Like A Prayer

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Like A Prayer


from the album Like A Prayer

single art for Like A Prayer
Song details
Performer: Madonna
First Released: 27 February 1989 - Like A Prayer single
Album(s): Like A Prayer
Writer(s): Madonna and Patrick Leonard
Producer(s): Madonna and Patrick Leonard
Live Appearances
First and last live appearance:
  • This track is not believed to have been performed live by Prince
Performed regularly on tour:
  • none
Performed occasionally in shows:
  • none

Like A Prayer is the first track on Madonna’s fourth album Like A Prayer. It was long thought that the album version contained no Prince input, and only some of the remixes contain Prince’s guitar playing, however in a 2014 interview Patrick Leonard, the song’s producer revealed it’s actually Prince on guitar at the very beginning of the song before the door slams.

The 12-inch containing the versions with a bit more of Prince’s uncredited guitar input were released three weeks prior to the album’s release on Like A Prayer, the album’s first single. The 'Dub Beats' version, remixed by Bill Bottrell, also contains a sample of the studio version of Bob George, five years before its official release.

Furthermore a back masked version of the guitar solo was used as a basis to Act Of Contrition, the eleventh and final track on the Like A Prayer, album, and also released as the b-side of the Like A Prayer, single, three weeks before the album’s release. On Act Of Contrition the credit ‘The Powers That Be’, could be read as to allude to Prince.

In October 2023 Madonna embarked on The Celebration Tour. It was her first tour without a live band. Instead her masters were used to create the music for the show. During the closing part of the show segment called 'Uptown' Like A Prayer was performed. During the performance a dancer playing a cloud guitar and wearing a chain hat 'performs' the guitar solo, more or less confirming that the solo was in fact played by Prince. A snippet of Let's Go Crazy was also used as part of the performance.

Prince’s contribution was recorded in mid-November 1988, at Paisley Park Studios in Chanhassen, Minnesota. It is likely that his solo was recorded by itself (or possibly for use on Like A Prayer), and the track was compiled later.


Recording Information
Recording Sessions
Date Studio Additional info
Late September 1988 Johnny Yuma Studios,
Burbank, CA, USA
Tracking (Madonna demo; no Prince input)
Mid-November 1988 Paisley Park Studios,
Chanhassen, MN, USA
Guitar solo recording by Prince
Recording Personnel
  • Madonna - lead vocals, background vocals, additional synthesizer
  • Prince - guitar solo (uncredited)
  • Jonathan Moffett - drums
  • Guy Pratt - bass guitar (on the album version)
  • Randy Jackson - bass guitar (on the 7" version)
  • The Andrea Crouch Choir - background vocals
  • Bruce Gaitsch - guitar
  • Chester Kamen - guitar (credited for whole album, specific involvement uncertain)
  • Dann Huff - guitar (credited for whole album, specific involvement uncertain)
  • David Williams - guitar (credited for whole album, specific involvement uncertain)
  • Bruce Gaitsch - acoustic guitar (credited for whole album, specific involvement uncertain)
  • Donna DeLory - background vocals (credited for whole album, specific involvement uncertain)
  • Niki Haris - background vocals (credited for whole album, specific involvement uncertain)
  • Geary Lanier - clavinet (credited for whole album, specific involvement uncertain)
  • Paulinho Da Costa - percussion (credited for whole album, specific involvement uncertain)
  • Patrick Leonard - acoustic piano, B3 organ, clavinet, synthesizer (credited for whole album, specific involvement uncertain)

Versions
Released Versions

Information is given for Prince-related versions only

Title Length Released Version Additional info
Like A Prayer 5:42 Like A Prayer album
Like A Prayer (7" Version) 5:19 Like A Prayer single Edit Mix by Shep Pettibone, engineered by Michael Hutchinson
Like A Prayer (7" Remix/Edit) 5:41 Like A Prayer single Remix edit Remix by Bill Bottrell
Like A Prayer (7" Remix/Edit) 5:42 Finally Enough Love

Finally Enough Love: 50 Number Ones

Remix edit Remix by Bill Bottrell, remastered in 2022
Like A Prayer (12" Extended Remix) 7:23 Like A Prayer single Remix Additional production and remix by Shep Pettibone, remix engineering by Michael Hutchinson
Like A Prayer (12" Club Version) 6:37 Like A Prayer single Remix Additional production and remix by Bill Bottrell, additional engineering by Robert Salcedo
Like A Prayer (Dub Beats) 4:36 Like A Prayer promo single and digital 2021 re-release Remix Remix by Bill Bottrell. This remix contains a sample of Bob George from the canceled “The Black Album”.


Sampled, Referred to, Quoted in...
Title Length Released Version Additional info
Act Of Contrition 2:19 Like A Prayer

Like A Prayer single

Studio
 
Additional Information

See also Trivia


References
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