Let’s take a closer look at all 21 of Madonna’s top 10 albums - from Madonna to Rebel Heart - and dive into their chart histories at www.billboard.com/madonna-21-top-10-albums
Let’s take a closer look at all 21 of Madonna’s top 10 albums - from Madonna to Rebel Heart - and dive into their chart histories at www.billboard.com/madonna-21-top-10-albums
'Here comes the Tidal Wave!!! Who Runs The World???????? #rebelhearts'
'Bad Girls of Tidal!! #Unapologeticbitches #rebelhearts'
'Tidal is not about consumption and greed! Its about protecting an art-form that is beloved to all of us MUSIC! #rebelhearts stand together for what they believe in!'
'Everything will be explained and revealed in time! Have Faith! And remember nothing is for free! This is a universal LAW. Somewhere-Somehow-Someone has to pay. There is always an exchange. #truth. #tidal'
'If you refer to Tidal as Illuminati, you are paying us the highest of compliments. As I've stated before it is another name for "The Enlightened Ones" a group of scientists, philosophers and artists that emerged after the dark ages. They changed and shaped the world for the better! Do the research and find out for yourself! #knowledge is power #rebelheart'
The membership-based service - similar to subscription service Spotify - will provide music and video content that users can stream on computers, tablets and smartphones or listen to offline. It is being offered in two formats: standard sound quality, and 'lossless high fidelity sound quality'.
Kanye West, Daft Punk, Alicia Keys, Jack White and Nicki Minaj were among the artists who announced at last night's New York event that they are co-owners of the service that launched quietly in October.
The celebrities, who also included Jason Aldean, Usher, members of Arcade Fire and deadmau5, stood in a line onstage as Keys spoke to the audience. Most of them wore black as a sign of solidarity. Keys called the event 'a graduation'.
She said the artists hope Tidal will 'forever change the course of music history' and ensure the viability of the industry.
Keys said: "So we come together before you on this day, March 30 2015, with one voice in unity in the hopes that today will be another one of those moments in time, a moment that will forever change the course of music history. For today we announce of Tidal, the first ever artist-owned, global music and entertainment platform.
'Our mission goes beyond commerce, it goes beyond technology. Our intent is to preserve music's importance in our lives. Music is the language of love, of laughter, of heartbreak, of mystery. It's the world's true, true, without question, universal language.'
Each of the owners signed documents at the event as the audience screamed when they walked to a table in the centre of the stage.
From Press Association Via Yahoo! News
The controversial hip-hop star helped produce several tracks on the Material Girl's new record Rebel Heart, and she returned the favour by penning a song for his next release.
She tells Complex magazine, 'He ended up only working on four songs, and then we wrote another song together, which is going to be on his record.'
Madonna also revealed she has future plans to team up with Drake, adding, 'We're gonna work together. Yeah, baby, it's in the pipeline.'
Hopefully a great performance of the track tonight will push her downloads even higher!
The star's latest release 'Living For Love' was made available in the UK earlier today (February 25), and has quickly scaled the iTunes sales chart.
It is only currently behind Noel Gallagher's promotional track 'Lock All The Doors', which has been released to promote his new album Chasing Yesterday.
'Living For Love's high sales have been achieved despite Radio 1 refusing to playlist the track as they deemed it irrelevant for their younger demographic - a decision which was protested by Madonna's fans.
'Living For Love' has been released in the UK today ahead of Madonna's performance at the Brit Awards this evening.
The star will take to the stage at London's O2 arena for the ceremony, which will be broadcast live on ITV from 8pm.
From Digital Spy
As previously reported, 'Living,' which Madonna performed at the Grammy Awards on Feb. 8, makes esteemed history on Dance Club Songs, where it reaches No. 1, becoming Madonna's 44th leader on the list. She ties George Strait, who's logged 44 No. 1s on Hot Country Songs, for the most toppers by an artist ever on any Billboard chart. 'Living' also debuts on Dance/Mix Show Airplay at No. 35.
From Billboard.com - thanks to Micheal
'The Queen of Pop reigns again with ‘Living for Love,’ tying with George Strait, the King of Country, for the most leaders on a single Billboard chart. Madonna makes Billboard chart history, as she earns her 44th No. 1 on Dance Club Songs, where ‘Living for Love’ lifts 2-1.'
There is more good news for the former material girl. Her single 'Living for Love' is finally exploding at pop radio. It is currently No. 37 and is gaining more than a million listener impressions a day. Many thought that Madonna’s new single was gaining airplay because of a radio pay deal, but it has been confirmed that radio stations are playing it out of their own will - that means Ms. Ciccone is getting a lot of requests and great call-out research.
Madonna has yet to debut on the Billboard Hot 100, but that should change now that 'Living for Love' is getting a lot of exposure. The success of 'Living for Love' will help Madonna’s next single 'Ghosttown,' which probably won’t have to be released for a long time now that 'Living for Love' is here for the long term. The folks at American radio obviously still care about the Queen of Pop. However, there have been rumors that the BBC’s Radio 1 has banned Madonna from their playlist because she is 'too old.' The Inquisitr spoke to Radio 1, who denied the claims.
Perhaps Radio 1 will see how successful Madonna has been in the United States with her new single and add it to their playlist. Madonna is scheduled to perform at the Brit Awards next week. Madonna will release Rebel Heart on March 10. Around that time, dates for her upcoming tour should be announced as well. The year 2015 is going to be a great year for Madonna fans.
From: www.inquisitr.com - thanks to David
The Queen of Pop’s latest single 'Living for Love' marks her 44th No. 1 hit on Billboard’s Dance Club Songs chart.
Strait, also called the King of Country, also logged 44 chart toppers between 1982 and 2009 on Hot Country Songs.
