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Prince Came So Close to Becoming the Purple Piano Man

4/29/2016 12:30 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
Exclusive Details

42616-prince-piano-gettyThe customized piano Prince played at his final public performance was thiiis close to getting him to do something he almost NEVER did ... sign a big time endorsement deal.

Yamaha exec, Chris Gero, tells TMZ the company started negotiations with Prince's reps 4 months ago. The plan was for Yamaha to provide instruments and round-the-clock service for the remainder of Prince's "Piano & A Microphone" tour.

Yamaha sent Prince a $200,000 purple grand piano a few days before he died in hopes of closing the deal -- and it seemed to be working. Prince excitedly tweeted about it, and had it onstage with him when he played briefly during his Paisley Park dance party on the Saturday before his death.

0428-prince-purple-piano-stage-paisley-park-TWITTER-01Gero says all signs were pointing to them closing the deal when Prince died.

As for what happens to the piano? Yamaha owns it -- since the deal was never inked -- and it's still at Paisley Park. Gero says they've already been contacted by several museums -- including the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame -- looking to lock down Prince memorabilia.

Prince Sister Storms Out of Family Meeting Money Fight Looms

4/28/2016 3:31 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

0428-prince-tyka-getty-ap-01It didn't take long ... Prince's sister Tyka went ballistic in the first meeting with the singer's siblings and marched out of the room ... and we're told it's already becoming a money squabble.

Sources with first-hand knowledge tell TMZ, the meeting was held Thursday in Minnesota. Tyka, Prince's younger sister, was present, along with brothers Alfred and Omarr

We're told the meeting was tense, and 2 hours in Alfred expressed his displeasure that he was the only sibling excluded from Prince's memorial service, which Tyka planned. We're told an argument erupted and she stormed out of the room.

We're also told the brothers have a clear impression from the meeting ... Tyka thinks she's entitled to more than them when it comes time to divide Prince's assets. As we reported, under Minnesota law all 6 siblings -- irrespective of whether they're half or full -- share equally, but apparently Tyka doesn't see it that way.

Our sources say after Tyka left, a rep from the bank that was appointed as the administrator took Alfred on a tour of Prince's home and the area where he died "so he could properly grieve."

Ellie Goulding Rays After Bey

4/28/2016 3:02 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

0428-ellie-goulding-akm-01Ellie Goulding took her flawless bikini bod to Miami's South Beach the day after taking in Beyonce's Formation concert -- where she had a killer view.

Speaking of which ... no need to ask why you got Ellie on your mind. That's kinda obvious.  

#EllieForeverToo 

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NBA's Andre Drummond I Partied With Bieber Too ... 'He's a Cool Dude'

4/28/2016 1:30 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

Nothing takes the sting out of being swept in the playoffs like a Justin Bieber concert ... so says NBA superstar Andre Drummond

The Detroit Pistons star was at LAX -- proudly displaying his VIP backstage pass to Bieber on his backpack from his concert in Michigan on Monday night ... one day after the Pistons were eliminated. 

"He's a cool dude," Drummond told us. 

AD also says Bieber put on one helluva show -- but it wasn't perfect ... he's still got some room to grow. 

As for the rest of Andre's off-season plans -- don't worry Detroit, Drummond says he'll come back even STRONGER next season. 

DJ Whoo Kid Lights Out, No License ... Arrested in NYC

4/28/2016 12:52 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

428-djwhookid-tmzDJ Whoo Kid got pulled over by cops for driving in the dark ... without his headlights, and things quickly went downhill from there 'cause he ended up getting arrested.

Whoo Kid was driving his Escalade in downtown Manhattan, around 1:30 AM Tuesday, when cops noticed his headlights were off. They also discovered his driver's license had been revoked, and there was a warrant for his arrest -- so, off to jail he went.

The Shade 45 and G-Unit DJ had a similar run-in with cops in 2014, but failed to show up for court ... hence the warrant.

Cops say he paid a fine and was released later on Tuesday.

Whoo Kid tells us he didn't realize there was a warrant out for his failure to appear in the 2014 case, since he paid the ticket. He has a June court date for this latest arrest.

#SiriSetaReminder

Usher Naked Selfie ... Just The Tip Of The Iceberg

4/28/2016 12:13 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

0428-usher-nude-shower-snapchat-05Usher just broke the cardinal rule of taking a naked selfie by posting a tad bit more than he probably realized on Snapchat.

Ursh snapped the pic Thursday and captioned it "blowin off steam" with an emoji covering his junk. Upon closer look it was hard to ignore that the emoji failed to cover all of his man parts and the tip of his dong was left sticking out.

We had to retouch it a bit since it's technically a d*** pic, but you can use your imagination and probably Google and find the real thing.

It doesn't appear he did it on purpose, but if he did, he's sending the message that size matters.

Lil Wayne No 'Respek' ... Chillin' with Birdman Foes!

4/28/2016 9:53 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

428-lil-wayne-instagramLil Wayne put ZERO 'Respek' on Birdman's name by hanging out with Rick Ross and Trick Daddy -- 2 of the guys who prompted Birdman's infamous rant.

