Album: Closer Than Close

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Symbolicbeginning album.jpg 1995: Symbolic Beginning All Prince Albums All Related Artists Albums 1995: Child Of The Sun Childofthesun album.jpg
Closer Than Close

Closer Than Close (cover art)

Closer Than Close 20th Anniversary Edition (cover art)

Album details

Released: 13 June 1995
8 December 2015 (20th Anniversary Edition)
Length: 65:41 - US version
72:03 - international version
73:57 - Japanese version
140:15 - 20th Anniversary Edition
Label(s): Motown Records
Studio(s): Paisley Park Studios, Chanhassen, MN, USA

Charts, Certifications & Awards

Country: Chart Entry Date Peak Position Weeks in Chart
USA: Billboard R&B Chart 1 Jul. 1995 99 1
This album has not received any certifications in the USA
This album has not received any awards in the USA

Singles released

Of the singles released from this album, only the one with a Prince contribution is listed below:

I Want U
b/w I Want U (Earth Mama Version)
Iwantu single.jpg

See also

Concrete Jungle
Try Me
ConcreteJungle-album.jpg Tryme album.jpg
Closer Than Close is the second studio album by Rosie Gaines (after Caring released in 1985); her first since leaving the New Power Generation.

It features two songs with writing and musical input by Prince, I Want U, and My Tender Heart. And a cover of Turn Your Lights Down Low with Prince input. The US version contained a different tracklist than the rest of the world, and contained two versions of I Want U: I Want U (Purple Version) (included internationally) and I Want U (Inner City Blues) (Earth Mama Version) (otherwise included only in Japan).

Sessions and compiling

Work on a solo Rosie Gaines album began while she was still a member of the New Power Generation band, in 1990 (I Want U was first recorded in late 1989, before work on the album commenced). Work continued until September 1991, when she and Prince fell out regarding her solo career. She was contracted to Paisley Park Records, however, and continued to work on the album without Prince following her departure from the band (after the Diamonds And Pearls Tour). The album became known as Concrete Jungle.

After Paisley Park Records closed, she worked on the album further, renamed it Closer Than Close and took it to Motown Records. One version of Concrete Jungle was released as a digital download in 2009; see that album’s listing for details.

Other tracks containing input by Prince which were recorded for potential inclusion on the album included Streetwalker, In The Name Of Love (both of which remain unreleased), Hold Me (later released by Jevetta Steele, Pain (later released by Chaka Khan) and Hit U In The Socket (later released by the NPG Music Club). Additionally, Turn Your Lights Down Low (a cover version of the Bob Marley track from Exodus, 1977) was originally recorded with musical contributions by Prince, before being re-recorded without Prince input and released on the album albeit some of his background vocals were kept.

It is worth noting also that the versions of I Want U (Inner City Blue) and My Tender Heart released in 2009 on Concrete Jungle are earlier versions of the recordings of the tracks than those included on Closer Than Close.


The album did not enter the US Billboard Pop Chart, and reached only number 99 on the Billboard R&B Chart. The album produced two singles : I Want U and Are Your Ready. I Want U reached number 90 on the US Billboard R&B Chart and number 28 on the Billboard Hot Dance Music - Club Play Chart. Are You Ready did not chart. The song Closer Than Close was remixed and released in 1997 by Bigbang Records and became a club hit.

In 2015, the album was re-released digitally in an expanded version (with previously unreleased songs and versions) to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the original release.

Track listing
CD Digital (20th Anniversary Edition version)
(International Edition)

  1. I Want U (Purple Version) (3:36) 1
  2. Are You Ready
  3. Closer Than Close
  4. Googaga
  5. Ooh La La
  6. Turn Your Lights Down Low (4:29) 2
  7. My Tender Heart (5:10) 1
  8. I Almost Lost You
  9. Slowman
  10. Can U Handle It
  11. Concrete Jungle
  12. Get The Ghetto Off Your Mind
  13. December 25th
  14. Bubbly World
  15. Do What You Wanna Do

CD (US Edition)

  1. I Want U (Inner City Blues) (Earth Mama Version) (6:34) 3
  2. Are You Ready
  3. Closer Than Close
  4. Googaga
  5. Turn Your Lights Down Low (4:29) 2
  6. My Tender Heart (5:10) 1
  7. I Almost Lost You
  8. Slowman
  9. Can U Handle It
  10. Concrete Jungle
  11. Get The Ghetto Off Your Mind
  12. December 25th
  13. I Want U (Purple Version) (3:36) 1

CD (Japanese version)