Madonna’s 13th studio album, 'Rebel Heart' is due out March 10.
From Relax News Via Yahoo! News
The legendary producer-and-DJ is excited to hear the 56-year-old singer's next LP - which leaked earlier this month but is due for release next year - and is very pleased she is has been recording dance tracks with Avicii because he believes that is the best genre for her.
He told BANG Showbiz: 'Madonna is still relevant, people still love her and she's still good. She's getting older of course but she still has a great voice. I think if she makes the right dance album I think she could become quite big again. I know she's working with very young people and I think she could do well with the right record.'
Madonna is an admirer of Moroder and her track 'Future Lovers' - which featured on her 2005 album 'Confessions on a Dance Floor' - has a bass line inspired by Donna Summer's 'I Feel Love', which Moroder produced and she opened her 2006 'Confessions Tour' with a medley of 'Future Lovers' and 'I Feel Love'.
Moroder is releasing his own new album in 2015, his first studio LP for more than 30 years, and the record features collaborations with Britney Spears, Sia, Charli XCX, Kylie Minogue, Mikky Ekko and Foxes, among others.
As well as his album, the 74-year-old musician still DJs all over the world and admits he was pleased when the EDM movement took off because he started to earn more money.
Moroder - who was a pioneer of dance music in the 70s and 80s - quipped: 'I love EDM because there's a lot of money around and I'm a DJ too so I'm making nice money! It is the pop music of the world now, the music that is considered dance.'
Like Prince, she has always been obsessed with both earthly pleasures and spiritual transcendence. But rarely have these two themes collided in such a head-on manner as they do on the six 'Rebel Heart' tracks she recently released after unfinished versions of some album tracks leaked; since then, 14 more unauthorized songs have surfaced on the Internet.
So what’s on Madonna’s mind? Just about everything. On 'Devil Pray,' a song about trying to overcome addiction, she sings 'Take my sins and wash them away/Teach me how to pray.' Yet 'Bitch I’m Madonna,' which features a guest rap from Nicki Minaj, is one of the most simplistic party anthems she’s ever done: 'We’ll be drinking, ain’t nobody gonna stop us/And well be kissing everyone that’s around us.'
'Unapologetic Bitch' is an angry breakup song, while 'Living for Love' is a gospel-inflected anthem about the healing power of love, and 'Ghosttown' is about retreating from the harshness of the world with your lover.
Granted, Madonna, 56, has never been particularly interested in thematic coherence on her albums. But these tracks are really all over the place. 'The reason I wanted to call the record ‘Rebel Heart’ was because I felt like it explored two very distinct sides of my personality,' Madonna told Billboard.com. 'The rebellious, renegade side of me, and the romantic side of me. In my mind, it was almost like I wanted to do a two-record set.'
'The music leads me - so I get lost in the sound of the music, and that creates a kind of emotional palate,' she elaborated to RollingStone.com. 'I found as I would look back at my songs and witness what I had written, I was coming from two very distinct places. I was observing, ‘Oh, these are two very strong sides of me that I need to express.’ '
Not including Madonna, who co-wrote and co-produced each song, 14 co-writers and 10 co-producers are credited on these six tracks. Alicia Keys co-wrote and played piano on 'Living for Love,' and Kanye West co-produced 'Illuminati.' Diplo - whose co-produced M.I.A.’s 'Paper Planes' as well as hits by Usher, Chris Brown and Alex Clare - is the dominant collaborator, with four co-writing and three co-producing credits.
Each song lives in a stylistic world of its own. 'Living for Love' is the most ecstatic dance number, 'Devil Pray' is moody mid-tempo semi-acoustic pop, and 'Ghosttown' is an atmospheric, warmly crooned ballad. 'Unapologetic Bitch' is ska-rap, and on the chilly 'Illuminati,' Madonna’s voice is processed to the point where it doesn’t really sound human. 'Bitch I’m Madonna' has a swirling, futuristic sound, and Madonna sings here with a childish sing-song quality, punctuated by angry outbursts.
And yet, despite their differences, these tracks have one thing in common: With their strong hooks, they all have the potential to be successful singles. And that kind of consistency hasn’t really been a hallmark of Madonna’s most recent albums.
Madonna may have been forced into releasing these songs, and she’s not happy about it, having called it 'a form of terrorism' and 'artistic rape.' But it’s going to work to her advantage, since these six tracks create a very good first impression of the 'Rebel Heart' album.
The songs, available for instant download upon pre-ordering the album (due March 10) or as a la carte purchases, were made available digitally in a surprise move at midnight on Friday (Dec. 19), following massive demo leaks earlier in the week. (An additional 14 demos leaked on Dec. 23.) The songs soar onto the chart, therefore, on the strength of only a partial week of sales and with only small benefits from other metrics (streaming, radio airplay and club play).
The cuts mark Madonna's first entries on Hot Dance/Electronic Songs, which premiered on Jan. 26, 2013.
'Bitch I'm Madonna,' featuring Nicki Minaj, leads with sales of 12,000 downloads, according to Nielsen Music. 'Living,' the album's first proper single, starts with 10,000 sold and 'Unapologetic,' 7,000. The tracks begin on Dance/Electronic Digital Songs at Nos. 9, 12 and 14, respectively. (She notches her first top 10 on the list, which launched in January 2010.)
Two versions of 'Living,' the album original and an instrumental, shipped to club DJs on the evening of Dec. 21. Remixes are currently in production and, once approved by Madonna, will be sent out.
Madonna leads all acts with 43 Dance Club Songs No. 1s, with her most recent, 'Turn Up the Radio,' ruling on Sept. 8, 2012.
Madonna told Billboard on Dec. 21 that 'Living' went through more than 10 incarnations during the recording process, including ones with vocals from British singer MNEK. 'There will be remixes with MNEK's voice,' she confirmed.
