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Janelle Monae remembers the joy of performing with Prince


Kevin Mazur/WireImage for NPG Records 2013Janelle Monae is receiving the Trailblazer Award tonight at the Billboard Women in Music gala in New York City, and she’ll never forget the joy of performing with another trailblazer, Prince.

Janelle and Prince were very close, working together in the studio, and on stage. He’s featured on the song “Giving Them What They Love” on her 2013 album, The Electric Lady. Prince remixed the track “Q.U.E.E.N.” on the album, and he worked with Monae on her latest album, Dirty Computer, before he passed away in 2016.

Janelle says one of the highlights of her career was opening one of Prince’s concerts, and then surprising the audience by having him appear during her set.

“He came on stage with me to sing our song that we have together called ‘Giving Them What They Love’ and he was rolled out,” the singer/actress tells Billboard. “He loved playing tricks like this. He got rolled out on a dolly under the stage. Nobody knew he was coming, and I was the opening act for him, and the fact that he came on stage with us before he had to perform, it meant the world. It really meant the world.”

You can see Monae receive the Trailblazer Award as the Billboard Women In Music Gala will be streamed live from New York City on Twitter tonight from 7 p.m. ET to 10 p.m. ET.

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