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This breathtaking Prince performance with Tom Petty almost didn't happen...

The star stunned the crowd and even his fellow band members with this barnstorming performance.
Apr 23rd 2016, 6:00 PM 37,067 38

PRINCE, AS ANYONE with a passing interest in music will be aware, was fiercely protective of his image and music.

The footage of his performance alongside (amongst others) Tom Petty in 2004 at the Rock ‘n Roll Hall of Fame was widely shared in the wake of the mononymous star’s untimely death on Thursday night.

In part, that was down to the fact that his guitar solo on My Guitar Gently Weeps is of the few clips of the star regularly available to view on YouTube.

But it’s also – as you’ll soon see if you haven’t watched this before – a jaw-droppingly impressive live performance…

Source: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame/YouTube

As Rolling Stone notes, the show-stealing solo could be the greatest musical moment ever at a Rock ‘n Roll Hall of Fame ceremony.

The band lineup, which also included Jeff Lynne and Steve Winwood, was put together for George Harrison’s posthumous induction in 2004.

But as the US rock magazine reports, it almost never happened – as Harrison’s widow Olivia wanted to limit the performance of her late husband’s song to people who knew him.

She was persuaded to change her mind, though – and no doubt was pretty satisfied with her decision when she saw the thrilled looks on the faces of Petty and co, when Prince let rip.

“They rehearsed it a bunch of times, and every time you could see this was going to tear the roof off the place,” band leader Paul Shaffer said.

But Prince kept a little something in reserve for the actual performance itself. He really did show what a great guitarist he was. He just killed it that night.

To this day perhaps we’ll never know – did that guitar ever come down?..

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Related: Prime Time played out with a lovely tribute to Prince last night

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Daragh Brophy

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