As for radio airplay, top 40 has so far not warmed to 'Living.' It's received a mere 10 plays at the format (through Dec. 23) (led by KMXV Kansas City, which has sampled it three times). Then again, Interscope Records serviced the song at midnight, Monday morning (Dec. 22) as a soft sell. An Interscope source tells Billboard that the label will re-service the song after New Year's and decide on an official 'add' date shortly thereafter. (Surely the song's rush release and Christmas week timing, when many programmers are on vacation, play into radio's general lack of interest in the song so far.)
Madonna last reached the Pop Songs airplay chart in 2012, when 'Give Me All Your Luvin' ' (featuring Minaj and M.I.A.) and 'Girl Gone Wild' reached Nos. 24 and 38, respectively. 'Luvin' 'was aided by coordinated first-day plays on iHeartMedia-owned stations, as well as Madonna's performance of it during the halftime show at Super Bowl XLVI.
'The reason I wanted to call the record Rebel Heart was because I felt like it explores two very distinct sides of my personality,' Madonna says. (The album's buzz spurred Madonna to top the Billboard + Twitter real-time Trending 140 chart on Dec. 22.) 'The rebellious, renegade side of me, and the romantic side of me.'
'(Fans will) just get my rebellious and romantic side all mixed in together.'
From Billboard.com - thanks to Micheal
The leak comes in the wake of Madonna’s attempt to circumvent her previous unfinished work appearing online by releasing six tracks from her upcoming album Rebel Heart earlier than she intended to distribute them.
The new leak first appeared on Dec. 23 and includes 14 songs. According to Idolator, the tracks, including a collaboration with Pharrell, are: 'Veni Vidi Vici,' 'Beautiful Scars,' 'Freedom,' 'God Is Love,' 'Hold Tight,' 'Best Night,' 'Inside Out,' 'Tragic Girl,' 'Nothing Lasts Forever,' 'Holy Water,' 'Graffiti Heart,' 'Body Shop,' and 'Back That Up (Do It) feat. Pharrell.'
Madonna posted the upcoming album to her Instagram, writing, 'Real Rebels think for themselves! Real Rebels respect ART! Real Rebels are Rebels in their #rebelheart.' After the last leak, she also posted to her Instagram account and thanked those fans who have not listened to the leaked tracks.
The news of the surprise drop came when Madonna posted a link over the weekend on Instagram announcing the release of the six songs as, 'an early Christmas gift' to those that preordered the album. Fans immediately went to iTunes and drove the songs to #1 around the globe.
Instantaneously Rebel Heart exploded on social media with the album topping the Billboard Trending 140 Chart.
Rebel Heart will be released in March 2015 on Interscope Records. Producers include Madonna, Diplo ('Living For Love,' 'Bitch I'm Madonna,' 'Unapologetic Bitch'), Kanye West ('Illuminati'), Billboard ('Ghosttown'), DJ Dahi and Blood Diamonds ('Devil Pray'). The album was recorded in London, Los Angeles and New York.
The day after the tracks hit iTunes, Madonna was Number One on the digital music service's charts in 41 countries - everywhere from the U.S. and Israel to Russia and the Philippines. And she gave her first interview about the surprise launch to Rolling Stone:
It's safe to presume you've had a busy couple of days?
Oh my goodness. So busy. Let's talk about something good.
The album focuses on two themes: listening to your heart and being a rebel. When you sat down to write, were you guided by these ideas above any musical plans?
I never sit down and consciously think I want to write a song about a subject. Music leads me to ideas and to where I want to go emotionally. When I first started, I was writing with Avicii's team of writers and they were separated into two different groups. One of them had a much more upbeat approach to songwriting, sonically speaking, and the other team chose darker chords. The music leads me - so I get lost in the sound of the music, and that creates a kind of emotional palate. I found as I would look back at my songs and witness what I had written, I was coming from two very distinct places. That happened organically, not planned out, and I was observing, 'Oh, these are two very strong sides of me that I need to express.'
So decisions about who you trust to guide you, musically, are clearly quite crucial.
Yeah. And sometimes in the writing phase of the music, there are some people who I really felt a connection to, just as human beings, and felt they understood me as a songwriter and a person, so those people were easier for me to write with. Writing songs, you have to be vulnerable, you have to not be afraid to express yourself and to say things or share. It's almost like writing your diary in front of somebody and reading it out loud. Some people made me feel comfortable and I felt connected to them and other people seemed very strange to me. It was almost like an acting exercise, you know, just putting myself in a room and letting ideas flow even if I didn't feel so connected to the people.
'Living for Love' is a pretty triumphant breakup song.
It's a breakup song. [Laughs]
To read the rest of the interview visit: www.rollingstone.com/music/features
It’s a rather large understatement to say that it’s been a crazy couple of weeks for Madonna.
On Tuesday night, more than 10 of the singer’s unreleased demo recordings turned up on the Internet, causing the singer and her team to go into 'overdrive' to combat the stolen leaks. ('I haven’t slept in a week,' she says.) The songs were from the sessions for her forthcoming 13th studio album, which at the time, had not been announced (and is still not finished).
To counter the leak, Madonna accelerated the release of new music: On Friday night (Dec. 19), she announced that her album, Rebel Heart, would be released on March 10, 2015 through Interscope Records, and six of its tracks would become immediately available to purchase. Among those tracks are the set’s lead single, the Diplo-produced soul-meets-house jam 'Living For Love.' How far ahead of schedule was the release? The single wasn’t supposed to premiere until Feb. 14, 2015.
