Hello, welcome 2 the Dawn. U've just accessed the definitive Prince discography. There r over 500 experiences 2 choose from.
What's this website?
This page aims to become a comprehensive Prince discography, in both chronological and alphabetical order.
The chronological list is as accurate as possible given the available data.
The alphabetical list details every version of each song.
Those are, however, mainly lists of songs: PrinceVault will provide more detailed informations about the songs themselves (recording dates, writing and musicians' credits, formats released, etc.).
This is a work in progress!!!
The first draft of the chronological list is completed: it took me 7 years and 5 months (September 2009-February 2017) to get there.
Proofreading of the chronological list is in progress and the alphabetical list is being completed concurrently.
Basically, that's all you need to know in order to enjoy this website. Now, if you like geeky, long and complex technical informations, you can read what follows ^^
Note that you can help me make this website a more accurate and comprehensive ressource. If you want to know how, please read what's below (the "how to help/contribute" paragraph in particular).
Last update: 02/20/2017: Proofreading for April-June 1986. Corresponding work on the alphabetical list.
What's included in this discography?
This discography aims to feature every version of every song ever willingly made available to the public by Prince, or any other legal owners of the songs (such as Pépé Willie for the 94 East material). When material was legally released by its copyright owner but without Prince's consent, it is indicated.
I've also included "semi-official" material, i.e. songs recorded by Prince with other artists that were streamed online by said artists (even when they didn't get Prince's permission to do so). Same goes with posthumous videos streamed by the authors of said videos, as long as they were filmed with Prince's consent in the first place: even though the authors of the videos do not hold the copyright for the music and Prince's image, they hold the copyright for the film.
The list includes both physical and digital, audio and video formats for either released, promotional, aired, broadcast and streamed material.
The list also features studio recordings as well as live recordings.
The list even features internet snippets as well as the numerous snippets of live songs sent to TV channels while promoting a tour (but, as there exists no definitive list of those, it's unfortunately likely that I've missed a lot of them).
Princevault being the other most comprehensive resource when it comes to Prince's catalogue, I've mentioned every occurence when I've dug out something they've missed or when I have solid evidence of an information that seems to contradict theirs: this is for the sake of clarity and to avoid readers being confused by occasional differences between the data collected on both websites.
What's NOT there and why?
- Rule #1: No bootlegged or unofficially circulating material will be included, nor will songs that were broadcast or put online without Prince's or any other legal owner or creative participant's consent.
- Rule #2: This discography aims to record all the music that was made available, not the objects. Therefore, a release that contains no new music (such as a single or a best of with only previously released material on it) won't be featured here. So don't be shocked if such or such single isn't here: it's because all the music on it had already been made available at an earlier date.
-Rule #3: I've excluded remixes of songs featuring Prince only as a musician if Prince's parts were removed from said remixes (I've kept remixes of original Prince songs given to other artists even when said remixes don't contain any part from Prince's original recording, though).
- Rule #4: TV shows that featured lip-synched performances are not included since they are similar to the studio versions, unless the prerecorded song is itself a different, previously unreleased version, as it sometimes happened in the 90's, or unless the vocals were live over a prerecorded instrumental track.
- Rule #5: I've excluded songs that have Prince credited as an "executive producer" if they don't have any direct creative input by Prince (Prince making a phonecall to book a studio or negociating a contract with Warner Bros for a Paisley Park artist doesn't make a song eligible for a Prince discography).
- Rule #6: As I said, promo releases are included, but I didn't include cancelled projects of which a few copies have survived, such as the 1987 Black Album or Milk & Honey, since such copies were never meant to circulate in the first place. The few in-house samplers that are circulating among collectors aren't featured either, for the same reason.
- Rule #7: Of course, this list doesn't include cover versions of Prince songs, nor songs sampling Prince. This is why Eric Leeds' Aguadilla isn't included: though Prince was credited as co-writer, it was actually a reworking of the song Desire, with no direct input from Prince.
- Rule #8: I've only included songs that were featured in movies when it was an original use of previously unreleased music, the only exceptions being Purple Rain, Under The Cherry Moon and Graffiti Bridge, since Prince was behind those films' editing. Films (or TV programs) that used previously released Prince songs as "stock music" (such as Beverly Hills Cop using Nasty Girl or Striptease using If I Was Your Girlfriend) are not included. For that reason, I've also excluded all the songs used in Girl 6 except for the extended version of Girl 6 in the end credits.
WHEN is a song featured in the chronological list?
- Rule #1: Songs and albums that were first aired/broadcast/streamed then, later, physically/digitally released are featured at the broadcast/streaming date since it was the first time the material was made available to the public. So don't panic if you see a video concert or a song featured before its release date: it's likely the date of its first broadcast/streaming. When an aired/broadcast/streamed song was released at a later date, I've mentioned it, though.
