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RIP – Denise Matthews Says Blame It On Vanity!

RIP – Denise Matthews Says Blame It On Vanity!

Denise Matthews

By: Philippe Matthews

She may have been born January 4, 1959 as Denise Katrina Matthews but the world remembers her 1982 contribution to pop music as the sultry lead singer of the group Vanity 6 (Made up of Prince’s high school girlfriend Susan Moonsie and Boston native, Brenda Bennett) with the release of the dance smash; Nasty Girl. After one year, Vanity went solo and released her solo smash Under the Influence and rapidly began her descent into drugs and the decadent life.

Even to this day the Vanity’s music and Nasty Girl image is still pulling people on the dance floor and has influenced such artists as Janet Jackson, Britney Spears, En Vogue and the Pussycat Dolls.

Well it is a new day and today, Vanity is no longer a nasty girl and hasn’t been for the last nineteen years when she decided to give her life to Christ and became a born again Christian. On the Philippe Matthews Show; Denise Matthews is under a new influence and her Evangelical message is currently influencing millions of Christians.

Denise gave her life to Christ after the excessive abuse of smoking crack cocaine caused her kidneys to fail; preparing her for certain death. She was rushed to Cedars-Sinai hospital in Los Angeles and was immediately put on life support. Denise recalls, “Being told you have three days to live, it doesn’t matter how you come to Jesus, JUST COME! I really gave Him my life that day. I remember praying to Jesus ‘Do whatever it takes just please don’t let me die,’ I made promises I would leave Egypt and never go back, except of course to preach.”

The Canadian born again beauty went blind for six months because of high blood pressure and other complications. Denise truly was living the creed, no test no testimony. “Well that’s a load of testimony right there!   However, I am busy overcoming many issues in my life. That’s a hard place going through tremendous torturous fires in your body.  I’m still going through it, I just had three more surgeries in the last eight years. My body would rather be home in Heaven however as King David said I must serve my generation, I give Jesus my best, and I love all people, even my enemies I have learned to love. All that to say how important it is to know that Jesus meets you in the fire and goes through with you, and we always come out like the three Hebrew boys — without that burnt smoke smell on our bodies learning magnificent lessons and overcoming.”

Due to the effects on her kidneys of years of drug use while a performer, she must now undergo peritoneal dialysis three days a week (each session is 20 minutes long). Today she lives with only one regret, “Being without Jesus for so many years,” Denise offered. “I wish I was saved my whole life!”

Denise finds strength and grace in all aspects of her life, living in a constant state of gratitude for the second chance at living life. “Everything works together for the good of the love of God and are called according to His purpose,” offers Denise. “I got purpose and His name; Jesus. Eighteen years ago they said I would die, proclaiming death over my life, but Jesus! Amen, i am still here. isn’t God great?”

After years of writing, editing and rewriting, Denise has finally released her autobiography, Blame It on Vanity. She says, “I have been writing this book for 18 years. When I had first finished it, God told me to throw it out — it is time to grow up. Inside the pages I had told all the dirt, my dirt, their dirt his dirt and everything anyone has ever done to me.”

The autobiography is not a gossip book filled with secrets and scandal, instead Denise chose to write a very truthful account of her tumultuous childhood and rock star life. In answer to the question what will people reading this book receive, she says, “A lot of the inside of me, real truth telling. They will read of two relationships mostly the one of Prince, the other of King Jesus.”

Another relationship in the book has to do with the physical, emotional and psychological abuse she and her sisters faced from her biological father. Denise doesn’t like talking about it publicly which is why she wrote about her childhood pain in her book. She says, “That is a long story I would prefer you read the chapters, plus you will cry and get your computer all wet!” There was a faint glimpse of closure between Denise and her father when he was on his death bed and looked up at Denise and said, “I love you Denise!” Her chilling reply, “You know what i said? Phillipe, I never believed him.”

Before she blamed her life on Vanity, she first blamed it on her father Denise says, “ Yes I did, but now I blame me for everything after he died and I continued to live. ”She was fifteen when he died and did not forgive him until or herself until she was saved. “Yes until I came to Jesus in 1991.”

Her last relationship she profiles in the book was her marriage to football player Anthony Smith, of the Oakland Raiders. They divorced in 1996. She recalls, “Yes, I was married. I have a sincere love relationship with my soul mate, whom I finally yearned for; Jesus my Father, my God amen! My ex divorced me, I followed Jesus. He went the other way, I forgave him for cheating. God said ‘Let no man put asunder what God has joined together.’ Some of us have put our own wrong together without listening to Jesus, that’s another story. I have been a celibate virgin for almost fourteen years.”

In closing, I asked Denise what advice would she give women and men wanting to pursue their dreams but have a similar childhood story? “Find Jesus, Follow Jesus, Seek Jesus and never leave Jesus. The whole world is going to pot but Jesus, now Him you can trust, the world is Egypt. I am afraid for those that deny Him, or those that have known Him and walked away.”

