“My Computer” (Emancipation, 1996)
Now this is a sharp-witted, socially conscious statement with heart that would make Stevie Wonder proud. The greatness of this record, featured on his post Warner Bros., return-to-superhuman-form, triple album Emancipation, is in its subtle message commenting on the state of our war-torn society. Prince escapes to his computer to “make believe it's a better world, a better life.” No, he doesn’t have the answers and feels just as bruised and battered as the rest of us mere mortals. And that’s a good thing given just how effortless and honest “My Computer” comes off.
“Movie Star” (Crystal Ball, 1998)
Card-carrying Prince fanboy and Roots frontman Questlove swears by the mid-80’s song. D’Angelo lists it as his all-time favorite Prince bootleg, of which a decade later popped up on the artist’s gargantuan triple LP Crystal Ball. According to legend, the Minnesota music icon wrote “Movie Star,” a dangerously infectious, self-mocking, cool-man-about-town send-up, for the Time. Prince then had the correct instincts to include the fabulous, loopy cut on the shelved, mythical Dream Factory project. Bummer.