How "Sometimes It Snows in April" Became a Memorial to Prince

218 views

Prince's second film Under the Cherry Moon may not be a classic of contemporary cinema, but its accompanying soundtrack album, 1986's Parade, is well-loved thanks to classics like the chart-topping "Kiss" and fan favorites like "Mountains" and "Anotherloverholenyohead."

But it's the album's closing track "Sometimes It Snows in April" that may be the most poignant - not just for its gentle balladry and heartfelt lyrics but for an unbelievable cosmic coincidence: Prince cut the track on April 21, 1985 - exactly 31 years before he left the world behind.

Written and performed with Wendy Melvoin and Lisa Coleman of backing band The Revolution, "Sometimes It Snows" was conceived as a eulogy for Christopher Tracy, the gigolo played by Prince in Cherry Moon. In historian Duane Tudahl's upcoming book Prince and the Parade and Sign O' The Times Era Studio Sessions: 1985 and 1986, Wendy calls it an example of her friend and collaborator's "really beautiful and really more personal" ballads he was writing at the time. "I could see in him that it allowed him to feel even bigger feelings that weren't overtly sexualized or angry or bratty."

"'Sometimes It Snows in April' was really the pinnacle of our relationship together," Lisa added. "And when we wrote that song, it was just the three of us sitting together in a room. I really loved it, and I had hoped that we would follow that trail further." (It was, in fact, the last album credited to Prince and The Revolution.)

Though never released as a single, Prince continued to play the song in concert throughout the rest of his career. Five days after his passing, R&B singer D'Angelo made a powerful appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, performing the tune alongside actress Maya Rudolph and her friend Gretchen Lieberum, who perform Prince covers together as Princess. It was a fitting tribute to a legend whose music will never die.

Prince's second film Under the Cherry Moon may not be a classic of contemporary cinema, but its accompanying soundtrack album, 1986's Parade, is well-loved thanks to classics like the chart-topping "Kiss" and fan favorites like "Mountains" and "Anotherloverholenyohead."

But it's the album's closing track "Sometimes It Snows in April" that may be the most poignant - not just for its gentle balladry and heartfelt lyrics but for an unbelievable cosmic coincidence: Prince cut the track on April 21, 1985 - exactly 31 years before he left the world behind.

Written and performed with Wendy Melvoin and Lisa Coleman of backing band The Revolution, "Sometimes It Snows" was conceived as a eulogy for Christopher Tracy, the gigolo played by Prince in Cherry Moon. In historian Duane Tudahl's upcoming book Prince and the Parade and Sign O' The Times Era Studio Sessions: 1985 and 1986, Wendy calls it an example of her friend and collaborator's "really beautiful and really more personal" ballads he was writing at the time. "I could see in him that it allowed him to feel even bigger feelings that weren't overtly sexualized or angry or bratty."

"'Sometimes It Snows in April' was really the pinnacle of our relationship together," Lisa added. "And when we wrote that song, it was just the three of us sitting together in a room. I really loved it, and I had hoped that we would follow that trail further." (It was, in fact, the last album credited to Prince and The Revolution.)

Though never released as a single, Prince continued to play the song in concert throughout the rest of his career. Five days after his passing, R&B singer D'Angelo made a powerful appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, performing the tune alongside actress Maya Rudolph and her friend Gretchen Lieberum, who perform Prince covers together as Princess. It was a fitting tribute to a legend whose music will never die.

Comments(0)

Log in to comment