Best Covers of Prince Songs

Prince cosplayer
Prince cosplayer at the 2017 WonderCon at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, California. Gage Skidmore/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY-SA 2.0

Out of all the artists in popular music, few have been as generous as Prince when it comes to letting other artists cover his songs. His willingness, coupled with his sheer talent, made Prince one of the most covered artists in all of music: dozens of his songs have been covered by artists in a range of musical genres over the years.

If you're a devoted Prince fan (or fanatic) and can't get enough of his tunes, below is a list of some of the best versions of his songs recorded by other artists, each worth tracking down and giving a listen.

of 10

"Nothing Compares 2 U" - Sinead O'Connor

Technically, the original version was by a short-lived Prince side project called The Family, but it was the Purple One who wrote the music and lyrics. Sinead O'Connor's version of the beautifully heartbreaking song spawned an iconic music video and became a global hit, spending four weeks on top of the Billboard 100 in the United States alone. "Nothing Compares 2 U" can be found on her 1990 breakthrough album I Do Not Want What I Haven't Got.

of 10

"The Beautiful Ones" - Mariah Carey featuring Dru Hill

Mariah Carey and Dru Hill covered this track on Carey's 1997 album, Butterfly, and turned it into one of the best-sung Prince covers ever. Rumor has it Carey's version of the song is a commentary about her ex-husband, music mogul Tommy Mottola.

of 10

"I Feel For You" - Chaka Khan

This is one of the few Prince songs that's more synonymous with the cover artist than with the Purple One. Chaka Khan breathed new life into her career when she covered "I Feel For You" in 1984. Compared to the original, Khan's version has a heavy hip-hop/rap flavor, as mainstream culture was shifting toward that style at the time. The song was included on her album I Feel For You, which went on to sell millions of copies.

of 10

"Let's Pretend We're Married" - School of Fish

This rare cover by the obscure band School of Fish is one of the best rock covers of a Prince song. The song was never included on any of the band's albums, however. It can only be found as a B-side on the group's "3 Strange Days" single.

of 10

"Kiss" - Art of Noise featuring Tom Jones

When English synth-pop group Art of Noise remade this song in 1988, Tom Jones' vocals added a whole new attitude and made him a relevant artist again. It resulted as one of the biggest hits of Art of Noise's career. It peaked at No. 18 on the Billboard Top Dance Songs chart and at No. 5 on the UK Singles Chart.

of 10

Tie: "When Doves Cry" - Aaliyah & "When Doves Cry" - Ginuwine

This one is a tie. Aaliyah's sad, haunting version of this song is rare and impossible to find. Ginuwine's version, which appears on his 1996 album The Bachelor, is much more upbeat. It uses dove sound effects to give the song a jungle-inspired feel.

of 10

"If I Was Your Girlfriend" - TLC

The TLC version of this song, included on their 1994 album CrazySexyCool, is uncannily similar to the Prince version. So much so, in fact, that it's actually a little hard to tell which is which.

of 10

"Erotic City" - Semisonic

The vocals on Semisonic's version of this very naughty Prince classic are weak, but the lively rock instrumentation by the band matches the original version's wanton decadence. Semisonic's version of the song can only be found on a five-song maxi-single.

of 10

"Do Me Baby" - Meli'sa Morgan

"Do Me Baby" was originally released on Prince's 1981 album Controversy, but it didn't chart until R&B singer Meli'sa Morgan released a cover version as the lead single for her debut album of the same name. It reached No. 1 on the Billboard R&B Singles chart and No. 46 on the Hot 100.

of 10

"Darling Nikki" - Foo Fighters

In 2003, rock band the Foo Fighters released a cover version of "Darling Nikki" as a B-side to the single "Have It All." Despite the fact that the cover was never officially released as a single or appeared on any album, it was briefly popular on American rock stations in the mid-2000s.