  1. I Want U (Inner City Blues) (Earth Mama Version) (6:34) 3
  2. Are You Ready
  3. Closer Than Close
  4. Googaga
  5. Turn Your Lights Down Low (4:29) 2
  6. My Tender Heart (5:10) 1
  7. I Almost Lost You
  8. Slowman
  9. Can U Handle It
  10. Concrete Jungle
  11. Get The Ghetto Off Your Mind
  12. December 25th
  13. I Want U (Purple Version) (3:36) 1
  14. Bubbly World
  15. Do What You Wanna Do
  1. I Want U (Inner City Blue) (Earth Mama Version) (6:34) 3
  2. Are You Ready
  3. Closer Than Close
  4. Googaga (Making It Up As We Go Along)
  5. Ooh La La
  6. Turn Your Lights Down Low (4:29) 2
  7. My Tender Heart (5:10) 1
  8. I Almost Lost You
  9. Slowman
  10. Can You Handle It
  11. Concrete Jungle
  12. Get The Ghetto Off Your Mind
  13. December 25th
  14. Bubbly World
  15. Do What U Wanna Do
  16. Closer Than Close (Mentor Remake)
  17. I Want U (Purple Version) (3:36) 1
  18. Are You Ready (Chickhaboom Version)
  19. Closer Than Close (Daydreams of You Version)
  20. Swing Hard
  21. Poor Little Girlie
  22. I Want U (Paisley Version) (3:51) 1
  23. My Tender Love (My Tender Heart Demo) (5:05) 1
  24. December 25th (Alternate Version)
  25. Slowman (Alternate Version)
  26. Turn Your Lights Down Low (Alternate Version) (4:30) 2
  27. Closer Than Close (Instrumental)
  28. A Song for You (Live In Switzerland)
  29. Get The Ghetto Off Your Mind (Live In Switzerland)
  30. Are You Ready (Live In Switzerland)
  31. Independent Woman (Live In Switzerland)
  32. I Almost Lost You (Live In Switzerland)

1 Written by Prince and Rosie Gaines
2 written by Bob Marley
3 Written by Rosie Gaines and Prince. Contains segments of I Want You (written by Leon Ware and Arthur "T-Boy" Ross) and Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler) (written by Marvin Gaye & James Nyx, Jr.)


  • Steve McKeever - Executive Producer
  • Ricky Peterson - producer
  • Sonny Mediana - art direction, additional photography
  • James R. Minchin III - cover photography
  • Donald Graham - additional photography
  • Rudy Calvo - make-up
  • Lynn Bugai - stylist
  • Tom Tucker - engineer
  • Lee Blaske - string arrangements on My Tender Heart

