"Holly Rock" was recorded by longtime Prince collaborator Sheila E for inclusion on the original soundtrack for the movie Krush Groove; she also performed the high-energy rap number in the film. The 1985 movie stars Run-DMC and is based on the early days of Def Jam Records.
While Prince gave Sheila E. sole writing and producer credit, he actually produced the track himself and co-wrote it with the singer.
The basic tracking for "Holly Rock" took place at Sunset Sound studios in Los Angeles on April 24, 1985 - the very same week Prince also recorded "Kiss" for his own Parade album.
Hollyrock is the name used for Hollywood in The Flintstones, which may have inspired the track.
Prince's demo was heard for the first time in 2019 when it was included on Originals, a collection of original reference tracks of songs the Purple One wrote for other artists. When listening to Prince's version you'll hear that at one point he imitates Sheila E's rapping style.
When Prince's "Holly Rock" demo was unearthed, it was found to include some uncredited male vocals. "We tried everything to find out who it is," said Michael Howe, the man tasked with archiving Prince's music vault. "Nobody has a clue who it is and there was no note of who it could be anywhere."
A video was released to accompany Prince's version of the song. The clip was created by Electric Light Studios in London.
Sheila E. sang this and "A Love Bizarre" on Saturday Night Live on November 16, 1985.