Song of the Day #4,933: ‘When Doves Cry’ – Prince

Continuing my look at 1984, first by counting down my own top five albums of that year.

#3. Purple Rain – Prince

Only five albums reached #1 in 1984, and one of those was Michael Jackson’s Thriller, which was released the previous year but still spent the first 15 weeks of ’84 at the top of the Billboard 200. Thriller was the top-selling album of both 1983 and 1984.

Michael ushered in the year, but Prince’s Purple Rain wrapped it up, spending the final 22 weeks of 1984 at #1. Both a studio album and the soundtrack to an accompanying movie of the same title, Purple Rain is an ecstatic mashup of genres and moods. The songs cycle through hard rock, electronica, R&B and pop, sometimes within the course of a single 5-minute track.

The album produced two #1 hits in ‘When Doves Cry’ and ‘Let’s Go Crazy,’ a #2 hit in the title track, and a #8 hit in ‘I Would Die 4 U.’ All excellent songs, though my favorite track is the grandly emotional ‘The Beautiful Ones.’ I also have a soft spot for the bawdy ‘Darling Nikki,’ which allegedly inspired Tipper Gore to launch her campaign to police offensive music.

I’m not a huge Prince fan, and am unfamiliar with many of his releases, but there’s no denying the genius behind this album.

[Verse 1]
Dig, if you will, the picture
Of you and I engaged in a kiss
The sweat of your body covers me
Can you, my darling?
Can you picture this?

[Verse 2]
Dream, if you can, a courtyard
An ocean of violets in bloom
Animals strike curious poses
They feel the heat
The heat between me and you

[Chorus]
How can you just leave me standing
Alone in a world that’s so cold? (So cold)
Maybe I’m just too demanding
Maybe I’m just like my father: too bold
Maybe you’re just like my mother
She’s never satisfied (She’s never satisfied)
Why do we scream at each other?
This is what it sounds like
When doves cry

[Verse 3]
Touch, if you will, my stomach (Hmm)
Feel how it trembles inside (Mhm)
You’ve got the butterflies all tied up
Don’t make me chase you
Even doves have pride

[Chorus]
How can you just leave me standing
Alone in a world so cold? (World so cold)
Maybe I’m just too demanding
Maybe I’m just like my father: too bold
Maybe you’re just like my mother
She’s never satisfied (She’s never satisfied)
Why do we scream at each other?
This is what it sounds like
When doves cry

[Bridge]
Yeah, yeah
Doo-doo woah-oh
(Yeah, yeah)

[Chorus]
How can you just leave me standing
Alone in a world that’s so cold? (World that’s so cold)
Maybe I’m just too demanding (Maybe, maybe)
Maybe I’m just like my father: too bold (My father, you know he’s cruel)
Maybe you’re just like my mother (Maybe you’re just like my mother)
She’s never satisfied (Never, never satisfied, why scream?)
Why do we scream at each other? (Why?)
This is what it sounds like
When doves cry

[Break]
When doves cry (When doves cry, when doves cry)
When doves cry (When doves cry, they cry)
Oh, no, oh
Oh, no, yeah
Oh, oh, yeah
Oh, oh, yeah
Oh, oh, yeah
When doves cry
When doves cry (Hoo)
When doves cry (Hoo)
Baby, baby, baby, yeah

[Outro]
When doves cry (When doves cry, when doves cry)
Don’t cry
Darling, don’t cry
Don’t cry, don’t cry, don’t, don’t cry

One thought on “Song of the Day #4,933: ‘When Doves Cry’ – Prince

  1. Dana Gallup says:

    While Sign of the Times is my favorite Prince album, Purple Rain is great as well. Back in 1984, it seemed to me that Prince was the anti-Michael Jackson, so I was happy to have Purple Rain knock Thriller off the number one spot. Looking back, it’s hard to believe both of these great artists were swirling around each other at the peak of their careers in 1984 – and harder to believe that both are no longer with us.

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