Hear Prince and the Time’s 1990 Song About Donald Trump
Among Prince’s many interesting qualities was the fact that he never used his celebrity to advance his political views — whatever those might have been. He didn’t vote, as he told PBS’s Tavis Smiley in 2008, and he refused to participate in efforts even as uncontroversial as the “We Are the World” fundraiser to fight famine in Africa.
It’s unlikely, then, that he would have much to say about the 2016 election or any of the candidates in it, but back in 1989 Prince did help write a song about today’s Republican frontrunner.
BuzzFeed rediscovered “Donald Trump (Black Version),” a sultry R&B ballad Prince crafted with Morris Day and Jerome Benton of the Minneapolis funk group the Time. It appeared on the band’s 1990 album Pandemonium, but was originally intended for a shelved concept album called Corporate World.
According to Prince biographer Matt Thorne, Corporate World‘s title track, “perhaps surprisingly for a record (and a band) who have always boasted about their enjoyment of the high life, has lyrics that could be recited at an ‘Occupy Wall Street’ demo.”
“Donald Trump (Black Version)” was ostensibly intended to exist in the same vein; Thorne writes it “continues the [album’s] theme of a black re-write of Wall Street.”
The song’s narrator attempts to woo a money-hungry lover by promising her a “$100 dinner at Adriano’s” and a “brand-new coat or a brand-new hat.” The chorus goes: “Donald Trump (black version), maybe that’s what you need. A man that fulfills your every wish, your every dream. Donald Trump (black version), come on take a chance. A 1990s love affair, the real romance.”
Prince’s contribution goes uncredited on the album, but fan site Prince Vault backs up Thorne’s claim that the song was penned by the Purple One himself. Incidentally, he wrote it around the same time Trump first openly mulled a run for public office.
The Donald himself paid his respects to Prince on Twitter Friday morning, writing, “I met Prince on numerous occasions. He was an amazing talent and wonderful guy. He will be greatly missed!”
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