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New Power Generation


New Power Generation

"New Power Generation" redirects here. For the Prince song, see New Power Generation (song).

The New Power Generation
Origin Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
Genres Rock, pop, R&B, soul, funk, funk rock, funk metal, New Wave, dance, psychedelic rock, hip hop
Years active 1990–2009
Associated acts Madhouse, Nick Jonas and the Administration
Members Prince
Morris Hayes
Liv Warfield
Elisa Dease
Shelby J
Ida Nielsen
Cassandra O'Neal
Past members Michael Bland
Tommy Barbarella
Josh Dunham
Cora Coleman Dunham
Sonny T.
Rosie Gaines
Tony M.
Kirk Johnson
Damon Dickson
Levi Seacer, Jr.
Mayte Garcia
Rhonda Smith
Kat Dyson
Mike Scott
Renato Neto

The New Power Generation, also known as The NPG, was the backing group of musician Prince from 1990 to 2009.


The phrase "Welcome to the New Power Generation" was mentioned on the opening track of 1988's Lovesexy. New Power Generation was used for the first time as a band name in the 1990 film Graffiti Bridge, and a song entitled "New Power Generation" appeared on the accompanying soundtrack album.

The New Power Generation debuted live during the Nude Tour in 1990 and on record on the 1991 album Diamonds and Pearls. The band consisted of holdovers from the Nude Tour Michael Bland (drums), Levi Seacer, Jr. (guitar), Rosie Gaines (keyboards and backing vocals), Tony M. (lead raps and dancing), Kirk Johnson (percussion and dancing) and Damon Dickson (dancing), along with two new members Tommy Barbarella (keyboards) and Sonny T. (bass). Rosie Gaines left the band after the Diamonds and Pearls Tour and was replaced by keyboardist Morris Hayes.

When Prince began his formal dispute with Warner Bros. and changed his stage name to an unpronounceable symbol in 1993, the NPG became a side-project for Prince, allowing him to release music outside of his contract. The NPG was intended to appeal to a more urban audience than Prince's mainstream material.

The NPG's debut album, Goldnigga, featured Tony M. as lead vocalist/rapper. The album relied heavily on rap, while the music itself was reminiscent of 1970s funk. Prince participated heavily in writing and performing the music, while Tony wrote and performed raps. Prince provided co-lead vocals on two songs, "Black M.F. in the House" and "Johnny", and the two were often performed by him in his own concerts and aftershows.

A reduced NPG returned to the Prince fold when he began performing under the symbolic moniker in early 1994, backing him on The Gold Experience. The rappers and dancers were let go, and Levi Seacer left the band as well. Given an expanded role in the band was dancer Mayte Garcia who provided backing and Spanish vocals. This incarnation released Exodus in 1995. Prince again took a role behind the scenes, adopting the guise of the masked "Tora Tora" and performing lead vocals on several tracks, sometimes with an altered voice. His participation in this version of the NPG was much more apparent. Although several raps were recorded for the album, they were left out of the final release, and the focus was more on funk.

In 1996, longstanding members Michael Bland, Tommy Barbarella and Sonny T. were fired and a new band was formed for touring. Guitarists Kat Dyson and Mike Scott, along with bassist Rhonda Smith joined Morris Hayes and Kirk Johnson, who re-joined the band to play drums. In 1998, another NPG album was released titled Newpower Soul (modifying a song title from Exodus). In fact, a spoken outtake from Exodus mentions the upcoming album, indicating its planning stages. Prince features prominently on the cover and liner notes and provides lead vocals on all songs. Unlike the two previous releases, the album relies heavily on drum programming by Kirk Johnson and features input from Larry Graham and Doug E. Fresh.

A fourth album, Peace, due to be released in 2001, never materialized, although a few songs have been made public through limited-release singles at concerts or through Prince's former official website, NPG Music Club.

The band since then has been a "revolving door" of musicians, who usual stay for a couple years before being replaced. It's often nebulous who's actually an 'official' member. The best method would be to check Prince's current touring band.

