Pop star Prince dies aged 57

Prince has died at the age of 57.

The singer's body was discovered at his Paisley Park home in Minnesota on Thursday morning.

His publicist Yvette Noel-Schure, told The Associated Press the music icon was found dead at his home Thursday in Chanhassen.

He was taken ill earlier this month when his private jet was forced to make an emergency landing in Illinois, but he appeared in concert the next day and told fans he was fine.

Prince has died at the age of 57 Credit: Reuters

The singer, who was born Prince Rogers Nelson, had cancelled two shows before that appearance.

His representatives told showbiz site TMZ that he had been suffering from flu.

One of the best-selling artists of all time, Prince rose to prominence in the mid-70s and went on to sell more than 100 million records, reaching the peak of his fame in 1982 with the release of his album 1999.

He has won seven Grammys, an Oscar and a Golden Globe.

Prince in 1995 Credit: Reuters

The singer, songwriter, arranger and instrumentalist was widely acclaimed as one of the most inventive musicians of his era, drawing upon influences ranging from James Brown to the Beatles to Jimi Hendrix.

His hits included Little Red Corvette, Purple Rain, Raspberry Beret, Let's Go Crazy and When Doves Cry.

The Minneapolis native broke through with the hits Wanna Be Your Lover and soared over the following decade with such albums as 1999 and Purple Rain.

He was married to his backup dancer Mayte Garcia from 1996 to 2000. He then married Manuela Testolini in 2001 but they split five years later.

As well as his musical genius and a love of purple, the singer was known for eccentric career moves, such as changing his name to an unpronounceable symbol in the 1990s.

He was in the process of writing an untitled autobiography which was due to be published in 2017.