Local Current Blog

Collaborators spanning Prince’s career dedicate ‘The Cross’ cover to Minneapolis

On the day marking 62 years since Prince was born in Minneapolis, 26 collaborators spanning his career have collaborated, remotely, on a cover of “The Cross.”

Created under the auspices of Kirk Johnson’s KAJ Productions, the recording is “dedicated to Minneapolis,” according to a title card. According to a press release:

Kirk Johnson of Minneapolis based KAJ Productions, long-time producer, dancer and drummer with Prince, has released a collaborative version of Prince’s song, “The Cross”, from his iconic Sign O’ The Times album. Bringing together musicians crossing all four decades of Prince’s remarkable career, the ensemble unites band members from The Revolution, New Power Generation and 3RDEYEGIRL.

In the midst of widespread unrest gripping Minneapolis and America, and the backdrop of the global COVID-19 pandemic, the performance is presented as a message of hope, love and peace. Prior to recording and producing the song, Johnson queried Prince’s fans via social media asking for song suggestions and the collective consensus was “The Cross.” Musicians then recorded parts individually within their homes, sending to Johnson who assembled the isolated parts into the unified performance.

Prince was born in Minneapolis, MN on June 7, 1958, thus the performance is being released on what would have been the legend’s 62nd birthday.

Here’s the full list of collaborators, ranging from a member of the band supporting Prince in his debut solo shows at the Capri Theater to musicians who were in his latest ensemble. Even Mayte jumps in, twirling with a gauzy scarf.

Adrian Crutchfield
Ashley Tamar Davis
Cassandra O’Neal
Chris Bailey
Chris James
Donna Grantis
Frédéric Yonnet
Ida Neilsen
Joey Rayfield
Josh Dunham
Kenni Holmen
Kip Blackshire
Kirk Johnson
Levi Seacer
Lynn Grissett
Marcus Anderson
Matt Fink
Michael Nelson
Mike Scott
Mono Neon
Morris Hayes
Sonny Thompson
Steve Strand
Tommy Barbarella
Tony M