In 2010, three former members of the original New Power Generation, drummer Michael Bland, keyboardist Tommy Barbarella and bass player Sonny T., became members of Nick Jonas and the Administration (a side project of Nick Jonas of the Jonas Brothers).[1]


This is the discography of The New Power Generation, credited as a separate entity from Prince.


Year Album US UK[2][3] Worldwide sales (when available) Additional information
1990 Graffiti Bridge 6 1 2.0 million Unnamed New Power Generation members provided backing vocals on the song "New Power Generation".
1991 Diamonds and Pearls 3 2 7.0 million Album by Prince and The New Power Generation.
1992 Love Symbol 5 1 3.5 million Album by Prince and The New Power Generation.
1993 Goldnigga - - - Album by The New Power Generation. Tony M. performs lead vox.
1995 Exodus - 11 - Album by The New Power Generation. Sonny T. performs lead vox.
1996 Girl 6 75 - - Includes "Count the Days", from Exodus and title track is credited to The New Power Generation, with Prince on lead vox.
1998 Newpower Soul 22 38 500,000 Album by The New Power Generation, but Prince's symbol (stylized) and portrait is on the front cover.
2002 One Nite Alone... Live! Album by Prince and The New Power Generation
2003 C-Note Album by Prince and The New Power Generation
2004 The Chocolate Invasion - - - The New Power Generation is credited for the track "Gamillah".
The Slaughterhouse - - - The New Power Generation is credited for the tracks "Peace", "2045: Radical Man", and "The Daisy Chain".
2006 3121 1 9 1.38 million The New Power Generation is credited for "shouts" on the song "Lolita".


Year Song US US R&B US Dance UK[2][3] Album
1990 "New Power Generation" Provided backing vox 64 27 - 26 Graffiti Bridge
1991 "Gett Off" by Prince and The New Power Generation 21 6 1 4 Diamonds and Pearls
"Cream" by Prince and The New Power Generation 1 - - 15
"Diamonds and Pearls"
by Prince and The New Power Generation
3 1 - 25
1992 "Money Don't Matter 2 Night"
by Prince and The New Power Generation
23 14 - 19
"Insatiable" by Prince and The New Power Generation 77 3 - -
"Thunder" by Prince and The New Power Generation - - - 28
"Sexy MF"/"Strollin'" by Prince and The New Power Generation 66 76 - 4 Love Symbol/Diamonds and Pearls
"My Name Is Prince"
by Prince and The New Power Generation
36 25 9 7 Love Symbol
"My Name Is Prince" (remixes)
by Prince and The New Power Generation
- - - 51 -
"7" by Prince and The New Power Generation 7 61 - 27 Love Symbol
"The Morning Papers"
by Prince and The New Power Generation
44 68 - 52
"Damn U" by Prince and The New Power Generation 108 32 - -
1993 "2gether" - - - - Goldnigga
"Nothing Compares 2 U" by Prince and The New Power Generation - 62 - - The Hits/The B-Sides; B-side to "Peach"
1994 "Get Wild" - - - 19 Exodus
"Count the Days" - - - -
"Super Hero" by The New Power Generation featuring The Steeles - - - - Blankman: Music from the Motion Picture
1995 "Purple Medley" The New Power Generation contributes "additional music" 84 74 - 33 -
"The Good Life" - - - 29 Exodus
1996 "Girl 6" - 78 - - Girl 6
1997 "The Good Life" (re-issue) - - - 15 Exodus
1998 "The War" - - - - -
"The One" - 44 - - Newpower Soul
"Come On" - - - 65
2001 "Peace"/"2045: Radical Man" - - - - The Slaughterhouse
"The Daisy Chain"/"Gamillah" - - - - The Slaughterhouse/The Chocolate Invasion
2002 "Days of Wild" by Prince and The New Power Generation - - - - -
2004 "Controversy (Live in Hawaii)" by Prince and The New Power Generation - - - - -

See also


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