The album - which features a collaboration with Nicki Minaj - is also available to pre-order, and has topped the iTunes Store's top albums tally in more than 40 countries, including the United States. She also dominated the real time Billboard + Twitter Trending 140 chart on Saturday night (Dec. 20), where two of the album’s songs ('Living For Love' and 'Bitch, I’m Madonna') were concurrently in the top three.
Billboard spoke to Madonna on Sunday morning via phone, to talk about her new album, its 'chaotic' recording process, and how her day-to-day business has changed because of the leaks. She also discusses her fondness of Diplo (he’s a 'badass'), a possible Grammy Awards performance, and how no one has ever called her an 'Unapologetic Bitch.'
Billboard: How are you doing?
Madonna: I'm good. I'm good, I haven't slept in a week, but I'm good.
I can only imagine the week that you've had so far.
Yeah. It's been a very intense couple of weeks.
Are you OK right now? As OK as you can be considering what's been happening?
Yeah. I mean, you know, I'm not happy that unreleased demos are out there in the world for people to hear, listen, judge, etcetera, etcetera. Once that happened we went into overdrive. A) Trying to figure out where the leaks were coming from, and then B) Trying to combat that with putting out finished music that people could focus on versus demos that were never meant for anyone to hear. So, that led to no sleep.
Did at any point you turn to someone and say 'Bitch, I'm Madonna,' this shouldn't be happening to me?
No. I said, 'Shit, this is the age that we're living in.' It's crazy. I mean, look at what's going on with Sony Pictures. It's just the age that we're living in. It's crazy times. The Internet is as constructive and helpful in bringing to people together as it is in doing dangerous things and hurting people. It's a double-edged sword.
To read the rest of the lengthy interview visit: www.billboard.com/articles
Based on this first batch of Rebel Heart material, Madonna is looking to strike a balance. First, there’s are the figures at the centre of EDM and synth-pop, her chosen modes of operation - meaning writers and producers like Diplo, Avicii, and Savan Kotecha. Then, she ropes in artists working at the vanguard across a variety of genres, from superstars like Kanye West to relative nobodies like producers Ariel Rechtshaid and Sophie. This is a savvy move - what a surprise, a smart play from one of the canniest pop stars to ever roam an arena - because it allows her to play to the masses while still pushing boundaries.
The songs that lead off this first Rebel Heart blast, lead single 'Living for Love' and 'Devil Pray,' could fit in neatly on the radio beside this year’s British house-pop crossovers and Avicii’s own 'Hey Brother.' The ones that close it, namely the abrasive half-rapped Kanye collaboration 'Illuminati' and caffeine-drunk trap anthem/Nicki Minaj feature 'Bitch I’m Madonna,' hew closer to the spirit of PC Music’s obscure SoundCloud accounts and the sharp edges of Yeezus.
And because Madonna exists in rarefied air, the kind reserved for luminaries like herself and Prince and very few others, each of her new releases is less of an independent statement than a response to everything she’s done before, another chapter tacked onto an epic novel with no definite end. The tones, themes, and imagery that make up her musical toolbox - the frank sensuality, the various methods of intoxication, the lapsed Catholicism, the uncompromising confidence - are gospel at this point, and they elevate some of the more forgettable Rebel Heart material to a base level of pleasure. It’s fun to hear Madonna deliver a line like, 'It might sound like I’m an unapologetic bitch / but sometimes you know I gotta call I like it is' (and try on 2 Chainz’ flow, just for kicks) because she has three’ decades worth of unapologetic bitchiness in her back pocket. It’s an easy score, sure, but it’s effective. And if the complete version of Rebel Heart, due March 10th via Interscope, can deliver a few more of those easy scores alongside a bit more adventurous songwriting, the album could be Madonna’s finest in almost a decade.
'Shit, this is the age that we're living in. It's crazy,' she told Billboard magazine, when asked about the investigation into how at least 10 of her unfinished, unreleased songs were leaked onto the Internet.
'I mean, look at what's going on with Sony Pictures. It's just the age that we're living in. It's crazy times.'
Washington accuses Pyongyang of being behind the hack at Sony that led to the release of embarrassing emails and caused executives to halt the debut of the madcap comedy action film 'The Interview.'
The film about a fictional CIA plot to kill the country's leader infuriated North Korea, although Pyongyang has repeatedly denied it was behind the cyber-assault on Sony.
'The Internet is as constructive and helpful in bringing people together as it is in doing dangerous things and hurting people. It's a double-edged sword,' Madonna said.
Asked about her recording security, she said it already had been quite tight, so the leak came as a surprise.
'We don't put things up on servers anymore. Everything we work on, if we work on computers, we're not on WiFi, we're not on the Internet, we don't work in a way where anybody can access the information,' she said.
'Hard drives of music are hand-carried to people. We don't leave music laying around.'
From AFP Via Yahoo! News
The Queen of Pop took to Instagram last week to hit out at the hacking of unfinished demo tracks from her upcoming album calling it 'artistic rape' and 'a form of terrorism', but then deleted the posts.
Madonna has now told the Guardian that she has been 'living in a state of terror' since the leak, and revealed the tracks had very likely been stolen from her own personal computer.
She said: 'Obviously there is a person, or a group of people behind this that were essentially terrorising me. I don't want to sound alarming, but certainly that's how I felt. It's one thing if someone comes into your house and steals a painting off your wall: that's also a violation, but, your work, as an artist, that's devastating.'
'I'm an artistic person, I'm very expressive. I'm sorry if words alarm people, but that's what it felt like. It was not a consensual agreement. I did not say 'hey, here's my music, and it's finished.' It was theft.'
The 56-year-old singer's quotes came as she released six tracks from her forthcoming album Rebel Heart on iTune without notice - immediately hitting number one in the iTunes chart in 36 countries.
Publicist Liz Rosenberg said the songs were released because several in-progress demos were leaked earlier this week.
