If I Was Your Girlfriend

Album: Sign O' the Times (1987)
Charted: 20 67

Songfacts®:

  • This entrancingly odd song was part of an aborted triple album for which Prince had adopted a female persona, Camille, an alter ego whose identity Prince assumed by disguising his vocals in a pitched-up and androgynous style. Three of its tracks eventually made it onto Sign o' the Times: "If I Was Your Girlfriend," "Housequake" and "Strange Relationship."
  • In this song, Prince asks his girl what their relationship would be like if he was her girlfriend rather than her boyfriend. In a homosocial relationship, they could pick out clothes, wash each other's hair, cry together, and talk about their feelings. They could do other things as well, opening the question of why she needs a man anyway.
  • Prince's engineer Susan Rogers told Uncut that this song was one of those rare times when Prince asked her what she thought. She added: "I said I had never heard a man say that before, and women want to hear it."
  • Beyoncé brought this song to the fore in 2002 on her Jay-Z collaboration "'03 Bonnie And Clyde," where she sings a few lines of the song. Prince got a writing credit on the track.

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