• Like a Prayer
Like a Prayer was the first single to be released from Madonna’s album Like a Prayer.
It was released three weeks prior to the album, and was released worldwide. While Prince did not appear on the album version of Like A Prayer which was the single’s primary track, his guitar work appeared uncredited on an extended version of the track in addition to some remixes, included on a variety of the single’s formats.
Like a Prayer (7″ Remix/Edit) (5:41)
Like a Prayer (12″ Club Version) (6:37)
Like a Prayer (12″ Extended Remix) (7:23)
Like a Prayer (Dub Beats) (4:36)
While specific recording dates for Prince‘s guitar solo contribution are not known,
his solo was recorded in mid-November, 1988, at Paisley Park Studios, Chanhassen, MN, USA.
• Love Song (codename: “Daisy Miller”)
Love Song is the third track on Madonna’s album Like a Prayer. The track was co-written, co-performed and co-produced by Prince. Initial tracking took place on 13 March 1988, at Paisley Park Studios.
The project was initially titled Daisy Miller to disguise the artists working on the track
(there was a lot of media speculation about Prince and Madonna working together and possibly being linked romantically).
Madonna and her musicians worked on the track later in 1988, and Prince added additional overdubs in mid-November 1988 at Paisley Park.
Madonna remains the most commercially successful artist Prince has ever worked with.
According to an interview Madonna gave in late 2001, “Love Song” began as a jam by Madonna at the keyboard and Prince behind the drums. “We had a lot of fun,” Madonna recalled.”We came up with the original melody line. I just ,off the top of my head, started singing lyrics into the microphone. And then he overdubbed some guitar stuff and made a loop of it and sent it to me, and then I just started adding sections to it and singing parts to it.”
“Love Song” is a slow, tense pop/funk number. The arrangement is stark, featuring little more than a metallic-sounding drum machine beat, a rhythm guitar lick, and some synth embellishments. The lyrics express uncertainty about a relationship, with Madonna requesting more honesty from her partner.Far removed from the accessible pop and dance music of the rest of Like A Prayer, “Love Song” must rate as one of the most experimental, off-the-wall tracks Prince has submitted to another artist.
• By Alien Means
By Alien Means is an unreleased track recorded at some point in 1988 at Paisley Park Studios, Chanhassen, MN, USA (the song was filed for copyright registration on 12 October 1988).
Prince submitted the track to Madonna for inclusion on her fourth album Like A Prayer
(which featured Prince on other tracks), but she turned it down, and it is unlikely that she ever recorded vocals for the track.
“By Alien Means” is an intriguing and highly ambitious song, featuring a slightly bombastic Lovesexy-era production in parts. The song alternates between two disparate themes, one segment focusing on a slow, wistful melody and the other being more of a monotonous vamp. The latter segment contains a wild blend of synth stabs, guitar and organ interjections, percussion, crowd noise, and eccentric vocals that are spoken, shouted, and sung.
The song has a serious message rooted in reality, with Prince asking young people not to commit suicide,pleading, “Don’t go out by alien means.”
• Act Of Contrition
Act Of Contrition is the eleventh and final track on Madonna’s fourth album Like A Prayer,
and three weeks before the album’s release, it was included as the b-side of Like A Prayer, the album’s first single. The track contains a guitar solo by Prince, who was not credited for the track, and was constructed mostly over a backwards sample from Like A Prayer.
While specific recording dates for Prince‘s contribution are not known, his solo was recorded in mid-November, 1988, at Paisley Park Studios, Chanhassen, MN, USA. It is likely that his solo was recorded by itself (or possibly for use on Like A Prayer), and the track was compiled later.
• Keep It Together
Keep It Together is the ninth track on Madonna’s fourth album Like A Prayer. The track contains guitar by Prince, who was not credited. Ten months after the album’s release, Keep It Together was released as the album’s fifth single, but the single’s tracks were remixed by Shep Pettibone using the master track without Prince‘s contribution.
Madonna revealed in an interview in late 2001 that Prince also played guitar on “Keep It Together,” presumably having been sent a tape of the song along with “Like A Prayer.”
“Housebangers” digresses from the dance beat of the majority of the “Cream” maxi-single tracks,
instead sporting more of a house music beat with a low,pulsing synth bass as the foundation.
The overall sound and musical style is remarkably similar to some tracks on Madonna’s 1992 album Erotica. The lyrical content is similar to that of “Do Your Dance (K.C.’s Remix)”
with Prince and Jevetta Steele providing the vocals.
• THE VAULT book by UPTOWN staff