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Prince, Warner Bros. Records (1979) Prince © 1979, Warner Bros. Records
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Prince

Warner Bros. Records

It was for radio rather than for me, but it got a lot of people interested in my music.

The eponymous Prince album is often mistaken as the artist’s debut release, which is in fact Prince’s second studio album. Like his debut album For You, Prince wrote every song as well performed every instrument heard on it. It was also his first album supported by a tour; during which, and unusually, he performed every song from that album.

Prince was recorded at Alpha Studios in Burbank, California, over a mere six week period between April and June 1979. The studio was located in the home of its owner, sound engineer Gary Brandt, who helped Prince create the album. Prince explores many genres – funk, soul, even heavy metal, yet is a more toned-down production to For You, using less instruments. Prince is a simpler affair having tried too hard with the previous album to use every trick in the book and dominating the studio, he had parted company with his manager Owen Husney and the quiet home setting of Alpha Studios, he instead learned from Brandt the nuanced details of sound engineering.

The track I Feel For You although was not released as a single for Prince, it was later re-recorded by and became a number one hit for Chaka Khan. Her version of the song won Prince a Grammy in 1984 for Best R&B Song. Notably, during the recording  sessions for Prince the song Purple Rain was also conceived. Prince sold 1m units in the US and saw Prince awarded his first RIAA certification, for Platinum, on 21 February 1980, in the main due do its lead single I Wanna Be Your Lover. That single also received RIAA certification, Gold, on 18 March 1980 as Prince’s first hit song. Prince charted at number 22 on Billboard as well as remained in the Black Top 100 for 23 weeks.

Prince 1979
Photography by Richard E. Aaron

Performers

All Instruments
Prince

Data

Production
Prince and Gary Brandt (uncredited)
Label
Warner Bros. Records
Distribution
Warner Bros. Records
Cover/Design
Jurgen Reisch and Terry Taylor
Released
41 years, 6 months ago on 19 October 1979
Running Time
40:54
US Chart Peak
22
UK Chart Peak
Not charted
Prince Album
#2
Orig. Formats

Tracklist

  1. I Wanna Be Your Lover (5:47) 1
  2. Why You Wanna Treat Me So Bad? [feat. André Cymone] (3:49) 1
  3. Sexy Dancer (4:18) 1
  4. When We're Dancing Close And Slow (5:18)
  5. With You (3:59)
  6. Bambi (4:22)
  7. Still Waiting (4:24) 1
  8. I Feel For You (3:24)
  9. It's Gonna Be Lonely (5:30)

1 Released as singles.

Singles from Prince

I Wanna Be Your Lover single from Prince, Warner Bros. Records (1979)

I Wanna Be Your Lover

Warner Bros. Records

Released
24 August 1979
US Chart Peak
11
UK Chart Peak
41
Format
  1. I Wanna Be Your Lover (5:47)
  2. Just As Long As We're Together (6:24)
Why You Wanna Treat Me So Bad? single from Prince, Warner Bros. Records (1980)

Why You Wanna Treat Me So Bad?

Warner Bros. Records

Released
23 January 1980
US Chart Peak
13
UK Chart Peak
-
Format
  1. Why You Wanna Treat Me So Bad? [feat. André Cymone] (3:49)
  2. Baby (3:09)
Still Waiting single from Prince, Warner Bros. Records (1980)

Still Waiting

Warner Bros. Records

Released
25 March 1980
US Chart Peak
-
UK Chart Peak
-
Format
  1. Still Waiting [Edit] (3:48)
  2. Bambi (4:22)
Sexy Dancer single from Prince, Warner Bros. Records (1980)

Sexy Dancer

Warner Bros. Records

Released
11 April 1980
US Chart Peak
No Release
UK Chart Peak
-
Format
  1. Sexy Dancer (4:18)
  2. Bambi (4:22)
Bambi single from Prince, Warner Bros. Records (1980)

Bambi

Warner Bros. Records

Released
19 September 1980
US Chart Peak
No Release
UK Chart Peak
No Release [Belgium only]
Format
  1. Bambi (4:22)
  2. Still Waiting [Edit] (3:48)

Supporting tour

Prince Tour

Prince Tour

1979/80

  • 14 shows from 26 November 1979 to 17 February 1980
  • 42 shows as support act for Rick James ‘Fire It Up Tour’, from 22 February to 3 May, 1980

Prince – review

Prince is the eponymous album and the one that would also provide Prince the fledgling pop star, his springboard hit: I Wanna Be Your Lover and starts off a surprisingly solid album for what was then the youngest record producer in history. Naming the album after his own name confuses many to believe that his was his debut, which in a kind of way it is, as many of the songs on it was out takes from the first album For You. Prince – the album – reminds us how the soulful dude Prince – the man – really is. Unlike his following albums although the narrative is focused on sex, Prince keeps proceedings refined and allows the music wallow in the foreplay. Bambi is quite possibly Prince’s best guitar riffs on any of his later releases and single-handedly elevates Prince to Platinum selling standard. I Feel For You is be the track everyone knows better as Chaka Khan’s version, which she rebooted it in 1984, but it’s the original on this album that gives the greater impact. It’s Gonna Be Lonely remains a personal favourite as it is true as the old adage advises, the old ones are the best. With songs like these that’s impossible to disagree.

Prince

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