The Black Eyed Peas Recall Prince’s ‘I Gotta Feeling’ Praise

'Those songs don't come all the time,' will.i.am remembers the Purple One telling him.

In 2009, the Black Eyed Peas found incredible success with their feel-good party track “I Gotta Feeling.” It was a multicultural club banger that was all about being with your pals and embracing those moments of pure party joy.

Now, it’s become a staple of their live show , and frontman will.i.am was surprised to learn about one of the song’s biggest fans.

“I remember we played the song in Minnesota, and Prince was at the show, and he called me on the phone afterwards. He said, ‘Congratulations,’ ” will.i.am recalled. “He says, ‘You know, those songs don’t come all the time. You’re blessed to have one of those songs. You know, they’re gifts.’ I was like, ‘Wow.’ For someone like Prince to tell you that, that’s bigger than a Grammy for me.”

Night after night, the song gets an incredible response from fans. “When we perform it, in my mind, like, ‘Where did that song come from?’ I can’t believe this is us and look at all these people singing it like it’s theirs,” he told MTV News when we caught up with the group at Terminal 5 in New York, where they were taping a show set to air Friday night (April 22) at midnight ET on MTV. “Wow, that’s a beautiful thing.”

That song came just at the right time, since the band was looking for a way to update their concerts. “We used to do ‘Let’s Get It Started’ at the end, because that was our big finale, which didn’t really make sense. And for a while, [we did] ‘My Humps’ and then it got to the point where we didn’t want to play ‘My Humps’ no more. You know, ’cause ‘I met a girl down at the disco,’ I just didn’t want to say that no more, lyrically.

“It wasn’t like my best lyrically, but it was fun,” he continued. “It wasn’t lyrical miracles, but the beat was rocking, so we throw the beat in there and just let the beat linger, but now ‘I Gotta Feeling’ is like ‘What?’ ”

Don’t miss the Black Eyed Peas’ performance Friday at midnight ET on MTV.