Arista to release Prince disc

'Rave' among WB vault revivals

Arista Records has pacted with Prince to release his latest disc, the “Rave Un2 the Joy Fantastic.”

The deal, a licensing pact through Prince’s NPG Records imprint, comes as Warner Bros. is releasing a disc of tracks from its vaults.

“The Artist has it all: soul, contemporary edge, funk, pop and rock,” Arista prexy Clive Davis said. ” … The new album passionately showcases all those elements in a way that is as electrifying as anything he has ever done.”

Arista will kick off the disc, which was produced by Prince and boasts tracks with Chuck D., Sheryl Crow and No Doubt’s Gwen Stefani, among others, with the first single “The Greatest Romance Ever Sold.” The album will bow in November.

“Although we continue to directly distribute music, I am pleased to have had this opportunity to pair the new album with Clive Davis and Arista,” said Prince’s rep, L. Londell McMillan, who shepherded the deal.

Prince has eschewed major label deals since exiting Warner Bros. in 1995 and striking a licensing agreement the following year with EMI, a deal that was jettisoned in a round of restructuring at the British music conglom.

Before Arista, Prince marketed his music via the Internet and direct mail, including the five-disc set “Crystal Ball.”

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