Hello was released as the b-side of Pop Life, the third single (second in North America) from Prince's seventh album Around The World In A Day, the second album to be credited to Prince and the Revolution. Concurrently, it was included as the b-side of the second single in Europe, Raspberry Beret. In 1993, the song was included as the opening track on The B-Sides compilation (included as the third and final disc on The Hits / The B-Sides).
Initial tracking took place on 24 May 1985 at Sunset Sound, Hollywood, CA, USA (the same day the Paisley Park single was released in Europe).
Hello was written in response to criticism received when Prince declined to participate in the recording of We Are The World, a multi-artist recording organized to aid famine in Africa; the lyrics make mention of his contribution of the song 4 The Tears In Your Eyes to the album We Are The World instead.