- Rule #2: Songs that have been released on singles (or other formats) before the album they belong to was released are featured at their original release date. So don't panic if a song is missing from an album's tracklist: it's that it's featured on the date of its original release (or airing/broadcast/streaming) earlier on the list.
- Rule #3: Many singles have had various different releases that featured different remixes. Until I know of specifically different release dates for them, they'll be reunited as a single release to avoid confusion (the list is as complex as it is without adding 3 or 4 different variant singles of the same song if they were released on the same day). Promos are listed separately in every case, though.
Your discography is cool, but HOW on Earth do I find my way in the middle of all these rerecordings and alternate versions?
Good question! It actually took me a while to sort it out myself, but here are the basic guidelines for the chronological list:
- Rule #1: I've tried to keep the genuine name of each song as it was credited when released the first time, which is why I didn't add "extended version" or "live" or "edit" to the titles of the songs that were released with no such mention. That's also why songs that have seen their title changed when new or live versions were later released are credited as such (therefore, if Why You Wanna Treat Me So Bad or The Cross or Hit U In The Socket were credited as Y U Wanna Treat Me So Bad or Christ or In The Socket, that's how they'll be featured here. Now, a 2009 broadcast of I Feel For You with no written credits won't be written Eye Feel 4 U: with no official data available, I'll stick to the original title).
Now I understand that this discography would be nothing but a complete mess if no explanations at all were added to the nature of the various versions of the songs, so I've added such information and I did it (this way).
- Rule #2: We need, some might say, a point of reference for each song. Therefore, an album version, when it exists is ALWAYS considered the "definitive" version of a song here, meaning that it won't be credited as "alternate mix", "rerecording" or "live". When a non-album track has several versions of it available (or when a song is featured on several albums), the first released version ALWAYS gets to be considered the "definitive" one, regardless of the fact that it might be a snippet/edit/remix of a later version. If several versions were released on the same day, well... then we'll use our brains and everything should be fine.
- Rule #3: Considering rule #2, we have the following categories of songs:
1) The album or "definitive" non-album song: no additional mention unless it's an album version that was released before the album it belongs to, in which case we'll have: (included in the [title of the album] album on [date]). To make non-album songs and alternate versions easier to track down, I'm also using this method to signal "best of" rereleases of a non-album song at a later date.
2) An alternate mix of the album/"definitive" version. This includes remixes, edits, extended versions, snippets and mono versions altogether: (alternate mix of the [title of album] album version/[title of the non-album song]). I try not to drown into too many details in order to keep it as simple as possible, but for the sake of legibility I'll give more details when necessary (edit, mono version, snippet, alternate title, etc.)
3) A complete studio rerecording of the original album/"definitive" version: (rerecording of the [title of album] album version/[title of the non-album song]). Some songs have been rerecorded several times, so the prime reference will always be the album/"definitive" version. Therefore, as long as you just see (rerecording of the [title of album] album version/[title of the non-album song]), it means it's a brand new recording independently of any other rerecording. Rehearsal versions of songs are considered studio recordings/rerecordings without any specific, additional mention.
4) An edit or an alternate mix of a rerecording (yeah, it's happened a few times!): (edit/alternate mix of the [title of album] rerecording/[title of the rerecording])
5) A live recording of a song: (live)
6) An edit or an alternate mix of a live recording (yeah, it's happened, too!): (edit of/alternate mix of the [title of album] album version/[title of the non-album song]). Note that unless you see such a notice, a live song is, by essence, a rerecording, regardless of how many other live versions of the same song have been released earlier or since.
Keep in mind that there's been so many alternate versions and rerecordings of so many songs that it can be really tricky at times: you will find numerous exemples of a "rerecording" or an "alternate mix" being released before (or many years after) the album version. I considered making the first released version of every song the reference track, but I realized that it would make things even more confusing, so I decided to stick to that system despite its (fewer) absurdities.
Also, if there's an apparent conflict, don't believe the actual title of the song, believe ME instead: in some occurences, you will see that a song called Album Version is actually an (alternate mix) (in a similat fashion, a Long Version can also be an edit)... Yeah, welcome to the Dawn: you've just accessed the magic of the Maxi-single Experience ^^
- Rule #4: If a song was released under a title of its own while it's actually an alternate mix or a rerecording of another released song, it will be specified this way: (alternate mix/rerecording of + also known as [title of song]). On the other hand, if two different songs share the exact same title (Girl comes to mind) it will be specified as well (different song than...). Some remixes, edits and stuff may have been released under various nicknames (a single mix can be credited "extended remix" here, "radio remix" there and "album edit" on yet another release), in which case I'll use the first chronological nickname I know of (so don't get too confused with the remixes of Gett Off: Prince was a real bitch on this one, and even though all of them are listed here, they might not fit with the titles you have written on your single's cover. Remember the magic of the Maxi-single Experience? Well, you just got deeper into it!)
