Ice Cream Castle is the Time's most commercially successful album, spurred on by the success of the film Purple Rain, in which the band co-starred, and the band's two biggest hit singles, "Jungle Love" and "The Bird."
In the movie, Prince's band and the Time face off in a heated competition to win the adoration of the crowd at Minneapolis's premier club, First Avenue. And while the movie is partially fictionalized, there is some element of truth in that spirit of competition; Prince and the Time's founding members like Jimmy Jam, Terry Lewis, Jellybean Johnson, and Morris Day all cut their teeth performing in Battle of the Bands showcases against one another in the 1970s, and they continued to push each other to get better and better, even as their respective careers were all taking off.
"To this day, they're the only band I've ever been afraid of."”
Prince, Rolling Stone, 1990
By the time Purple Rain debuted, the Time was in flux. Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis had left the band in 1983 in the midst of the massive 1999 Tour, and by the summer of 1984 the entire group had disbanded and three of its members, Jellybean Johnson, St. Paul Peterson, and Jerome Benton, were beginning to transition to another Prince side project, the Family. Many thought that Ice Cream Castle would be the Time's final album, but thankfully that wasn't the case; they would reunite for a new album, Pandemonium, and star in Prince's Purple Rain sequel Graffiti Bridge in 1990.
Borrowing its title from a Joni Mitchell lyric, Ice Cream Castle was written by Prince and features contributions from many of the Time's members, with production credits split between Prince, Morris Day, and Jesse Johnson. The album rose to number 24 on the Billboard 200 and sold over 1 million copies, earning a platinum certification by the RIAA in January 1985.
Ice Cream Castle Album Credits
Prince vocals and various instruments Morris Day vocals, drums Jesse Johnson vocals, guitar, drums Sharon Hughes vocals Novi Novog violin Mark Cardenas vocal, keyboards Paul Peterson vocal, keyboards Jerry Hubbard bass guitar, vocals Jellybean Johnson drums Jerome Benton percussion, vocals Jill Jones vocals