As a practicing Jehovah’s Witness, Prince did not believe in observing his birthday. So on what would have been his 58th birthday, we are going to celebrate the gift of song that he gave to other singers. Here are 10 hits written by Prince — a few might actually surprise you.
“Manic Monday” - The Bangles, 1986
After seeing a Bangles concert in Los Angeles, Prince sent this song to the fledgling all-female L.A. quartet. He reportedly had written the song earlier for Apollonia 6, the female trio he’d put together.
“Nothing Compares 2 U” - Sinéad O’Connor, 1990
Maybe you’ve heard of this one? Prince wrote it for his 1985 side project the Family. But Prince’s manager later delivered the tune to another of his clients, the buzz-cut, doe-eyed Irish singer.
“Round and Round” - Tevin Campbell, 1990
This Michael Jackson-evoking protégé of Quincy Jones cut this song as his debut single. It may have been the biggest success associated with Prince’s much maligned third movie, “Graffiti Bridge.”
“Stand Back” - Stevie Nicks, 1983
She was humming to his “Little Red Corvette” and began composing lyrics. So she called Prince to come play on the record (which he did), offering him half the royalties.
“The Glamorous Life” - Sheila E, 1984
Originally intended to be performed by Vanity before she exited pre-“Purple Rain” filming, this song ended up on Sheila’s debut. Her version also jumped to No. 1 on the dance charts.
“I Feel for You” - Chaka Khan, 1984
This tune appeared on Prince’s self-titled second album in 1979, but Khan reworked it, complete with a rap break. Her version led to Prince winning a Grammy for best R&B song.
“Jungle Love” - The Time, 1984
Prince created the Time and crafted its sound, but Time guitarist Jesse Johnson claims he wrote this hit from “Purple Rain” and sold the copyright to Prince for a five-figure sum.
“Love … Thy Will Be Done” - Martika, 1991
After scoring the hit “Toy Soldier” on her debut album, she reached out to Prince for some songs. He looked at her notebook at Paisley Park and wrote this hymn-like song based on her words. He penned three other songs for her second album.
“A Love Bizarre” - Sheila E, 1986
It’s the only track on her second album that lists Prince as a co-writer. The song was actually a duet between the two lovers.
“Sugar Walls” - Sheena Easton, 1985
Were they lovers? This song filled with sexy double entendres suggests so, but the track didn’t have the legs of their subsequent hit duet, “U Got the Look.”
“Jerk Out” - The Time, 1990
Written in the early 1980s, this tune didn’t appear until the Time’s reunion album “Pandemonium,” which was connected to their appearance in Prince’s “Graffiti Bridge.”
5 more written by Prince
Kenny Rogers, “You’re My Love” (1986)
Madonna, “Love Song” (1989)
Patti LaBelle, “Yo Mister” (1989)
Paula Abdul, “U” (1991)
Celine Dion, “With This Tear” (1992)