319 is the twelfth track (eighth song) on Prince’s 17th album The Gold Experience, the first album to be credited to . The song was also featured in the 1995 Paul Verhoeven movie Showgirls.
Basic tracking took place on 25 October 1993 at Paisley Park Studios in Chanhassen, Minnesota (the same day as Strawberries, the day before the release of Tevin Campbell’s album I’m Ready). Horn overdubs were recorded in late October 1993, also at Paisley Park Studios (during the same set of sessions as horn overdubs on Now). The initial take of 319 was a full band recording. Prince later reworked the song by himself in the studio and used samples from the original version. The initial version remains unreleased.
The track was included as the ninth track on an album configured in 1994 (unnamed, but considered to be an early configuration of The Gold Experience). It was included as the twelfth track (seventh song) on March 1994, and May 1994, configurations of The Gold Experience, before being included as the eighth song on a later 1994 configuration. The 13 October 1994, configuration included 319 as the 15th track (ninth song), before the track Days Of Wild was removed from the album for release.
The track begins directly from the previous NPG Operator segue, which includes a staged phone call to a hotel asking for room 319. The NPG Operator segue was originally only the "NPG Operator" segment, with the phone call included in the track 319, which would then have had a track time of 3:19. it was released as such on the Pussy Control promo single.
Prince has said that the track was inspired by American actress Elizabeth Berkely, who starred in the movie Showgirls.