- Rule #5: When a segue was released under a name other than Segue, I've specified that it's a (segue) in order to avoid it being confused with a song. Prince copyrighted his various films' incidental music as [Name of the film] Cues at ASCAP, so I've kept this "title" for all the films' incidental music tracks that aren't credited in the film's end credits. Even though they weren't credited at all, I've also used the title Segue for some of the actual, untitled segues on video albums, NPG Ahdio shows, etc.
- Rule #6: I didn't go into detailed writing credits on the chronological list, but I did on the alphabetical list, and of course I couldn't specify who arranged and/or played on each song, so if a song is included with no further notice, it means that Prince was involved as a composer AND as an arranger AND as a musician. Now, I wouldn't want you to think that Prince composed Creep, or that he played on Baby Go-Go, so if a song features Prince as a composer only, as an arranger only, or as a musician only (or in the case of Jill Jones' With You, as an engineer only), it will be (specified).
- Rule #7: Another thing while we're at it: the length of a song is often a good way to differenciate it from its counterparts (sometimes an edit is a three seconds edit, no joke!), and some of you will probably claim that the length of such or such song as written here isn't absolutely accurate. Please keep in mind that there's no definitive length for a song: depending if you read it on the album's cover, on your mp3 player, on Wikipedia or on Princevault.com, you will notice a few seconds' difference on the length that's attributed to such or such song. There's a reason for it: you will notice that even your CD's cover and the actual CD track in your player may give you different numbers! It indeed depends on the format (length is definitive on CD and mp3 but both may differ even for the same song, and there's no absolute length when you're talking about vinyls or cassettes, when you can miss a few seconds depending on the subtelty of a fade, and also what do you do when the CD track says 3:36 but these 3;36 actually contain 3 seconds of silence at the end of the track? Etc.). In most cases I've gone with the length given by Princevault when available. This list is just too much hard work without me bothering with the absolute length's accuracy of each and every one of the 1000+ tracks listed here.
- Rule #8: You have a headache and you're totally confused after reading all this? Well, SO DO I AND SO AM I!!! But fear not, for it'll never be as difficult for you to use this discography as it was for me to make it. So just go roaming on the site and enjoy it, you'll actually find it more practical to use than it seems when you read these long explainations! So just go and have fun, while I keep scratching my head wondering if I didn't forget or misplace anything ;-)
How can you help/contribute?
There MUST be mistakes and/or ommissions, either with song names, release dates or God knows what else: with such an amount of data to collect and order, it's just impossible for me not to have missed, misplaced or mispelled a few things! Therefore, if you notice any mistake or any ommission, whatever it is, please send an email to lotus[dot]flow3r[at]ymail[dot]com or contact me thru Prince.org if you are a member (my orgname is "databank"). Any help to make this site as comprehensive and accurate as possible is much welcome! If you choose to send an email, please clearly specify that it's about Prince in the mail's title, or it may end-up unread and in the trashcan, confused with a spam (I get a lot of spam on this particular email address ^^).
In some cases I am not 100% certain about something or some data is missing, in which case (my questions are added to the entry as NOTES). If you have an answer for me for any of those, please let me know!
My main problem is with exact release dates:
Release dates are mentionned between brackets after the title of every release, so when the info is (??/??) or (month/??) it means that I don't have either the day and month, or just the exact day, of release. In these cases, where the release is on this discography is pure speculation. I've searched the internet as much as possible but some data just seems to be impossible to find, but still, it HAS to be available somewhere! Any contributions to that would be welcome, as I would like this discography to be as chronologically factual as possible.
There are also some cases when it's likely that I'm not aware of separate releases for a 7'' single and its associated 12'' maxi-single (or different release dates for different versions of a CD single or a music video). For exemple, many 80's 12'' were released a few weeks or months after the 7'', but I only have this info for some Prince releases and nothing is said anywhere about his other singles, or about related artists singles, of which release dates are less documented. Now why would it be that Prince's 12''s were often released after the 7''s, but that The Time or Sheila E. would always have their 7'' and 12'' released on the same day?! Therefore, it's possible that I list several maxis much earlier than their actual release dates, which might even mean that some album songs are said to have been released before the album when they actually weren't. Any help about this is super welcome.
I have a similar problem with music videos containing alternate mixes: music videos weren't always released on the same day the corresponding singles were, but there is virtually no data available anywhere about this, so usually promo videos are listed at the same date as the single because I have no way to know.
Finally, there are sometimes contradictions between sources when it comes to release dates, so I'll try to make the best out of those and come-up with the most logical release date whenever possible.