The full album, Rebel Heart, is set for release in March. Rosenberg says additional tracks will be released on February 9.
Madonna confessed she had been very alarmed by the hacking of her music. She claimed it was much more serious than the recent leaking of other artist's material such as Kanye West or Lady Gaga because the attack had come so early on her personal work, rather then simply being leaked from someone who worked within the music label a few weeks before release.
Madonna said: 'It wasn't just music. Images were coming out that I'd never seen before. It was then I started to think OK, what's happening? What is the source of the leak? It's not just one person, or someone sitting next to me in an office, or someone in a recording studio. I've had leaks before, a couple of weeks before an album was released, a lot of other artists have too, we all have to deal with that. But to have songs in the earliest demo form, from last March, that's extremely disturbing to me.'
She went on: 'You have to rethink your approach to making music, how to get the information back and forth to people, how to work in a more secure environment. It's alarming . Alarming because what do we do as artists? We want to finish writing our book or editing our film, we want to finish writing or producing our music. People need the arts, we need to be inspired, we need to hear people's records and see people's films. Why destroy that process for creative people? It's going to affect everybody.'
Press Association Via Yahoo! News
Fortunately for fans, that initial shock is over, and Madge is carrying on with an album release - 'Living For Love' previews Rebel Heart, now due out in March, and hints at the defiant pose that the follow-up to 2012's MDNA may strike after a few overstuffed dance projects.
Unlike Madonna's previous two lead singles, the pre-EDM banger '4 Minutes' and the cheerleader pep talk 'Give Me All Your Luvin',' 'Living For Love' leaves its focus on its lyrics, with the singer beginning over a regal piano line that's eventually joined by pulsing percussion.
The confidence Madonna displays on the track recalls singular classics like 'Express Yourself' and 'Like A Prayer,' and when the song weaves its way toward a throbbing drop, Madonna continues crooning, refusing to be relegated to the background.
Living For Love' sounds like a giddy combination of Madonna's past and present, and represents an encouraging sign for a 2015 project that was unexpectedly thrown into jeopardy at the end of 2014.
The songs will appear on the pop icon's first album in three years, 'Rebel Heart,' which comes out in March. The six tracks show Madonna going further in a hip-hop direction and include a collaboration with leading female rapper Nicki Minaj.
The Material Girl said she decided to put the songs on sale online after in-studio versions of her tracks dripped onto the Internet.
'I would prefer my fans to hear completed versions of some of the songs instead of the incomplete tracks that are circulating. Please consider these six songs as an early Christmas gift,' Madonna said in a statement.
Leaking has become an increasingly common problem for artists in an age where copying music takes little technical skill. Lady Gaga last year also released music early after leaks, while Beyonce avoided the problem by releasing an album with no prior publicity.
The new songs show Madonna - the creator of some of the most recognizable dance pop of the 1980s - further going into an R&B style, which she had touched on going as far back as 1989's 'Like a Prayer' and embraced on her 2008 album 'Hard Candy.'
One of the new songs, 'Living for Love,' merges elements from Madonna's career. Her vocals show clear R&B influence as a funky urban beat builds into club-packing house music. The song could be read as delving into Madonna's notoriously turbulent love life, with the anthem-like lyrics, 'Lifted me up, and watched me stumble / After the heartache, I'm gonna carry on.'
Madonna, whose purported romances have provided tabloid fodder since her eight-year marriage to British filmmaker Guy Ritchie ended in 2008, unleashes anger to an unnamed ex-lover in the evocatively titled 'Unapologetic Bitch.' As reggae guitars back up a hip-hop beat, Madonna blares: 'You know you never really knew how much you loved me until you lost me, did you? / You know you never really knew how much your selfish bullshit cost me? / Well, fuck you.'
Pursuing a lyrical theme, another song is called 'Bitch, I'm Madonna' as the 56-year-old pop icon raps with the younger Minaj in a hip-hop anthem on the joys of unabashed late-night partying.
Madonna shows her warmer side on the ballad 'Ghost Town' and goes in a completely different lyrical direction on "Illuminati," in which she plays on the 18th-century conspiracy theory of a global secret society. 'It's the Enlightenment that started it all / The Founding Fathers wrote it down on the wall / And now the media's misleading us all,' Madonna sings as she name-checks everyone from Steve Jobs to Queen Elizabeth II to ISIS.
The songs come after what had been a quiet 2014 for Madonna, who dropped off Forbes' annual list of the highest-earning female musicians after topping it a year earlier.
From AFP Via Yahoo! News
Song titles that are currently available from the new album are Living For Love, Devil Pray, Ghosttown, Unapologetic Bitch, Illuminati and Bitch I'm Madonna which was recorded with Nicki Minaj. Producers include Madonna, Diplo, Kanye West, Billboard, was recorded in NY, LA and London.
The decision to release the songs much earlier than anticipated was due to the leaking of several work-in-progress demos earlier this week.
'I was hoping to release my new single 'Living For Love' on Valentine's Day with the rest of the album coming in the Spring. I would prefer my fans to hear completed versions of some of the songs instead of the incomplete tracks that are circulating. Please consider these six songs as an early Christmas gift,' commented Madonna.
Pre-order at itunes.apple.com/gb/album/rebel-heart/ or via your local iTunes store.
What do you think of the tracks you have downloaded from Rebel Heart? Add your thoughts using the 'Comments' button below.
The singer has been working throughout 2014 on her next studio album, which has tentatively been titled Iconic on this unauthorised leak.A total of 11 tracks have surfaced, including previously confirmed songs 'Rebel Heart', 'Bitch I'm Madonna', 'Joan of Arc' and 'Make the Devil Pray'.
Madonna has yet to announce an official title or release date for the album, which wasn't expected to be available legally to fans for some months yet.