Between praising God, dialysis and signing autographed copies of her book, Denise finds time to work on the launch of Pure Heart Ministries. “We bring souls to Jesus,” Denise says, “I preach wherever God sends me and I do not charge. I am not a wealthy woman as most suppose. I live for Jesus, people give me offerings, God supplies all my needs…amen?! Love and more love!”

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About Philippe Matthews


  1. VanityDeniseFan

    Hi. I’ve never heard of your show. This was my first time listening to it. I just want to say that this interview with Denise Matthews was fantastic. Thank you for just listening to her and giving her the time she needed to tell us about her life. Thanks for allowing her to speak freely without a bunch of interruptions. Denise has die-hard fans who love her deeply and are happy when we get an opportunity to hear her speak. Thank you again.

  2. To read about what Denise has gone through hurts me sincerely, (from the top and bottom of my heart and soul). I love her so much and always will. For the moment money is tight. I’ve recently had to help some one that had a surgery. However, (to be helpful), after I pay off that debt I will be buying her book and would like to be helpful in any other way that I can. I should be OK by next week or so. I hope everyone else will find it in their hearts to help Denise. She is a child of God and there’s this special vibe that I feel for her in my heart. May God protect you Denise!
    Thank you Philippe!

  3. just recently i went on line 2 buy her book but my card keep on declining. so i’m paying with money order they didn’t say how much 4 s/h whatever it maybe i’ll pay 4 the charges after the book comes in.ms. denise matthews i love u with all my heart, you mean the whole world 2 me. when the 1st time i saw your beautiful face it was LOVE at 1st sight ever since the year 1982 til now.there’s not a day that goes by that i’m thinking of u only. i’m a 4-ever love die-hard fan of u,i have written a letter 2 ms. denise i even left her my cell # 4 her 2 call me 1 day that’s 1 of my biggest wish 2 see her in personal & to hear her voice on my phone. can’t wait 2 get the book.may God bless and keep u ms. matthews love u 4-ever!

  4. You let her speak and speak…which is wonderful because you can tell she really had a lot to get off of her chest. She really loved the lord


  6. Yes ,I too thank you for sharing Ms Vanity interview. I am on P.D. dialysis too , and what Vanity went through I too share the kidney disease …… I didn’t know Vanity gave her life too Jesus …… That is so good to hear , I love that Vanity says Look to Jesus and trust Jesus…… I loved to hear that….. Thank you..

  7. Ms. Matthews is a poster child illustrating the catastrophic effects of Adverse Childhood Events (ACEs). Her self-medicating her deep childhood traumas with drugs, ended up cutting her earthly life too short.

    The ACE study was initially conducted as a joint project between Dr. Fellitti (Kaiser SanDiego) and Dr. Robert Anda (Centers for Disease Control), when they tracked 17,000 Kaiser patients and saw huge correlations between Adverse Childhood Events (such as witnessing abuse, being sexually abused, experiencing their parents’ divorce, having a parent incarcerated, having a parent abusing drugs and/or alcohol, etc.) and adult addictions and/or poor health.

    Dr. Nadine Burke Harris (pediatrician in SF, CA) and others have taken the baton and is spreading awareness of ACEs and how to catch and treat them early. Dr. Harris gave a widely viewed TED talk, and she advocates in CA. There are websites, such as AcesTooHigh.com also spreading awareness.

    An adjunct to the ACE study is identified Resiliency factors that can help counteract the effects of ACEs, when employed early enough. Gives hope.

    Pinpointing and naming these things is a step to healing them.

    Ms. Matthews’ era did not have the benefit of this awareness, but the current generation does. That is, if the current generation becomes aware.

    The scourge of childhood traumas and abuses and their often life-long detrimental effects, must end.

  8. Dear Comment Moderator:

    Please change this sentence from “…is spreading awareness…” to “…are spreading awareness…”

    Dr. Nadine Burke Harris (pediatrician in SF, CA)….are spreading awareness of ACES…”

    Please do not post this comment. Please post only my first comment (with my requested edit).

    Thank you!

  9. Too bad she was not more
    Famous for her second life and she had to die for that.
    People enjoy more another kind of life, unfortunatly.
    I am very surprised Prince never helped her when she had health problems, remember she was forced to open a gofundme account to pay her bills, must have been medical bills, I can only imagine….
    Since she refused any money from her passed life she might have refused Prince’s money as well, I have no idea. I am saying that because she said they still spoke on the phone, not often tho, but I am sure prince knew about her life…. There must be an explanation and a good one Denise, I have no doubt about it 🙂

  10. I am sure that Prince helped Denise when she needed it, he was a very private person and i am sure will not publicize his name on a GOFUNDME account. He probally called her up and gave her the money she needed, either way both will be missed and may they rest in paradise.

    • Thank you and Denise for all your time and talent that you gave to the music world and at the concerts. I liked both you and Prince and I am sorry that I never had the time to see either one of you in concets. I want to say that you were passionate and gave so many years for others. So did Prince and I hope that you and Prince will look down at our emails and be thankful for what we say. God Bless both of you!

      Tyra Newman

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