Gorillaz's Damon Albarn Turned Down Working With Prince Because He Couldn't Smoke In the Studio

Taylor Hill/Getty Images for The Meadows Music & Arts Festival
Damon Albarn of Gorillaz perform onstage during Day 2 at The Meadows Music & Arts Festival at Citi Field on Sept. 16, 2017 in New York City. 

Everyone has their vices and deal-breakers, and for Damon Albarn not being able to smoke a cigarette inside a studio was enough for him to veto a collaboration with Prince. The Gorillaz frontman visited Radio X on Thursday (May 31) to chat about the band's forthcoming album, The Now Now, and host Gordon Smart couldn't resist inquiring about Prince's strict no-cigarette policy.

"I had done a gig in Minneapolis, and I was invited to go play with Prince," Albarn recalled. "I was having a drink and a fag [cigarette] -- I don’t actually smoke anymore, knocked that one on the head... But if I’ve invited someone to my studio, they’re my guest, and there aren’t any conditions like that.”

Albarn evidently felt strongly enough about the "condition" that he chose to nix the Prince project entirely rather than opting to take a smoke break outside. "Why the fuck would I not want to fucking go mad if I’m with Prince? I’d rather not do it and not get pissed off with the whole thing,” he continued.

"Could have been" moments aside, Albarn is busy gearing up for the release of The Now Now, which will mark the virtual ensemble's sixth LP to date.

Watch a clip of his interview below.