Please do not buy this item if you want a brand new piece of memorabilia. These are historical artifacts from the year they were produced. As a result they may show signs of wear. Frankly, if you see a 20 to 50-year-old award purported to be in 100% perfect condition, it might be too good to be true. After all, an antique should have "good" wear. If not, you might want to question the piece.
As to where they came from, they could have been displayed in record label offices, recording studios, artist manager's offices, radio stations, private collector's homes and yes, of course, possibly the artist's or songwriter's home. Typically, we don't know all the places they may have been over the years other than what we've stated in the description.
Finally, a word on photos: Our photos are zoomable so you can get a very good look. Do let us know if you want photos of any other details on our pieces and we'll be happy to provide.
*RIAA sales data source: RIAA.com