Prince was an artist as mercurial and morphing as your favourite superhero. The singer was a deft hand at pretty much any musical genre you handed him and his cover of The Rolling Stones’ ‘Honky Tonk Woman’ is proof of that.
The Purple One took on the 1969 track as part of a recording session in 1993 for his unreleased symbol album. The unreleased album is a holy grail for some Prince fans, recorded as a single session in 1993 the album is a collector’s dream, full of unheard songs and one never-before-heard cover.
The album’s recording was filmed, and a vague storyline was incorporated, resulting in the home video The Undertaker, released on VHS and Laser Disc in 1995. We’re bringing you a shining example of one of those covers.
The cover in question is that of The Rolling Stones’ 1969 hit ‘Honky Tonk Woman’. Written in the late sixties with Jagger and Richards the track is a jumping and jiving reminder of the Stones’ inherent groove. It’s a groove that one man fills with aplomb, Prince’s first-ever recorded cover song is a triumph.
The recording features a line-up of only Prince on vocals and guitar, Michael B. on drums and Sonny T. on bass guitar. Together they create a contender for one of the best Rolling Stones covers ever, and trust us, there’s been quite a few.
With this cover, Prince shows off his incredible talent by toeing the very fine line on how best to perform a cover. That includes not only adding your own flair. which for Prince, who is about 98% flair, that was no problem and ensuring you pay homage to the song, which with his guitar licks he does in abundance.
It’s a wonderfully cultured and textured cover and is the perfect way to start your weekend. Listen below to Prince’s 1993 of The Rolling Stones’ ‘Honky Tonk Woman.’