“When Doves Cry” is a song by the American musician Prince and his band The Revolution. It was released in May 1984 with “17 Days” on the B-side as the lead single from Prince’s sixth studio album “Purple Rain.” The song is considered one of Prince’s signature tracks and is known for its innovative sound and impact on the music industry.
“When Doves Cry” is characterized by its unique and groundbreaking production, featuring a minimalist arrangement with a prominent drum machine, synthesizers, and Prince’s distinctive vocals. Notably, the song does not have a bassline, which was a departure from typical pop and rock songs of the time. The lyrics of “When Doves Cry” convey themes of love, conflict, and emotional turmoil within a romantic relationship. The narrator grapples with the complexities of love and the pain of a fractured connection:
“When Doves Cry” became a massive commercial success, reaching the number one position on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in the United States. Its innovative production and Prince’s compelling vocal performance received critical acclaim and set new standards in pop music.
The music video for “When Doves Cry” features scenes from the film “Purple Rain” and showcases Prince’s dynamic stage presence and fashion sense.
Overall, “When Doves Cry” is celebrated as one of Prince’s greatest achievements and is considered an iconic song of the 1980s. Its impact on music and culture has endured, making it a timeless classic in Prince’s catalog and in the broader realm of popular music.