Strange Relationship

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Strange Relationship

Sott.jpg
from the album
Sign O’ The Times

Sign O’ The Times Super Deluxe Edition
from the album
Sign O’ The Times Super Deluxe Edition
Piano&amicrophone1983.jpg
from the album Piano & A Microphone 1983
Song details
Performer: Prince
First Released: 30 March 1987 - Sign O’ The Times album
Album(s): Sign O’ The Times

One Nite Alone... Live!

Writer(s): Prince
Producer(s): Prince
Live Appearances
First and last live appearance:
Performed regularly on tour:
Performed occasionally in shows:

Strange Relationship is the third track on the second disc of Prince’s ninth album Sign O’ The Times.

In 2001, a 1987 live version was included as part of NPG Ahdio Show # 4, and the same version was offered as an individual download in 2005.

In 2002, a live version was also included as the sixth track on the second disc of One Nite Alone... Live!, Prince’s first live album (along with Muse 2 The Pharaoh, Mellow and The Other Side Of The Pillow from the same show).

A brief solo piano rehearsal of the track was released on the 2018 posthumous album Piano & A Microphone 1983, preceded by Mary Don’t You Weep, which also includes some lyrics from Strange Relationship.

Initial tracking is believed to have taken place on 14 March 1983 at Prince’s Kiowa Trail Home Studio in Chanhassen, Minnesota. Wendy Melvoin and Lisa Coleman reworked the track heavily in one or more sessions in mid-late June and July 1985, adding Fairlight CMI sitar and other overdubs at The Complex Studios, Los Angeles, California.

This overdubbed version was edited down in a later session and included as the seventh track on a late April 1986 configuration of Dream Factory, and as the album expanded, it was included as the sixth track on the first disc on the 3 June 1986 and 18 July 1986 configurations.

When the Revolution disbanded, Prince remixed the song at Sunset Sound in Hollywood, California, to minimize Wendy Melvoin and Lisa Coleman’s involvement. Eric Leeds recorded a saxophone overdub, but Prince removed it from the final mix, which was included as the third track on the 5 November 1986 configuration of the Camille album (to be credited to Camille).

A few weeks later, it was included as the sixth track on the second disc of the triple-album Crystal Ball on the 30 November 1986 configuration, which was eventually pared down and became Sign O’ The Times.

Probably after its release on Sign O’ The Times, Prince commissioned Shep Pettibone to remix the song, possibly around the same time he also remixed Hot Thing. The 1987 Shep Pettibone Club Mix remained unreleased at the time, but was released on Sign O’ The Times Super Deluxe Edition in 2020 as the thirteen and final track of Vault Tracks part 3, one of the discs with previously unreleased tracks. The Super Deluxe Edition set also included (as the sixth track of Vault Tracks part 1) the initial Wendy & Lisa overdubbed version, called Original Version here, although the true original version was recorded in 1983 and remains unreleased.


Recording Information
Recording Sessions
Date Studio Additional info
14 March 1983 (estimate) Kiowa Trail Home Studio,
Chanhassen, MN, USA
Basic tracking
August 1983 (estimate) Kiowa Trail Home Studio,
Chanhassen, MN, USA
Rehearsal recording
Late April / early May 1984 Flying Cloud Drive Warehouse,
Eden Prairie, MN, USA
overdubbing
Mid June 1985 The Complex Studios,
Los Angeles, CA, USA
Overdubs and reworking by Wendy Melvoin and Lisa Coleman
1 July 1985 The Complex Studios,
Los Angeles, CA, USA
Overdubs and reworking by Wendy Melvoin and Lisa Coleman
Mid March 1986 (assumed) Galpin Blvd Home Studio,
Chanhassen, MN, USA
Editing, mixing
Late October - early November 1986 Sunset Sound,
Hollywood, CA, USA
Remix minimizing Wendy & Lisa contributions & recording of later discarded saxophone overdub
mid- late 1987 (assumed) Mastermix Studio, New Jersey remix, additional production, editing; Shep Pettibone
Recording Personnel

Released versions



Unreleased original 1983 recording

  • Prince - all vocals and instruments (assumed)


Versions
Released Versions
Title Length Released Version Additional info
Strange Relationship 4:04 Sign O’ The Times Studio
Strange Relationship 4:04 Sign O’ The Times (Super) Deluxe Edition Studio Remastered in 2020
Strange Relationship 2:38 Piano & A Microphone 1983 'Rehearsal' a.k.a. Strange Relationship (Piano & A Microphone 1983 Version)
Strange Relationship (Live '87) 4:41 NPG Music Club .wma download Live 21 March 1987, First Avenue, Minneapolis, Minnesota; edited from full live version
Strange Relationship 4:24 One Nite Alone... Live EP promo Live 11 March 2002, Murat Theatre, Indianapolis, IN, USA; longer version than below; begins with spoken intro from previous song, slightly longer audience noise at end without spoken transition
Strange Relationship 4:12 One Nite Alone... Live! Live 11 March 2002, Murat Theatre, Indianapolis, IN, USA; slightly alternate edit than above
Strange Relationship (Live In Las Vegas) 3:52 Live At The Aladdin Las Vegas promo Live 15 December 2002, Aladdin Theatre for the Performing Arts, Las Vegas, NV, USA
Strange Relationship (Original Version) 6:41 Sign O’ The Times Super Deluxe Edition Studio
Strange Relationship (1987 Shep Pettibone Club Mix) 7:07 Sign O’ The Times Super Deluxe Edition Remix
Video Versions
Title Length Released Version Additional info
Strange Relationship 2:30 Lovesexy Live 1 VHS Live 9 September 1988, Westfalenhallen, Dortmund, West Germany
Strange Relationship T.B.C. Live At The Aladdin Las Vegas DVD Live 15 December 2002, Aladdin Resort & Casino, Las Vegas, NV, USA
Sampled, Referred to, Quoted in...
Title Length Released Version Additional info
Mary Don’t You Weep 4:42 Piano & A Microphone 1983 album pre-order download Rehearsal Contains lyrical interpolation of Strange Relationship
Unreleased Versions
Title Version Additional Info
Strange Relationship Studio Original 1983 recording
Strange Relationship Studio 1985 mix with saxophone by Eric Leeds (removed for release)
Strange Relationship Studio ’sitar' version, edit, as placed on Dream Factory
 
Additional Information

See also Trivia


References
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