Kiss

Album: At This Moment (1988)
Charted: 5 31
Play Video

Songfacts®:

  • This Prince song was originally an American chart-topper for the Minneapolis multi-instrumentalist in 1986. Tom Jones' version was recorded with the British avant garde electronica group Art of Noise.
  • After recording a series of country-pop numbers, Tom Jones made a left-field decision to cover this song, and in doing so revived his career. He told the Observer Music Monthly December 2008 how this came about: "If I hear a song I like I'll do it in the show, so when I heard this I sang it in an R&B style. Then I was due to go on Jonathan Ross's program in 1987 to perform the ballad 'A Boy From Nowhere,' and he wanted something upbeat too. My philosophy has always been: when in doubt, do ' Great Balls of Fire.' But Jonathan asked if I had anything new. Art of Noise were watching and they asked if I'd do a version with them. When they sent me the finished version I thought: 'If this isn't a hit, I'll bloody well pack it all in.' It was a busting hit."
  • Prince and Tom Jones were both born on the same day, the 7th of June (Prince in 1958, Jones in 1940).
  • Jones met Prince and thanked him for the song, but didn't ask what his thought of his version, as he wasn't sure he would like the answer. "I saw a movie once that Bette Midler did called The Rose," Jones said in his Songfacts interview. "She goes to see Harry Dean Stanton, a country singer, because she'd recorded one of his songs. She says she's a big fan of his, and just before she walks out the door he says, 'Could I say one thing to you? Don't you ever record one of my songs again.'

    That hit home. I thought, s--t, I'm never going to ask a songwriter what he or she thinks of my version. I'll leave that to them. That always sticks in my mind. So I just thanked him for writing it."

Comments: 4

  • AnonymousIf was funny to me. I laughed until I cried when I first heard it. Like Tom but this was a disgrace to the song
  • Juli from Ca UsaJohnny in Clayton GA- The difference between how you see this video & how women see it is like night & day. Whatever their age, from 20's-90"s, women find Tom Jones sexy. Why you ask? It's his confidence mixed with a touch of humor. Plus, even though you may not think so, Tom is drop dead gorgeous! Then add in the fact that he's been married to one woman for 52 years? All that adds up to what women see as a VERY sexy man! I hope you learned something new!
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn January 2nd 1989, Tom Jones performed "Kiss" on the NBC-TV program 'Late Night with David Letterman'...
    At the time his covered version was at #38 on Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart; six days later on January 8th it would peak at #31 {for 2 weeks} and it stayed on the chart for 11 weeks...
    It had been twelve years since he had a record on the Top 100, in fact it was exactly 12 years earlier on January 2nd, 1977 that his "Say You'll Stay Until Tomorrow" entered the chart at position #90.
  • Johnny from Claxton, GaThe worst cover of a song ever... Tom Jones' version was embarrassing.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Alan Merrill of The Arrows

Alan Merrill of The ArrowsSongwriter Interviews

In her days with The Runaways, Joan Jett saw The Arrows perform "I Love Rock And Roll," which Alan Merrill co-wrote - that story and much more from this glam rock pioneer.

Steve Cropper (Booker T & the MG's, Blues Brothers)

Steve Cropper (Booker T & the MG's, Blues Brothers)Songwriter Interviews

Steve Cropper on the making of "In the Midnight Hour," the chicken-wire scene in The Blues Brothers, and his 2021 album, Fire It Up.

Philip Cody

Philip CodySongwriter Interviews

A talented lyricist, Philip helped revive Neil Sedaka's career with the words to "Laughter In The Rain" and "Bad Blood."

"Stairway To Heaven" Lawsuit: A Timeline

"Stairway To Heaven" Lawsuit: A TimelineSong Writing

Untangling the events that led to the "Stairway To Heaven" lawsuit.

Songs About Movies

Songs About MoviesSong Writing

Iron Maiden, Adele, Toto, Eminem and Earth, Wind & Fire are just some of the artists with songs directly inspired by movies - and not always good ones.

Rob Thomas of Matchbox Twenty

Rob Thomas of Matchbox TwentySongwriter Interviews

Rob Thomas on his Social Distance Sessions, co-starring with a camel, and his friendship with Carlos Santana.