Weezy and co. posed together in Miami right before Beyonce took the stage to kick off her tour. We don't know if the middle finger was intended for Cash Money's honcho, but he's gotta be taking it that way after his 'Breakfast Club' blowup over a lack of respek.

Remember, Charlamagne Tha God reminded Birdman that Ricky Rozay and Trick Daddy were also dissing him ... before he stormed out of the studio.

Wayne and Birdman seemed to be patching things up personally -- although they're still at war, legally -- but this pic won't help.  

Prince Search Warrant Served on Singer's House

4/28/2016 9:27 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

42716-prince-getty-02Authorities have obtained a search warrant for Prince's house, and in the docs there's an ominous warning ... if the justification for the warrant gets out it could cause others to destroy evidence.

The warrant was issued Thursday in Carver County, Minnesota, allowing cops to search the home in Paisley Park Studios, where the singer lived and died. Our sources say authorities want to see if there's evidence of drugs, correspondence, prescriptions and medical information that could help in the death investigation.

The sheriff's office says in the request for a warrant ... they want to keep the information in the warrant confidential because "premature disclosure of the details provided in the search warrant and its accompanying documents may compromise this law enforcement investigation by causing the search or related searches to be unsuccessful."

Translation ... we know authorities are interested in drugs that were prescribed by doctors and filled by pharmacies, and they don't want evidence tampering.

TMZ broke the story ... our Prince sources say it was known among close friends and family ... he had a Percocet addiction for years.

The judge ordered that the sensitive documents be sealed for 6 months or until the commencement of any criminal case.

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Sheila E. I Want to Protect Prince's Legacy NO Interest in His Money

4/28/2016 9:14 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

428-prince-sheila-tyka-02Sheila E. is doing everything she can to make sure no one exploits Prince's music or his money ... but she's NOT warring with his family over her friend's estate.

Sheila has deep concerns that vultures are looking for opportunities to profit off Prince's death -- so she's offered her support to his family and Paisley Park reps ... according to Sheila's rep.

The rep says there's no truth to reports Sheila is fighting with Tyka, Prince's sister, over the estate. She adds, Sheila "has received no compensation nor will accept compensation" ... and she's already turned down multiple offers to get paid for "tribute" concerts.

Additionally, Sheila thinks all memorial shows should be authorized by the estate and all revenues should go to Prince's favorite charities. 

Beyonce Love Fest for Jay Z ... 'Becky Beef' Squashed??

4/28/2016 6:50 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

Beyonce's Miami concert must have felt like a roller coaster ride for Jay Z -- one second she was trashing him, and the next she was gushing over him.

Bey closed her Formation world tour kick off with "Halo" and a dedication to her "beautiful husband."

Of course, earlier in the show she performed her new tracks from "Lemonade" ... which included that damned lyric about Becky and her good hair.

Jay was reportedly sitting front and center for the show -- no doubt laughing at the angry Beyhive, counting his their money in his head ... and checking out her ass.

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Prince Long-Standing Percocet Addiction

4/27/2016 4:29 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

42616-prince-getty-05Prince was addicted to Percocet for years before his death ... TMZ has learned.

Multiple sources connected with the singer's family tell us, doctors prescribed the powerful painkiller in 2009 when he was suffering from hip problems. We're told he had corrective surgery sometime around 2010, but by then he was hooked on the drug.

Our sources say Prince developed a sometimes debilitating dependence on Percocet in the years that followed.

TMZ broke the story, Prince almost died from a Percocet OD 6 days before he was found dead in an elevator.

427-prince-walgreensAnd as we reported, Prince made at least 4 trips to a Walgreens pharmacy near his home in the week leading up to his death.

We're told the feds are now investigating who prescribed the drug, who filled the prescriptions and under what circumstances.

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Iggy Azalea Becky Now Ruined as Baby Name

4/28/2016 7:20 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

Iggy Azalea thinks the furor over Beyonce's "Becky" reference in her album "Lemonade" has put it toward the bottom of the heap as a baby name.

Iggy was talkative at JFK Wednesday and wanted to make it clear ... she has no beef with Beyonce over Becky-gate.

On the subject of Nick Young ... good question by our photog about which comes first ... a Lakers championship or marriage.

Prince Mad Scramble to Cash In On Famous Image

4/28/2016 1:00 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

0427-sub-prince-rip-shirts-tmz-ebay-01A free-for-all has erupted over the right to sell merchandise with Prince's mug.  

We did some checking, and turns out there's no particular law in Minnesota that protects a person's image after he or she dies. Translation ... when Prince passed away last week, there's nothing in the law specifically prohibiting any Tom, Dick, or Harry from plastering Prince's face on t-shirts, socks, posters, key chains and all things cheesy.

It's way different from places like California and Tennessee, where courts and legislatures have given the estates of dead celebs the right to go after people who try and make a quick buck off famous images. 

Fact is ... Minnesota hasn't been home to that many deceased international celebs, so it looks like the courts have never had to deal with protection of images after death.  

As a result, there are a bunch of fly-by-night companies that are hawking R.I.P. Prince gear.

We're told Prince's siblings are aware people are profiting off Prince's image, and they're considering filing a test case. It's unclear how the Minnesota courts will rule, but for now it's the Wild Wild West in the Midwest.

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