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Sweatpants & Music | 12 Prince Songs Written for or Made Famous by Other Artists

Prince, a.k.a. Prince Rogers Nelson, was a prolific songwriter, composer, musician, and performer. But did you know he wrote these songs?

In 1985, “Nothing Compares 2 U” appeared on an album by The Family (The Family) – a funk band side project of Prince’s. It was not released as a single; hardly anyone took note. Five years later, however, Irish singer Sinéad O’Connor recorded a cover of the song for her album I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got and it went on to become a hit.

“Manic Monday” was the first single released by The Bangles off their album, Different Light, in 1986. Prince wrote the song using an alias, “Christopher.” He had originally written it for Apollonia 6 two years earlier. It reached number 2 on the U.S. charts, becoming The Bangles’ first hit song.

In 1983, Stevie Nicks was inspired to write “Stand Back” after hearing Prince’s “Little Red Corvette” on the radio. She wrote the lyrics to the song’s melody and later called Prince to tell him about it. Prince plays uncredited synthesizer on the track which appeared on the album The Wild Heart.

MC Hammer released the single “Pray” in 1990, the third off his album Please Hammer, Don’t Hurt ‘Em. It samples Prince’s “When Doves Cry” heavily – with permission from the man himself, which is most unusual. It soared to number 2 on the Billboard charts that year.

Chaka Khan’s 1984 single “I Feel For You” (off the album of the same name) went platinum. It’s a cover of Prince track from 1979. The song, featuring Grandmaster Melle Mel, netted Khan a Grammy award for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance in 1985.

“How Come U Don’t Call Me Anymore?” was released in 1982 as a B-side for Prince’s single “1999.” Alicia Keys recorded a cover of the song, retitled “How Come You Don’t Call Me” for her 2001 album Songs in A Minor.

Other Prince-penned songs made famous by other artists:

The Glamorous Life” by Sheila E.

Sex Shooter” by Apollonia 6

Jungle Love” by Morris Day and the Time

The Bird” by Morris Day and the Time

Round & Round” by Tevin Campbell

Sugar Walls” by Sheena Easton

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