The pair knew each other long before Prince found fame, where Dave Rusan had auditioned for one of Prince’s early bands. It didn’t work out, but they remained friends, and Rusan ended up being commissioned to create one unique instrument for the 1984 film.
Rusan made four more versions of the Cloud Guitar until Prince’s death in 2016, when he began offering replicas for $8,000 and continued to trademark his designs. That led to a lawsuit from Paisley Park demanding he give up the trademark, apparently linked to the estate offering their own version of Cloud for $1,750.
Rusan now says the problem is solved. “I feel very relieved; I feel that a huge burden has been lifted,’ he says 5 Eyewitness news in St. Paul, Minn. “It doesn’t feel good to have someone trying to tell you what you can and can’t do.”
Watch Prince Playing the Cloud Guitar in ‘Purple Rain’
Their arrangement is confidential, but Rusan added: “All I can say is that it was amicable. I’m very happy that we can come together and both move on.”
He says “I think I’m honoring Prince’s memory by doing it. It seemed like I should continue the fight, because it seemed like the right thing to do.” In response to the proposal, it had been a “David vs. Goliath” battle with Prince’s estate, Rusan pointed out, “I got the right name for it!”
This new agreement suggests progress in planning the future of Prince’s legacy by the various stakeholders in his estate finally decided their disagreements with their own legal agreement last month.
“I want nothing from them other than to be left alone to make my guitars for appreciative fans of Prince and the guitar I got him to play in Purple rain” said Rusan Guitar world in 2019.
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They took “going solo” to a whole new level.
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