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Sinéad O’Connor’s Bizarre Prince Story Involves Soup and a Pillow Fight

Photo-Illustration: Vulture; Photos by Getty Images

Back in 2013, Sinéad O’Connor promised British music magazine Uncut that she had “a very funny story” about meeting Prince after she released a 1990 hit cover of “Nothing Compares 2 U,” a song he originally wrote for his band the Family. “It got violent, too, which is why I can’t go into it,” she told the magazine, adding, “I’ll tell it when I’m an old lady and I write my book.” Now, O’Connor is eight years older and has written that book, Rememberings, out on June 1. And as the New York Times reported in a new profile of the musician, she’s telling that story — which also involves, uh, soup and a pillow fight. Just let the Times explain:

She writes that Prince summoned her to his macabre Hollywood mansion, chastised her for swearing in interviews, harangued his butler to serve her soup though she repeatedly refused it, and sweetly suggested a pillow fight, only to thump her with something hard he’d slipped into his pillowcase. When she escaped on foot in the middle of the night, she writes, he stalked her with his car, leapt out and chased her around the highway.

Prince. Soup. Pillow fight. What more is there to know? “You’ve got to be crazy to be a musician, but there’s a difference between being crazy and being a violent abuser of women,” O’Connor told the Times of their bizarre meeting. Of “Nothing Compares 2 U,” the musician added, “As far as I’m concerned, it’s my song.” Okay then!

Elsewhere in the memoir, per the Times, O’Connor denies an alleged relationship with the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Anthony Kiedis but confirms one with Peter Gabriel. “To discover the profane term she assigns to their affair, you’ll have to read it,” the newspaper teases. O’Connor began writing the memoir in 2015 and later finished it after “a total breakdown,” she reportedly writes, after getting a hysterectomy, which led her to seek out years of mental-health care. She said she has been diagnosed with complex post-traumatic stress disorder and borderline personality disorder and calls the backlash to her infamous Saturday Night Live performance, during which she tore a photo of Pope John Paul II, traumatic. Now, along with the book, O’Connor said she is also readying an album, No Veteran Dies Alone, for later in 2021. She recorded the album — her first in seven years — with Irish electronic producer David Holmes, known for scoring Killing Eve and multiple Steven Soderbergh films.

Sinéad O’Connor Says Prince Forced Her to Eat Soup