Prince & Madonna

By Tijana Tamburic

The Artist formally known as Prince was a multi-instrumentalist, singer, songwriter, producer and actor who saw the world through purple-tinted glasses. Standing at just 5’2, but with the stage presence of a giant, he sold over 100 million records worldwide, making him one of the best-selling artists of all time.

Minneapolis’ favourite son was a whirlwind of creativity that knew no bounds and he will be immortalized for it, not only for his own songs but the songs he wrote or produced for other artists. So, as our humble tribute to Prince we will list our favourite songs he wrote for female artists.

1. “Nothing Compares 2 U by Sinead O’Connor

This might be the most famous song Prince wrote for another artist and while he had dozens of hits, Sinead O’Connor only really had one with this song in 1990. The music video has since been voted one of the best videos of all time by many sources.

2. “Manic Monday” by The Bangles

The rock band broke out in 1986 with this song written by Prince (under the pseudonym Christopher). “Manic Monday” was the first single of their second record “Different Light.”

3. “When You Were Mine” by Cyndi Lauper

This song was a b-side to Cyndi Lauper’s “Controversy” in 1981.

4. “How Come You Don’t Call Me Anymore” by Alicia Keys

This song was a b-side on Prince’s song “1999” in 1982. Alicia Keys covered the song in 2001 to much success.

5. “Stand Back” by Stevie Nicks

Prince co-wrote “Stand Back” with Stevie Nicks, which sounds very similar to “Little Red Corvette,” when she went solo in 1983.

6.”I Feel For You” by Chaka Khan

Prince actually wrote “I Feel For You” in 1979, but Chaka Khan covered it and it became a monster hit in 1984, which was also the same year as Purple Rain and the next song on this list.

7.”The Glamourous Life” by Sheila E

Prince originally wrote the song for Apollonia 6, but it just feels better for Sheila E, don’t you think? Prince gave her the song in 1984.

8. “Love Song” by Madonna

She co-wrote “Love Song” with Prince for the record “Like a Prayer” in 1989. He also sang backup vocals and  played guitar on the song.

9. “Sugar Walls” by Sheena Easton

Prince used the pseudonym Alexander Nevermind to write this song for Sheena Easton in 1984. When asked in 1999 why he used to so pseudonyms Prince said “I was just getting tired of seeing my name. If you give away an idea, you still own that idea. In fact, giving it away strengthens it. Why do people feel they have to take credit for everything they do? Ego, that’s the only reason.”

10. “Love… Thy Will Be Done” by Martika

Two years after her chart-topping hit “Toy Soldiers,” Martika sought out Prince for help with her second LP. He ended up writing four of the 10 songs on Martika’s Kitchen, including the somber and meditative “Love… Thy Will Be Done.” She calls it a hymn, but it actually started out as prayer Martika had written in a notebook she brought along to their sole meeting at Paisley Park. He borrowed her book for a few hours that day and when he returned it, she says Prince told her, “I have photocopied a few things. Why don’t you just let me live with this for a bit and we’ll go from there.” A week later, back in L.A., she received a fax with the lyrics and a cassette with the music in the mail. Martika never saw him in person again, but “Love… Thy Will Be Done” became a hit in the U.S., and an occasional touring song for Prince himself.

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April 25, 2016