The star has worked with a range of songwriters and producers for the album, including Diplo, Avicii, Natalia Kills and Ryan Tedder.
From Digital Spy
Madonna herself has commented on her Instagram page with the message: 'Thank you for not listening! Thank you for your loyalty! Thank you for waiting and if you have heard please know they are unfinished demos stolen long ago and not ready to be presented to the world.'
Later on Madonna also posted on Instagram: 'This is artistic rape!! These are early leaked demo's half of which wont even make it on my album the other half have changed and evolved. This is a form of terrorism. Wtf!!!! Why do people want to destroy artistic process??? Why steal? Why not give me the opportunity to finish and give you my very best?'
The lead singer from the pop-rock group has been drafted in to write tracks for the Material Girl’s new album, which will be released in 2015.
'It’s her best stuff in over a decade - it’s really strong,' he told the Daily Mirror.
But the 35-year-old musician added: 'The tracks I’ve done with her are really hard to explain.'
Ryan, who performed at Capital’s Jingle Bell Ball on December 6, has composed songs for the likes of One Direction, Leona Lewis and Ella Henderson.
Madonna has also teamed up with Avicii, and their track Rebel Heart was leaked online with another song, Wash Over Me. The singer admitted the breach of privacy 'broke her heart'.
And Ryan revealed his concerns that the leaked tracks could have been his collaborations with her.
'I was actually working on something with Madonna when her tracks leaked,' he said. 'So I panicked because I thought it was the song I was working on, but luckily it wasn’t. People have way too much time on their hands.'
On Nov. 27, a snippet of a new Madonna song called 'Rebel Heart' leaked to the Internet. A day later, a full-length version of the tune had made its way to the Web, as well as another full track, seemingly titled 'Wash All Over Me.'
'Rebel Heart' is likely a co-production with superstar DJ/producer Avicii, who Madonna worked with earlier in the year on new music. (Madonna posted an image of her with Avicii in a recording studio, using the hash tag #RebelHeart.) Both songs could be unfinished, or demo versions.
Madonna's publicist had no comment about the initial leak, though the diva's manager, Guy Oseary, Tweeted: 'I would be grateful to any Madonna fans that can assist us in finding those responsible for the leak. We appreciate your help.'
Madonna has been working on new music throughout 2014, often updating her Instagram feed with photos and messages regarding her progress. A new album from the entertainer is expected in 2015. It will be her first studio effort since 2012's MDNA, which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart.
The American hitmaker has worked with music's biggest stars throughout his illustrious career, including Pharrell Williams, Daft Punk and Duran Duran.
However, it is only Madonna's advice that he always blindly listens to.
'Do as Madonna says,' Nile stated to Q magazine as one of his golden rules for life. 'When I did Like a Virgin, I thought Material Girl was the best song to lead with. Madonna was convinced it was Like a Virgin. But I was like, 'Material Girl's ten times better.''
'She taught me that it was about being a girl, losing your virginity, and how relevant a lyric like that would be. Sometimes there's an intellectual component to a record that can trump its primal component.'
While Nile is a star in his own right thanks to his disco funk band Chic, his talents are often called upon by other music stars. Never one to say no, the 62-year-old loves sharing his pearls of wisdom with both budding and established artists.
'Help your fellow musicians. I believe in giving back as much help to musicians as possible. Recording with Daft Punk, we were in the same studio we did the first Chic single. They went, 'How did you make Chic records?' So I taught them the technique. We came up with Get Lucky, then Lose Yourself to Dance and Give Life Back to Music in minutes. All three songs were finished in one day,' he smiled.
From Yahoo! News
Arguably still her most famous song, 'Like a Virgin' is now a staple at wedding receptions, on the airwaves and on lists of controversial moments in popular culture. But you're much less likely to see Madonna perform a standard rendition of the classic today. Most of her tours have featured a remastered version, which means we've heard several wildly different iterations of the pop standard. Here's how 'Like a Virgin' has evolved in the 30 years since it was released:
To read the rest of the article and view the performances visit: www.huffingtonpost.com
What is your favourite live performance of 'Like A Virgin'? Add your thoughts using the 'Comments' button below.
Here is madonnalicious' copy of the 'Like a Virgin' single, bought with my pocket money 30 years ago in Woolworths!
Sister Cristina Scuccia, the singing Sicilian nun who triumphed earlier this year in The Voice of Italy talent show, is about to release her first album. It includes a cover of Madonna’s pop classic Like A Virgin.
'I chose it myself. Without any desire to provoke or scandalise,' Scuccia, 26, told the Catholic newspaper Avvenire.
'If you read the lyrics without being influenced by what has gone before, you discover that it is a song about the capacity of love to make people new again. To release them from their past. And this is how I wanted to interpret it. That’s why we’ve transformed it from the pop-dance track it was into a romantic ballad a bit in the style of [US singer-songwriter] Amos Lee.'
The result, she said, was more of 'a secular prayer than a pop song'.
Scuccia strode into the public spotlight in flat shoes and her black habit in March when she auditioned before stunned judges on the Italian show. She went on to win, reciting the Lord’s prayer at the final in June, and to sign a contract with Universal for the album due out next month.
Scuccia’s version of Like A Virgin is one of its singles. But neither the track nor the video bears much resemblance to the 1984 hit, for which Madonna gallivanted around Venice, contorting her petite frame under bridges and cavorting with a lion.
In a nod to the original, Scuccia is also pictured in Venice for her video, but wears a habit and crucifix throughout and refrains from reclining on boats.
A few of the lyrics have been modified slightly or left out entirely. For example, 'Gonna give you all my love, boy' is shortened to exclude the last word.
