R.I.P. Vanity

Denise Matthews who became Vanity under Prince’s tutelage in the ’80’s has died today at the age of 57. Vanity became famous in the ’80’s as Prince’s girlfriend and the lead singer of his all-girl group Vanity 6. They scored a hit in 1982 with their song “Nasty Girl” and their album became a collectible from Prince’s prime era of producing other acts. She later signed a recording contract with Motown and released two albums, Wild Animal and Skin On Skin.  Her “Mechanical Emotion” duet with Morris Day was very popular and the single “Pretty Mess.” Jesse Johnson produced music for her songs for the Action Jackson soundtrack. As an actress, she appeared in 12 films including Action Jackson, The Last Dragon and 52 Pick-Up. The Ontario native also did television work until she retired from the entertainment industry and became a born-again Christian in 1997. In 2010, she released her autobiography, Blame It On Vanity. Matthews had been in declining health for years after suffering kidney failure in the ’90’s and receiving a transplant.