Prince’s Own ‘Nothing Compares 2 U” Finally Sees the Light of Day


Prince NC2U single art
© The Prince Estate. Photographer: Nancy Bundt

by David Chiu
(Photos: © The Prince Estate. Photographer: Nancy Bundt)

On the eve of the two-year anniversary of Prince’s death, his estate has finally released the original studio version of one of his signature songs “Nothing Compares 2 U.” According to a press release, Prince’s own version of the track was recorded in 1984, six years before Sinead O’Connor’s iconic interpretation went to Number One on the Billboard charts; subsequently Prince had also performed the song live at his shows. Prince’s version is a cross between rock and soul with an anthemic feel, and even features saxophone. Aside from Prince, the other players on the song include saxophonist Eric Leeds and backing singers Susannah Melvoin and Paul Peterson.

The estate’s official archivist Michael Howe said in a press statement announcing the release: “I spotted the 2″ multitrack reel in the Vault some weeks back while doing a 1984-era inventory. After retrieving my jaw from the floor, we took the reel upstairs, analyzed it, put it up on the Studer 24 track machine, and digitized it to 24/192. Even our ‘faders up’ rough mix was compelling enough to indicate that this was something very special indeed.”

The release of Prince’s “Nothing Compares 2 U” coincides with the launch of a new interactive website for the fan, called Prince2Me (, as well as a new annotated Prince discography website (

You can check out “Nothing Compares 2 U” below:


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