Do Yourself A Favor

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Do Yourself A Favor (a.k.a. If You See Me)

1999 Deluxe.jpg
from the album 1999 Super Deluxe Edition
Symbolicbeginning album.jpg
from the album Symbolic Beginning
Thecookhousefive album.jpg
from the album The Cookhouse FiveIfyouseeme single.jpg
single art for If You See Me
Song details
Performer: Prince / 94 East
First Released: 16 May 1995 - Symbolic Beginning collection (If You see Me)
Album(s): Symbolic Beginning (If You see Me)

The Early Years (If You see Me)
One Man Jam (If You see Me)
94 East Featuring Prince (If You see Me)
The Cookhouse Five (If You see Me)
1999 Super Deluxe Edition (Do Yourself A Favor)

Writer(s): Pepé Willie (sometimes as Pepé Miller)

(credited to Pepé Willie and Jesse Johnson on Shockadelica and 1999 Super Deluxe Edition)

Producer(s): Pepé Willie and Tony Silvester (94 East versions)

Prince (1999 Super Deluxe Edition version)

Live Appearances
First and last live appearance:
  • This track is not believed to have been performed live by Prince.
Performed regularly on tour:
  • none
Performed occasionally in shows:
  • none

Do Yourself A Favor (a.k.a. If You See Me) was first released without Prince input by Jesse Johnson (on Shockadelica in 1986), but the first release containing input by Prince, recorded much earlier as If You See Me, was included in two versions (instrumental and vocal) on 94 East’ second collection of studio recordings Symbolic Beginning, featuring Prince on guitar. Prince’s 1982 version of Do Yourself A Favor was released in 2019 as the eighth track on the Vault Tracks part 2 disc of a Super Deluxe Edition edition of the 1999 album.

94 East’s vocal and instrumental versions were included on various reissues of Symbolic Beginning (The Early Years, in 2000 as One Man Jam). The vocal version was also included as the seventh track on 94 East Featuring Prince released in 2020. In 2011, a remixed version by Matt "Dr." Fink was included as the second track on the digital collection The Cookhouse Five.

Basic tracking of If You See Me took place on 4 December 1975, at Cookhouse Studios, Minneapolis, Minnesota (during the same set of sessions as Games, I’ll Always Love You, If We Don’t and Better Than You Think), marking the earliest recording sessions featuring Prince to have been released.

Pepé Willie later recounted that Prince was unhappy with his guitar playing at one part of the track and asked the next day if he could re-record a section of his part; Willie arranged with the studio for this to happen while Willie himself played golf. Due to a change in the recording equipment’s EQ levels (which had been changed for another artist’s recording session), Prince’s re-recorded guitar segment is audibly different than his guitar on the rest of the track.

Matt "Dr." Fink remixed the track in June 2010, at StarVu Studios, Minneapolis, Minnesota, along with the other Cookhouse Studios tracks from the same session. In 2011, the remixed version by Matt "Dr." Fink was included as the second track on the digital collection The Cookhouse Five.

Somewhere during the summer of 1982, Prince recorded an entirely new version of the track at his Kiowa Trail Home Studio in Chanhassen, Minnesota, now titled Do Yourself A Favor. According to Pepé Willie, Prince, who recorded the song from memory and had not heard it for years, told him that he wanted to release it on one of his next albums. Do Yourself A Favor was not included on any known configuration of 1999, Purple Rain, Around The World In A Day or Parade.

In 1986, Willie gave his permission to Jesse Johnson to release a version of the track, clearly inspired by Prince’s 1982 take, also titled Do Yourself A Favor, on his album Shockadelica. Johnson’s version misses Prince’s own lyrical contribution to the track, a humorous spoken section in his "Jamie Starr" voice, so his version is not considered to have any input by Prince. The song is credited to Pepé Willie and Jesse Johnson, but Johnson’s contribution is unknown (If You See Me is credited to Pepé Willie only).

Prince’s 1982 version of Do Yourself A Favor was released in 2019 on the Super Deluxe Edition edition of the 1999 album. Oddly, the credits on 1999 Deluxe are shared by Pepé Willie and Jesse Johnson, and Prince’s lyrical contribution is not acknowledged.


Recording Information
Recording Sessions
Date Studio Additional info
4 December 1975 Cookhouse Studios, Minneapolis, Minnesota Basic tracking (94 East version) (as If You See Me)
Early December 1975 (assumed) Cookhouse Studios, Minneapolis, Minnesota Additional guitar recording by Prince (as If You See Me)
Summer 1982 Kiowa Trail Home Studio, Chanhassen, MN, USA Re-recording (Prince version, as Do Yourself A Favor)
June 2010 StarVu Studios, Minneapolis, Minnesota Remix of 94 East version by Matt "Dr." Fink (as If You See Me)
Recording Personnel

If You See Me (94 East version)

  • Pepé Willie - vocals and guitar
  • Dale Alexander - drums
  • Wendell Thomas - bass guitar
  • Prince - guitar
  • Marcy Ingvoldstad - vocals
  • Kristie Lazenberry - vocals


Do Yourself A Favor

  • Prince - all vocals and instruments

Versions
Released Versions
Title Length Released Version Additional info
If You See Me 4:09 If You See Me (single) Studio additional info needed
If You See Me 5:40 Symbolic Beginning

The Early Years
One Man Jam
94 East Featuring Prince
Purple Snow: Forecasting the Minneapolis Sound

Studio a.k.a. If You See Me (Vocal)
If You See Me (Instr.) 5:40 Symbolic Beginning

The Early Years
One Man Jam

Instrumental a.k.a. If You See Me (Instrumental Version)
If You See Me 5:40 The Cookhouse Five Remix Remix by Matt "Dr." Fink
If You See Me (Instrumental) 5:40 The Cookhouse Five Remix Remix by Matt "Dr." Fink
Do Yourself A Favor 9:01 1999 Super Deluxe Edition
Studio 1982 solo Prince re-recording


Unreleased Versions
Title Version Additional Info
If You See Me Studio Initial 1975 recording before Prince’s additional guitar overdubs
 
Additional Information

See also Trivia

  • This track (as If You See Me), recorded in December 1975, marks a part of the earliest-recorded sessions featuring Prince to have been released.

References
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