Remembering the debut of Prince’s only Christmas song, the painfully beautiful ‘Another Lonely Christmas’
We’re dipping into the Far Out Magazine vault to bring you a very special Christmas song from a very special artist as we remember the debut of Prince’s ‘Another Lonely Christmas’ in 1984.
Prince, the notorious artist affectionately known as ‘The Purple One’, is not necessarily a name synonymous with Christmas. There are no particular festive bangers in his repertoire—but the artist did release one Christmas song in his time, the painfully beautiful ‘Another Lonely Christmas’.
When the mercurial artist took to the stage at the Civic Center in St Paul, Minneapolis, on December 26, 1984, like Jolly Saint Nick he had a few gifts in his sack. Prince approached the mic and said: “This is a new song. We’ve never played it before, but… from us to you.” And so would begin one of the most tearful Christmas songs you’re ever likely to hear.
The painfully lonely song begins with the howling sadness of Prince’s opening lines: “Last night / I spent another lonely Christmas / Darling, darling / You should have been there…” The singer is determined to sever every heartstring as he continues to list the finer moments of the lost relationship. This continues until the singer finally reveals that his love is dead.
The six-minute track is a testament to Prince’s uncanny writing ability. Able to create a world that feels idyllic to be then ripped apart by his incisive pen—add to that his masterful work on the guitar and you’d expect this to be up there in the high echelons of his bountiful setlist.
The track would eventually make it’s way on to the B-side of ‘I Would Die 4 U’ but wouldn’t become the hit one might expect. Perhaps it’s that a heartbreaking tale of lost love, gut-wrenching grief and death is a little too morbid for a midwinter bop. But, we’d rather listen to Prince’s ‘Another Lonely Christmas’ over Mariah Carey any day of the week.
Listen below to Prince debuting his one and only Christmas song ‘Another Lonely Christmas’: