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|Born||January 24, 1962|
|Origin||Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.|
|Genres||Soul, funk, new wave, pop, rock|
|Associated acts||Apollonia 6, Vanity 6, Prince|
Brenda Bennett (born January 24, 1962) is an American singer from Rhode Island and is best known as a member of the American group Vanity 6. Prince gave her a "tough-girl, cigarette-smoking" persona and enlisted her in the girlgroup that he was attempting to create in 1982. Bennett was married to Prince's lighting and set-designer / director Roy Bennett, and she had worked as Prince's "wardrobe mistress." Bennett started off as a member of a Columbia Records band called Ken Lyon and Tombstone, which toured with Mott the Hoople and Queen.
Vanity 6 group broke up a year later due to the departure of its lead singer, Vanity, after only minor success. But Bennett stuck around for its reincarnation, with a new lead singer, as Apollonia 6 in 1984. Bennett's image in both of the groups was that of the bad girl—she smoked and had the most attitude. Bennett also had a part in the film Purple Rain alongside Apollonia 6 members Susan Moonsie and the group's lead singer, Apollonia.
Bennett can be heard on lead vocals on "Bite the Beat" on the Vanity 6 album, and on "Some Kind of Lover", "A Million Miles (I Love You)," and "Blue Limousine" on the Apollonia 6 album. She can also be heard on background vocals of the song "17 Days" that Prince withdrew from their album. The song became a B-Side of his single "When Doves Cry" as well as several other Prince tracks recorded while he was on under the Warner Bros. label.
In April 2007, YouTube displayed the Apollonia film Happy B.Day Mr. Christian In this film, Brenda features her solo song "Blue Limousine" from the Apollonia 6 LP. She runs through cars and sings outside a gas station about her missed lover who treats her unkindly, and features Susan and Apollonia in black leather working on cars. Brenda released several music videos on YouTube in 2011. It took her a long time to recover from the death of her brother and mother before she was able to make any music again. In 2013, Bennett released "Guiltier" (written by Charlie Mason, Rob Curti and Måns Ek) and Jemmima, "Guiltier" is a song about how it feels like to know your loved one is doing the wrong things behind your back.
Bennett appeared on Ken Reid's TV Guidance Counselor podcast on February 24, 2016.
- Vanity 6 Lives Out Daring Fantasies On Stage (Jet Magazine, 24 January 1983)
- Henderson, Alex. "Biography: Vanity 6". Allmusic. Retrieved 1 May 2010.
- Shane, Ken. "Former Vanity 6 singer inducted into RI Music Hall of Fame". The Jamestown Press. Retrieved 23 April 2016.
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