'They need something edgy. They need songwriting,' he said. 'She can’t just have her Avicii, her producers or whatever, come up with a new techno jam for her to gyrate to and pretend that she’s 20 years old. They actually need songs. I’m partly responsible for that return-to-values thing.' (Watch out, Diplo and Blood Diamonds!)
That said, he doesn't sound like he's fallen under her spell. 'I guess it’s called ‘throwback’, but the first record was so good because of the songs,' he said. 'It's been a downward slide [since]. Ray of Light is not cool. And all the other stuff she’s done after that, it’s not like it matters. It really shows a drain of values. People need more substance in their mac-and-cheese. People need more sugar or something.'
It's worth pointing out that dozens of songwriters are asked to write for artists as big as Madonna, so it's entirely possible Pink's contributions will never come to light. (Or that after reading this interview, Madonna will wave her hand and have him thrown to the dogs.)
It's also worth noting that Pink covered 'Everybody' for 2007's Through the Wilderness, a Madonna tribute album. And which Madonna record is 'Everybody' from? Her first one! He's not just being retroactively selective with his tastes, then. Come on, Ariel, you don't even like 'Like a Prayer'?
Guy Oseary, Madonna's manager, has denied Pink's claims on his Twitter saying that Madonna and him have never heard of Ariel Pink. The label may have reached out but M has no interest in working with mermaids.'
The 19-year-old singer/songwriter has teamed up with the music legend on a song for her upcoming new album and admits the 56-year-old star gave him plenty of advice about how to look after his vocal chords.
He exclusively told BANG Showbiz: 'She's really cool. So lovely and very motherly. She gave me a bag full of lemons and Throat Coat tea bags. They're pretty amazing.'
MNEK is set to perform at a new music initiative, MUSIC CUBE, at shopping centre Westfield London, west London, alongside Neon Jungle later this month, and the star insists it is important for new platforms to be created to promote live music for up-and-coming talent.
MNEK and Neon Jungle will take to the stage in a bespoke soundproof glass cube at MUSIC CUBE, which is exclusive to Westfield London (October 24-26) and Westfield Stratford City (October 31-November 2).
From Yahoo! News
While Madonna certainly didn't lack for fame in 1994, the button-pushing Erotica album had soured many critics and fans. For the first time in a decade of superstardom, people weren't shocked by her antics anymore - even worse, they often seemed exhausted by her.
Artistically speaking, she'd spent the last four years challenging and subverting America's sexual puritanism. But after releasing an entire book called Sex featuring nude pictures of herself and other celebrities, there didn't seem to be anywhere else to go in that realm.
It didn't help that she'd detonated 14 F-bombs on a March 1994 episode of The Late Show With David Letterman, an infamous appearance that racked up FCC complaints and distanced her from Middle America. Evita was two years away and the overt sexuality of Erotica was growing stale - so when Bedtime Stories hit, Madonna's career was at a strange point.
To that end, Bedtime Stories is lyrically and musically a much warmer album. She sacrifices some bawdy entendres (compare Erotica's 'Where Life Begins' to Bedtime's 'Inside of Me') and focuses on autobiographical matter.
Instead of Erotica's chilly, pounding dance pop, Bedtime puts Madonna in softer sonic territory. There's the singer-songwriter-y 'Secret,' the avant pop of 'Bedtime Story' (co-written by Bjork), the new jack swing jam 'I'd Rather Be Your Lover' (featuring Meshell Ndegeocello rapping), the Herbie Hancock-sampling ballad 'Sanctuary' and the lush, orchestral R&B of 'Take a Bow.'
But softer sounds didn't necessarily mean muted lyrics. 'Human Nature' finds Madonna taking on her critics more directly than ever with a logical, defiant attack on slut-shaming. And while album opener 'Survival' is a cozy R&B-pop song, it was similarly unrepentant in attitude.
The inviting R&B sound of Bedtime Stories is due in part to co-producer Dallas Austin, who longtime Madonna backup singer Donna de Lory describes as 'part of her tribe at that time.' Also on board were co-producers Nellee Hooper, Dave 'Jam' Hall (hot off Mary J. Blige's debut, What's the 411?) and, of course, Kenneth 'Babyface' Edmonds.
To read the rest of the article visit www.billboard.com/articles
The British singer-songwriter has been in the studio with the US icon to work on a track for her forthcoming new album, which is due out in 2015.
'I almost get quite scared talking about it,' MNEK told Digital Spy at the MOBO Awards launch. 'It's happened, obviously. I did meet Madonna and I did work with her.'
'It was great and amazing. The song sounds wicked - I'm really proud of it. Diplo's dope, Madonna's dope, her people are great and that side of things is working out great.'
MNEK is nominated for Best Newcomer at the MOBO Awards 2014, with Sam Smith and Krept & Konan leading this year's list.
From Digital Spy
The diva posted an Instagram photo on Saturday of DJ Dahi and Blood Diamonds working behind a computer, with the caption, 'Nothing can stop the Sex Boyzzzzzz!'
DJ Dahi is the producer behind Drake’s 'Worst Behavior,' and has worked with other artists like Kendrick Lamar and Lily Allen. Pop act Blood Diamonds (aka Mike Diamond) is a frequent collaborator with Grimes.
Madonna has also been working with super-producer Diplo, who has turned up in multiple photos on her Instagram account. In his Billboard magazine cover feature, Diplo said that he's had multiple studio sessions with Madonna that have resulted in at least three 'amazing, smashes.'
The diva's next as-yet untitled album will be released in 2015 on Interscope Records. Her last release, 2012's MDNA, debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart.
Based on a glance at Madonna’s Instagram feed, the set may also feature collaborations with Toby Gad, MoZella, S1, Ariel Rechtshaid, Avicii, Natalia Kills and Martin Kierszenbaum.
