Vanity 6

Vanity 6

Infobox musical artist
Name = Vanity 6

Img_capt =
Background = group_or_band
Birth_name =
Alias =
Origin = Minneapolis, Minnesota, U.S.
Genre = R&B, funk, soul, new wave, pop, rock
Occupation = Band
Years_active = 1981 - 1983
Label = Warner Brothers
Associated_acts = Prince, The Revolution, The Time, Apollonia 6
Current_members = defunct
Past_members = Vanity (Denise Matthews)
Brenda Bennett
Susan Moonsie

Vanity 6 was a female vocal trio assembled by Prince in the early 1980s. They released one album, which blended the sounds of pop, New Wave, dance music, R&B, and funk.


In 1981, Prince, himself a rising musical star, suggested that his three female friends—Susan Moonsie, his wardrobe mistress, Boston native Brenda Bennett, and his personal assistant, Jamie Shoop form a girl group that would be called "The Hookers." Prince's vision was that the three women would perform in lingerie and sing sensual songs with lyrics about sex and fantasy. Prince had been wanting to mentor a girl singer or group since the late 70s when he saw the film "A Star is Born" with Barbra Streisand and Kris Kristofferson Fact|date=March 2007.

The original trio recorded a few demos before Prince met Denise Matthews, a nude model and Canadian B-movie actress, in January of 1982. Prince was so taken by Matthews' charisma that he decided she would be the perfect front-woman for his "Hookers" project. Around this time, Prince and Matthews began a romantic relationship. With Matthews' arrival, Shoop bowed out of the group. Matthews was eventually re-christened Vanity. (Some versions of the name's origin have Prince suggesting that Matthews use the stage name "Vagina" (pronounced "Vageena"), she refused and renamed herself "Vanity" instead; other versions of the story suggest that it was Prince himself who coined the name "Vanity," as he said that looking at Matthews was like looking in a mirror at the female version of himself.)

With the new trio finalized, Prince renamed the group Vanity 6 (the number representing the group's breast count). He provided the group, now dressed in lingerie and high heels, with provocative songs (although within the album credits, group members were sometimes given sole writing credits). Their first single, "He's so Dull" did not do much on the charts, but did appear in the film "National Lampoon's Vacation".

The second single "Nasty Girl" was a hit on both the U.S. R&B chart and U.S. Dance chart (where it hit number one), and it also made an appearance on the Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles chart. The song was featured in the film "Beverly Hills Cop", although it was not included on the soundtrack. Members of the group also provided backing vocals on Prince's albums during their existence.

Dissension and dissolution

The third single, "Drive Me Wild," was another minor hit. Music videos were shot for all three singles. Their self-titled album (which would turn out to be their only release) was eventually certified gold. The group opened up on the Triple Threat Tour, between 1982 and 1983, which also featured The Time and Prince, as the headliner. The fact that The Time played behind a curtain while Vanity 6 performed caused a rift between the bands and friction within those friendships.Fact|date=March 2007

To the other group members' dismay, Prince chose Vanity to pose with him for a Richard Avedon photograph used on the cover of an issue of "Rolling Stone" magazine. The issue also contained a two-page Avedon photo of Vanity 6.

In 1983, Vanity recorded a demo for a new song, "Sex Shooter," and started reading for her lead role in "Purple Rain" opposite Prince. Prior to the shooting of the movie, later in 1983, Vanity abruptly decided to leave the Prince camp and relinquish her role in the film. Many reasons were given for her sudden departure, including money, the end of their romantic relationship, and, most importantly, Vanity having been offered a lucrative solo deal from Motown Records.

Vanity was replaced in "Purple Rain" by Patricia Kotero, who would later use the stage name Apollonia. She also inherited the lead role in Vanity 6, which was renamed Apollonia 6, alongside Bennett and Moonsie. The new trio also recorded what would be "their" only album in 1984, but that album went on to outsell the "Vanity 6" album, mainly on the strength of Kotero’s newfound fame, thanks to her movie role and its popularity.

In the years since the group’s breakup, Matthews renounced her Vanity persona and music and became a born again Christian."'



* 1982 "Vanity 6"


* 1982 "Nasty Girl"
* 1982 "He's So Dull"
* 1982 "Drive Me Wild"

cheduled for Vanity 6

A number of songs were in fact intended for the Vanity 6 follow up album, but due to Vanity's departure, these songs ended up performed by others.
* "Sex Shooter" was released by Apollonia 6.
* "17 Days," the B-side to Prince's "When Doves Cry," ended up being released by Prince, with Bennett’s background vocals still on the recording.
* "The Glamorous Life," which would be known as Sheila E.'s massive hit and signature tune.

ee also

*List of artists who reached number one on the US Dance chart

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Vanity — Van i*ty, n.; pl. {Vanities}. [OE. vanite, vanit[ e], L. vanitas, fr. vanus empty, vain. See {Vain}.] [1913 Webster] 1. The quality or state of being vain; want of substance to satisfy desire; emptiness; unsubstantialness; unrealness; falsity.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Vanity — ist: der englische Begriff für Eitelkeit der Künstlername der Sängerin/Schauspielerin Denise Matthews der Name einer Pornodarstellerin, siehe Vaniity ein Begriff der Telekommunikation, siehe Vanity Rufnummer Vanity Verlag bezeichnet einen Verlag …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • vanity — (n.) early 13c., that which is vain, futile, or worthless, from O.Fr. vanite, from L. vanitatem (nom. vanitas) emptiness, foolish pride, from vanus empty, vain, idle (see VAIN (Cf. vain)). Meaning self conceited is attested from mid 14c. Vanity… …   Etymology dictionary

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  • vanity — index jactation, pride Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

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  • vanity — [n] conceit, egotism affectation, airs, arrogance, big headedness*, conceitedness, display, ego trip*, narcissism, ostentation, pretension, pride, self admiration, self love, self worship, show*, showing off*, smugness, vainglory; concept 410 Ant …   New thesaurus

  • vanity — ► NOUN (pl. vanities) 1) excessive pride in or admiration of one s own appearance or achievements. 2) the quality of being worthless or futile. ORIGIN Latin vanitas, from vanus empty, without substance …   English terms dictionary

  • Vanity — In conventional parlance, vanity is the excessive belief in one s own abilities or attractiveness to others. In many religions vanity is considered a form of self idolatry, in which one rejects God for the sake of one s own image, and thereby… …   Wikipedia

  • vanity — I (New American Roget s College Thesaurus) Excessive pride Nouns 1. vanity, conceit, conceitedness; immodesty, self esteem, self love, self praise; complacency, smugness, amour propre, hubris; ego trip. See boasting, selfishness. 2. [false] pride …   English dictionary for students

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