Sinéad O'Connor - Nothing Compares 2 U
The "2 U" portion of the title was probably a dead giveaway, eh? Sinead O'Connor's mega-selling monster ballad was originally a composition that Prince created for the Minneapolis outfit The Family, which was a band signed to the Purple One's label that featured a few ex-members of The Time. The Family packed it in after one album, but the cut "Nothing Compares 2 U" wouldn't take off until Sinead released her take on the tune a few years later. Prince had since trotted out his own rendition of the track both in concert and on a variety of live and compilation releases. "I loved his music, but I had absolutely no idea or expectation that that single would be such a big hit," offered Sinead in an interview with Uncut in 2013. "Did I ever meet Prince? I did and... we didn't like each other. At all. Ha ha! I'm not going to go into it, but we detest each other..."
The Bangles - Manic Monday
Was Sunday actually Prince's "I don't have to run day" or is that just a carefully placed lyrical flourish designed to add panache to a delightful pop song? THE MYSTERIES OF SONGCRAFT! This Prince-penned track earned The Bangles their first U.S. chart hit. As fate would have it, this bouncy tune would be denied the #1 spot on th Billboard Hot 100 by Prince's sexy smash "Kiss". Originally, "Manic Monday" was destined to appear on Apollonia 6's self-titled debut, but the tune was kept in storage until it was later offered to The Bangles. Legend (read: general rumours) has it that Prince provided the track in a bid to woo Susanna Hoffs.
Chaka Khan - I Feel For You
In 1985, Prince earned the Grammy for Best R&B Song and wound up beating out another one of his compositions in the process. (We'll get to the other nominee in the next slide.) Chaka Khan's hit single "I Feel For You" is a cover of a track that appeared on Prince's 1979 self-titled album. Before the R&B songstress recorded her version of the tune, it was previously covered by The Pointer Sisters and Rebbie Jackson. Chaka Khan and Prince would later team up for Come 2 My House, an album that popped in 1998 in between Chaka Khan Best-Ofs.
Sheila E. - The Glamorous Life
Wondering which Prince song "I Feel For You" beat out to win the 1985 Best R&B Song Grammy? It would be this Sheila E. recording. Just like "Manic Monday," this track was earmarked for a spot on Apollonia 6's debut album. (Prince supposedly yanked the tune when Apollonia revealed she wasn't planning to stick around longer than her contract required.) Sheila E. earned a Top 10 hit with "The Glamorous LIfe" and also scored a moderately successful follow-up single with (the also Prince-penned) "The Belle of St. Mark."
Stevie Nicks - Stand Back
If you've ever heard the Stevie Nicks tune "Stand Back" and thought "boy, that sounds a bit like Prince," it's not a coincidence. The Fleetwood Mac star cooked up the song after getting inspired by the hit "Little Red Corvette." Prince would later join Nicks in the recording studio to offer up his synthesizer expertise, although his co-writing credit does have a habit of disappearing from time to time. What happened after the recording session? "He just walked out of my life, and I didn't see him for a long time," shared Nicks. The tune proved to be a hit, cracking the Top 5 of the Billboard Hot 100.
Sheena Easton - Sugar Walls
The PMRC (Parents Music Resource Center)'s infamous "Filthy Fifteen" featured two Prince compositions within its ranks: "Darling Nikki" and the Sheena Easton hit "Sugar Walls." The Scottish chanteuse's professional pairing with The Purple One helped signal the artist's shift from sweeter fare like "Morning Train (Nine to Five)" to notably more brash content. Like a number of tracks in this roundup, this track is credited to a Prince pseudonym. In this case: Alexander Nevermind. (Other pseudonyms include "Christopher," "Paisley Park" and "The Starr Company.")
Kid Creole & The Coconuts - The Sex Of It
Bandphoto/ZUMA Press/KEYSTONE Press/KEYSTONE Press
Prince working with Kid Creole & The Coconuts just feels right, y'know? After all, both parties are legendary live acts with a knack for knowing their way around a saucy lyric or two. In 1990, a Prince-crafted track ("The Sex Of It") appeared on the Kid Creole & The Coconuts full-length Private Waters in the Great Divide. "The Sex Of It" was a UK hit for the group, with Prince doing the majority of the instrumental heavy lifting on the song.
Cyndi Lauper - When You Were Mine
Aces Angels/Burgess/Picture Grou/KEYSTONE Press
Cyndi Lauper's studio debut She's So Unusual features a number of covers and reconfigured tunes. There's "Money Changes Everything" (a single from The Brains), "Girls Just Want To Have Fun" (originally a Robert Hazard track) and the 1980 Prince cut "When You Were Mine." Cyndi would later perform her version of the song in front of its maker at the 1985 American Music Awards.
The Time - Jerk Out (Plus Loads Of Other Tracks)
It's probably not much of a surprise to learn that Prince worked with The Time on multiple occasions. The diminutive rock legend paired up with his Purple Rain/Graffiti Bridge co-stars for a variety of tracks and albums. Hits like "Jerk Out," "Jungle Love" and "Get It Up" have Prince's fingerprints all over them.
Alicia Keys - How Come You Don't Call Me
The 2001 Alicia Keys single "How Come You Don't Call Me" can trace its roots back to the B-side of Prince's "1999." (Of course, the original version had the far more Prince-friendly title of "How Come U Don't Call Me Anymore.") Prince clearly approved of Alicia's rendition. He had the "Fallin'" star duet with him in concert, sharing this very track.