I own a copy of each and every song on this discography, except for the songs that are listed here. If you can provide me with a digital copy of one or a few of these songs (or any other song that might be missing from this list, meaning that I'm not aware of its existence), or any information about the missing/wrong release dates, or help me correct any other mistake or omission, or if you can solve any of the questions I ask alongside some entries, I'll be happy to send you as many songs as you want in return.
Thankyous, disclaimers and other funky things:
This list is the result of my own research and music collection, but gaps have been filled over the years by many people. Even though I never interacted with most of them personally, my main thanks goes to Uptown Magazine, Per Nielsen, Borisfishpaw, Scififilmnerd and Princevault.com: their amazing work almost always allowed me to collect the data that I hadn't found by myself, and each and every Prince collector owes these people a lot!!!
For filling smaller, but nonetheless important gaps, I also want to thank 3rdeyedude, Airth, Andrewm7, Aristotle, Bart Van Hemelen, Bhanlarouge, BigChick, Billymeade, Chopingard, Darkroman, Deepwater, DannyD5050, DJdaffy1227, DJ Richie P, Errant, Eyewishuheaven, Fms, Frédéric Babayan, Jamiestarr1uk, Langebleu, Luvsexy4all, Marvinlovell, Motherfunka, Mplsmike, Nothinbutjoy, Olivier Bruchez, Pascal Comet, Revolution81, RodeoSchro, Roverlo, SchlomoDaHomo, Scratchtasia, Squirrelmeat, TheDigitalGardener, Timmie, Ufoclub, Unique, Virgile LeFaou, Xenophobia2002 and Xibalba. And when it comes to a few things, Wikipedia and Discogs.com remain vital tools in my research. I also owe many other contributors I forgot the names of, on the internet in general and on the Prince.org and Housequake.com forums in particular. Their names got lost in the battlefield but I thank them all, and I ask them to forgive me for not naming them: it's not on purpose.
As for who I am... Well... I've been a Prince fan since 1989, and that's all you really need to know ^^
Some of you might also wonder why on Earth would anyone spend so much of his free time doing this?! To give you an idea of the stubborness it requires, compiling and ordering the data for a full year's releases takes between 12 and 24 hours of work (not to mention all the data that I had already collected before, over the years). Therefore, with 39 years to cover so far, the whole thing will have taken me a good 3 months of my life if you count 8 hours = a day of work. And you can probably add just as much time for the time it'll take me completing the alphabetical list next. God I wish I was paid to do this!!! But I ain't: I do it all for free, so if you wanna thank me, don't send money: help me correct the mistakes, help me fill the gaps, and send me mp3 copies of the songs that you have and I don't!!! Completing both this website and my collection will be a sufficient reward!
Coming back to the "why" question, well... To make a long story short, I've always dreamed to find such a discography but I've never found it anywhere. Some sites and books are quite comprehensive but the songs are sorted by categories and there's always something missing. Some alphabetical lists that I've seen are quite impressive as well, but they're not comprehensive and, being alphabetical, they don't make much sense from a purely "historical" perspective. So, basically, I've never found a chronological nor an alphabetical list of EVERYTHING (audio and video, Prince and related artists, digital and physical, releases and promos, broadcasts and streamings...). So, well... somebody had to do it and that somebody would be me. I'm sure many people can use this discography to make their hobby an easier thing and discover many songs or alternate versions that they weren't aware of! This website will be my small but necessary contribution to the world in general and the Prince fandom in particular.
Prince is important enough an artist to deserve to have his work as documented as possible, and seeing all these songs allows one to realize how impressive his production is and, as I've already said, seeing them in the chronological order they've been made available allows one to understand it from a historical perspective. It also allows both old and newer fans to remember or understand the adventure that it's been for many of us to get each and every new song month after month, year after year. Yeah: I got kinda nostalgic when I started working on the early 90's, because I could remember how I felt putting my hands on each and every new release, back then when I had to roam in record stores for hours looking for records and ask the sellers and other fans I met if anything new had been released lately (instead of roaming online for hours looking for both information and mp3 files as I do now). Now we get everything quite easily with the internet, but at the time, every new discovery was like a rare gem for us fans, and believe me it was just SO HARD, if not impossible to put one's hands on quite a lot of out of print and confidentially released material. Then, suddenly, most of these rare gems surfaced online in the early 2000's: this was the begining of an orgasmic era for us fans because almost everything was at long last available, but it became somewhat less adventurous! As some have already said, the music we listen to is the soundtrack of our lives, so if you're a Prince fan, this site is kind of a reminder of your own life's soundtrack...
Of course, this site is NOT affiliated with Prince, Paisley Park Enterprises and NPG Records. Neither is it affiliated with any other Prince fansite or organization past and present, including the ones mentioned above.
And I've said it all! So until the Prince estate actually delivers "more than 500 experiences to chose from" on a website of his, please enjoy your experience revisiting his 1000+ catalogue of past experiences ;-)