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from the album Hitnrun Phase Two

single art for Baltimore
Song details
Performer: Prince
First Released: 9 May 2015 - Prince3EG Soundcloud stream

26 May 2015 - Baltimore single

Album(s): Hitnrun Phase Two (although none at time of release)
Writer(s): Prince
Producer(s): Prince (assumed)
Live Appearances
First and last live appearance:
Performed regularly on tour:
  • none
Performed occasionally in shows:

Baltimore is the first track on Prince’s 39th album Hitnrun Phase Two. An earlier version of the track was made available to stream on a newly-created Prince3EG Soundcloud account on 9 May 2015, however, the day before Prince’s Rally 4 Peace one-off concert in the city of Baltimore, at which the track had its live debut.

The track, with additional orchestral and horn overdubs, was released on the digital single Baltimore later in the month, in the same form as later released on Hitnrun Phase Two. The following day the Prince3EG Twitter account teased a new release, possibly titled Free Urself, with a link to the single, indicating that the two tracks may be included on the same album at a later date (Free Urself was not included on Hitnrun Phase Two, however).

The track was recorded on 30 April 2015 at Paisley Park Studios in Chanhassen, Minnesota, in response to the death of 25-year-old African-American man Freddie Gray in Baltimore, MD, USA, and the resulting riots taking place over the days prior to the song’s recording.

Prince and 3rdEyeGirl with Joshua Welton recorded a live cut of it at the Paisley Park Studios sound stage on 29 April 2015, and Prince recorded it again directly afterwards, alone in Studio A.

This version was mixed by Dylan Dreslow after Eryn Allen Kane added vocals to the track in early May.

Release plans for the song were uncertain at first. “We’re going to talk to Jay-Z and his people about streaming it on ‘Tidal',” he stated in a interview during the song’s recording.

The final stream of the song was accompanied with the following text:

BALTIMORE recorded at Paisley Park Studios in Chanhassen, Minnesota on…9kEJc.twitter. The original recording subsequently became a demo when Prince, that very same night - all alone in Studio A, played all the instruments on an entire new version of the song. The next morning Joshua Welton and Kirk Johnson transferred Prince’s tracks in2 Studio B. and mixing began. As the song neared completion at Prince’s behest Eryn Allen Kane graciously flew in on a moment’s notice and graced the track with her angelic presence.

Speaking of presence, Prince was not during Eryn’s vocal sessions. After being given the green light by Prince, via the studio intercom, Ms. Kane basically listened down 2 the track a few times and instinctively knew what was needed.

A powerhouse vocal arranger and producer in her own right - check this out: the song grew wings instantly once Her had been laid down. The only thing left 2 do now was 2 find an ace mixing engineer who has a love 4 the smooth wave of analog but would still pack the punch the performances deserve. Dylan Dreslow was the 1st and only choice.
He instantly understood the importance of the song and did an excellent job in the delivery of this "baby."

Please know that all involved in this project never take for granted the privileges we have in this country. Let’s all continue to fight the good fight and confront inhumanity on every level until the day it is no longer.

Recording Information
Recording Sessions
Date Studio Additional info
30 April 2015 Paisley Park Studios,
Chanhassen, MN, USA
Live demo and re-recording
2 May 2015 (assumed) Paisley Park Studios,
Chanhassen, MN, USA
Eryn Allen Kane vocal overdubs
May 2015 The Brewhouse Studios,
Minneapolis, MN, USA
Orchestral and horn overdubs
Recording Personnel

Single / Hitnrun Phase Two version

Streamed version

Unreleased version

Released Versions
Title Length Released Version Additional info
Baltimore 4:33 Baltimore single

Hitnrun Phase Two

Studio Version with additional overdubs
Video Versions
Title Length Released Version Additional info
Baltimore 4:34 Promotional release only Promo video See Baltimore for details
Broadcasts/streaming (only)
Title Length Released Version Additional info
Baltimore 4:34 Prince3EG Soundcloud stream Studio Studio version before additional string and horn overdubs
Baltimore 7:36 Live concert online stream Live 10 May 2015, Royal Farms Arena, Baltimore, MN, USA
Unreleased Versions
Title Version Additional Info
Baltimore Studio Prince and 3rdEyeGirl version; live demo recorded 30 April 2015
Additional Information

See also Trivia

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