  • Thank You’s. I’d like to take this moment to express my gratitude, thanks and praise to the everliving force of love, life and creation which brought and protects me here in this place I call universe…
  • Thank You… To my mother (Mattie Gaines) and father (Curtis West) for the cheers and the laughter, without your encouragement, love, understanding and wisdom, I couldn’t have done this. You are the best parents a daughter could wish for.
  • To my daughter Latoya, thank you for the loving help – you’ve been a good ear, a good fiend and a good daughter. Thank you for your input on the album.
  • To Francis for your spiritual and creative input. You’re my best friend. To my sister and my partner Mal… you’ve been down for me as long as I’ve known you. I thank and love you so much for that.
  • To my sister Yvonne for the spiritual conversations that we shared by phone. It’s been fun… thank you for being a sister. To my sister Mary for the appreciation you have for my music (I love you big sis).
  • To my brothers Fred, Marvin, Richard, Carl for your musical experience… much love from your baby sister.
  • To my nieces and nephews too numerous to name all… love ya, Auntie Rosie.
  • To Joja for all those late night chitchats we had. There aren’t that many people I know that I can talk about anything with… your sista Rosie.
  • Mijn ouders Francisco em Margretta (Boi en Truus) voor je liefdevollezoon en Oma Bode voor je kleinzoon.
  • Thanks to the entire Gaines, West and Jules families.
  • To Dana Bailey for your support and the years of waiting for me. You showed true belief in me. Thank you for your creative input… your friend Rosie Gaines.
  • To Bill Bailey – much respect because you’ve been there from the beginning – stay with the music, because when it hits, you feel no pain.
  • I’d like to say thank you very much to all the people who helped me create this album such as: Sandy Gallin for stickin with me when it was slippery, thank you thank you for there when I needed it most.
  • THANK U Scott Bankston, not only was it my pleasure to do business with you, but you’ll always be my friend.
  • The man I know as Prince for the chance you gave me and for the happy musical moments we shared.
  • Steve McKeever for having faith in me and my music… thanks to you, I know that an artist can be at a record company, when they have faith in the artist as you have for me… thank you for making me happy… much love and respect.
  • Jheryl Busby for the advice you gave me about finding what you want out of life without other people’s influences. Thank you for wise words.
  • Clarence Avant – It’s nice to have met you… I’m proud to be a member of the Motown family.
  • Chrysanthemum James… I love talking to you on the phone… you go girl.
  • Sonny Mediana… I’ve had the loveliest time with you and Ada. Keep your fresh ideas flowing. Stay creative with your bad self (daddy).
  • Paulinho Da Costa for putting so much soul and spirit into the songs, much respect brother.
  • Benjamin Wright and Charles Veal for the beautiful strings. I’m glad to have the real thing on the album. Everyone in the string section… it was a pleasure meeting you all.
  • Bob Margouleff for clearing up the issues and Brant Biles for letting the music do the talking…
  • All the great people at Studio 56, thank you for your hospitality. Ya’ll made me feel very comfortable… Billy “The Rooster” Franze. Steve Klong for your positive energy. Freddy Clark the funky guitarist. Sneaky Pete for sneakin all those wonderful notes. Buzzy Felten for being so creative… you’ve brought a positive vibe to the songs.
  • The Hornheads for being hornheads.
  • To all the people at Motown… Ruth, James C.I., Richard, Nadine, Michael, Robin, Charles… and anyone else whose name I’ve forgotten, thank you for all your support.
  • To all engineers at Paisley Park Studio, especially Steve Durkee.
  • To Ricky Peterson and Tom Tucker, it was nice working with you.
  • To the New Power Generation: Michael Bland (The Hard Hard Drummer), Sonny “Mo Funky” Thompson, Matt Fink, Tommy Barbarella, Miko Weaver for being true and honest, Levi Seacer Jr., thanks for believing in me and introducing me to Prince… I’ll always be grateful for that… Tony Moseley, Kirk Johnson, Damon Dickson… keep on dancing… I’m glad I know you…
  • To all the Bay Area people who supported me over the years, but especially Darnel Gill, Hope Holden, Lori Taylor, Tayna Miles, Vanda, Max, Brenda Vaughn.
  • To all my Minneapolis friends including Francois Richardson and my buddies Patrick, Sonny, Stacy, Butch and Christine. And by the way, Lynette, did ya get that gooch?
  • Melvin Johnson, keep being the cold chillin guitar player that you are, Cedric Rohwedder, you computer stud muffin, thanks for takin care of my friend, Dana. Dre Best, thanks for giving me your best. Thank you Foley, I had a lot of fun with you. You a badass musician. Mavis, Yvonne and Pops Staples, thank you for your inspiration. Thanks to all musicians I’ve played with over the years, especially Curtis Ohlson.
  • My African Connections – Ruper Prescott, Jah B., Taharka Abdullah, Abati, Jonjo, Iwan Menez and Donny Tucker.
  • And last but not least to the Rosie Gaines Band who are all very special to me and fine musicians.. Tony King on the drums, Eric “Stickman” Thompson on bass, Robert Bennett on percussion, Randy Emata on keyboards, B’Nai on guitar, Darnel Gill and Latoya Gaines on vocals, and Michael Johnson known as “the Preacher” on the raga-muffin.
  • People wake up, look around, don’t be a follower, be yourself. Find the divine creator inside, and remember it’s a beautiful world, the universe is abundant and waiting for all of us………..

LP, CD, Cassettes and Other versions
Country Format Cat. Number Comments Front Back Label 1 Label 2

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Variants, Special Editions and Reissues
Country Format Cat. Number Comments Front Back Label 1 Label 2


Additional Information

Promotion (at time of release) Trivia

  • Information needed.
  • A remix of the title track "Closer Than Close" by DJ Hippie Torrales and Mark Mendoza was released by Bigbang Records two years after the release of the album. This remix became a hit (#4 in the UK Singles Chart and #6 in the US Hot Dance Club Play) has sold over 8 million copies and earned Rosie Gaines a MOBO Award for Best International Single in 1997.
  • Rosie Gaines’ albums Closer Than Close (released in 1995), Try Me (planned for 1994 and released in 2005) and Concrete Jungle (planned for 1993 and released in 2009) were recorded around the same period (between 1990 and 1995 during her tenure with Prince as a band member or as a Paisley Park Records act, and the year following the closing of his label). They share several tracks in common, although some versions may be different. No less than eight songs that were on the 1995 Closer Than Close will be re-released on Concrete Jungle ("Concrete Jungle", "Get The Ghetto Off Your Mind", "Googaga (Making It Up As We Go Along)", "I Almost Lost You", I Want U, My Tender Heart, "Do What You Wanna Do" and "Ooh La La"). Both "Do What You Wanna Do" and "Ooh La La" were also included on Try Me.



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