I Wanna Be Your Lover

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For the song by the Italian disco band, see La Bionda.
"I Wanna Be Your Lover"
UK 7" single
Single by Prince
from the album Prince
B-side "My Love Is Forever"/"Sexy Dancer" (US)
"Just as Long as We're Together"/"Sexy Dancer" (UK)
"Why You Wanna Treat Me So Bad?" (DEU)
Released August 24, 1979
Format 7" single
12" single
Recorded Alpha Studios, Burbank, California, April–June 1979
Genre Post-disco,[1] funk
Length 7" edit: 2:57
12"/album: 5:57
Label Warner Bros.
Writer(s) Prince
Producer(s) Prince
Certification Gold (RIAA) - March 18, 1980
Prince singles chronology
"Just as Long as We're Together"
"I Wanna Be Your Lover"
"Why You Wanna Treat Me So Bad?"
Prince (UK) chronology
"I Wanna Be Your Lover"
"Sexy Dancer"

"I Wanna Be Your Lover" is a song by Prince from his second album Prince, released in 1979. It was his first successful single, gaining radio airplay and chart success: the song scored two weeks at number one on the R&B singles chart during December 1979, and peaked at number eleven on the Billboard Hot 100.[2]

In the U.S. the B-side of the track was "My Love Is Forever", from his previous album, For You. In the UK, the B-side was "Just as Long as We're Together", also from For You. This was Prince's debut single in the UK. It charted together with "Sexy Dancer" on the U.S. Hot Dance Club Play chart, where it reached number two.[3]

Musically, it is a disco-pop song sung exclusively in falsetto. Prince included a sample of this song in the opening of his 1992 song "My Name Is Prince".

Music video[edit]

There are two versions of the music video of the single. The main version has Prince in a leopard shirt and jeans singing alone in a black background with only a mic. Various shots show Prince playing the instruments by himself.

The other version which is not featured on The Hits Collection compilation shows Prince and band members at the time in a tan painted room. This video was pulled because of skimpy clothing. The video is widely sought after by collectors.[citation needed]

Track listings[edit]

7" single
  • A. "I Wanna Be Your Lover" (edit) – 2:57
  • B. "My Love Is Forever" – 4:08
7" single (UK)
  • A. "I Wanna Be Your Lover" (edit) – 2:57
  • B. "Just as Long as We're Together" (edit) – 3:25
7" single (DEU)
  • A. "I Wanna Be Your Lover" (edit) – 2:57
  • B. "Why You Wanna Treat Me So Bad?" – 3:49
12" single (UK)
  • A. "I Wanna Be Your Lover" – 5:47
  • B. "Just as Long as We're Together" – 6:24
12" promo
  • A. "I Wanna Be Your Lover" (edit) – 2:57
  • B. "I Wanna Be Your Lover" – 5:57

Cover versions[edit]

  • In 1991, rap artist M-Doc sampled this song in his single "Are U Wid It?".
  • In 1994, former Neighbours actors twins Gayle & Gillian Blakeney covered the song, which was entitled "Wanna Be Your Lover". It peaked at number 62 on the UK Singles Chart.
  • In 2009, Patrick Stump, singer of the band Fall Out Boy, did a cover of the song in a RollingStone.com exclusive video.
  • Millie Jackson also covered the track, changing the opening line to "I've got plenty of money..."
  • Haywoode, a British R&B artist, covered the song on her 1985 album "Arrival".
  • Rapper 50 Cent added his own verse to the song, dubbing the resulting song "Your Favorite".
  • In 2011, Corinne Bailey Rae released a cover of the song on her The Love E.P.
  • In 2011, Guga Neiva released a cover as lead single on debut album, 17.
  • In 2011, Max Tundra put out a version that sounds like it was recorded lower and slower and then sped up to achieve a falsetto effect on the lead vocal.
  • In 2012, the song was performed as part of a Prince medley on the reality singing contest The Voice by the judges (Christina Aguilera, Cee Lo Green, Adam Levine and Blake Shelton), with Adam Levine performing his solo part on this song.
  • Singer/Songwriter Kimbra has performed "I Wanna Be Your Lover" numerous times in her live shows, later stating in an interview that she felt the song was "incredible." A video of her performance was posted on her official YouTube channel, but was later taken down for copyright reasons, which has happened numerous times with videos featuring Prince's compositions.
  • In 2013 on the 12th Annual Honda Civic Tour, Pop Rock band Maroon 5 performed the song regularly as a part of their set.
  • Corinne Bailey Rae released a cover version of "I Wanna Be Your Lover" on her "The Love E.P" released in 2011


Chart (1979) Peak
US Billboard Hot 100 11
US Billboard Hot R&B Singles 1
US Billboard Hot Dance Club Songs 2


  1. ^ Allmusic: List of Post-Disco songs. Rovi Corporation. Accessed 06-29-2014
  2. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-2004. Record Research. p. 471. 
  3. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Hot Dance/Disco: 1974-2003. Record Research. p. 208. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
"Still" by The Commodores
Billboard's Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs number one single
December 1–8, 1979
Succeeded by
"Do You Love What You Feel" by Rufus and Chaka