Among those she's working with is super-producer Diplo, who has turned up in multiple photos on the diva's Instagram account. It's unclear if Diplo (who recently graced the cover of Billboard magazine) is materializing as the album's primary producer, but it would seem that he could play a significant role in the project.
When asked specifically about Diplo and his involvement in the album, Madonna's manager Guy Oseary told Billboard, 'She's currently in the studio with Diplo and having a lot of fun,' but didn't offer any further clues about the project. Alas.
In his Billboard magazine cover feature, Diplo said that he's had multiple studio sessions with Madonna that have resulted in at least three 'amazing, smashes.' 'I got really lucky because she's been really understanding and open to my ideas. And she's like, 'I hate sleeping....''
Madonna's next album is due out on Interscope Records, and - based on a glance at her Instagram feed - may also feature collaborations with Toby Gad, MoZella, S1, Ariel Rechtshaid, Avicii, Natalia Kills and Martin Kierszenbaum. On last week’s Pop Shop Podcast, Kierszenbaum - the head of Cherrytree Records who also records as Cherry Cherry Boom Boom - told Billboard that he was 'very proud' of the work he completed with Madonna in the studio.
'It was a real privilege to write with Madonna, and with Natalia Kills,' said Kierszenbaum. 'We ended up writing about seven songs. We were meant to only be there with her for a couple of days, but we really distilled it down to a very traditional writing session. It was just me on the piano, and Madonna and Natalia Kills around it, and we just wrote songs the old-fashioned way, just playing the piano and singing. .... I don’t know what she’s gonna use from the sessions, but it was a tremendous honor.'
Madonna’s last release, 2012's MDNA, debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart - her fifth consecutive No. 1 studio album and her eighth chart-topper overall.
What are your thoughts? Real or not? And who could these songs be about?!
'Cut me down the middle, f***ed me up a little. You said I was your queen. I tried to give you everything. And now you want your freedom.'
'You got just what you came for, a bit of fame and fortune, and I'm no longer needed.'
'You tore me into pieces, you didn't have no damn reason. I let you in my kingdom, you helped yourself with everything.'
'I curse the day we met. This memory is haunting me. I wish I could forget.'
'Two Steps Behind Me'
'You're a copycat, Where is my royalty? You're a pretty girl, I'll give you that. But stealing my recipe, it's an ugly look.'
'Did you study me hard enough? You're never gonna be, you're just a wannabe me. Like a sister all messed-up, who's gonna help you out? In your fantasy, you can try it all. But you can't be me.'
'You can walk the walk, even talk the talk. But you'll always be two steps behind me.'
The DJ and producer was enlisted by the Queen of Pop earlier this year as she worked on new material.
Speaking to Billboard, Diplo said that the duo ended up getting drunk in the recording studio whilst writing.
He said: 'One [song] is super weird. Late one night in the studio we got a little bit drunk and she improvised a little hook and we made a song out of it. I think it’s going to be a breakthrough if she can manage to get everything together and get it out properly.'
Talking meanwhile about another track they wrote together, Diplo said:
'That song is on like version 20. It went from a piano ballad to a 'Turn Down for What'-style song, which I didn’t like. Now it’s somewhere in the middle.'
Yesterday two full tracks purporting to be Erotica outtakes were posted on Soundcloud:
'You Are the One' exemplifies the club-pop approach of her early-’90s recordings, with a bubblegum vocal part over a organ-driven Shep Pettibone house beat and a post-acid-house bass line.
'Shame' is a relatively serious song with a self-empowerment hook seemingly intended to repeat the success of 'Express Yourself' from her previous album, and would have fit in with Erotica‘s political streak. It may have had a better chance of making the album if it had been kicked up a few BPM.
Madonna’s people have done a fairly good job of keeping the Rain tapes off the Internet so far—but this apparent leak of two complete tracks suggests that the rest of it may make it online before too long.
From Entertainment Weekly
Madge sang new vocals for 'La Isla Bonita,' changing the lyrics to, 'Last night I dreamt of Major Lazer' (which is one of Diplo's side projects). Diplo showed off the recording on an episode of the British series 'Superstar DJs,' which premieres tomorrow on UK television Channel 4.
When he plays the track for host Annie Mac, she understandably loses it. Apparently being a 'slave driver' while working on her new album is the best way to win her respect.
Diplo isn't the only one manning the boards on Madge's latest. She also hit the studio with Avicii back in March, which means her brand of dance-pop might be taking an EDM turn on her upcoming record.
The woman who has always been above social media has been having a torrid affair with it of late. 2014 shall forever be known by this fan as the year the Material Girl embraced Instagram and treated us to everything from gratuitous boob selfies to her homage to hairy underarms. And I’ve loved it. Through her iPhone Madonna let us behind the platinum curtain - even inside her very posh Upper East Side Manhattan master bathroom to witness everything form her post work-out beads of sweat to her son David Banda on guitar.
Yet of most fascination has been the cheeky way she has beckoned us inside the recording studio. The Queen of Pop has been teasing the world with progress of her as-yet-untitled (unless it’s called Unapologetic Bitch – and Lord don’t I hope so!) 13th studio album.
The list of potential collaborators is so far impressive: Sky Ferreira/Haim producer Ariel Rechtshaid, Wrecking Ball co-writer MoZella, MIA collaborator Diplo, DJ/producer Avicii, former Lady Gaga collaborator Martin Kierszenbaum, pop singer Natalia Kills, US hit-maker Toby Gad.
The imagery teased out recently is also exciting: Homage to Betty Page, mysterious veils and religious imagery? Check. But there’s also some cause for concern. Why? Because Madonna seems so close to getting it right. And we all know what happens when Madonna gets it slightly wrong. Two words: Hard Candy.
Some might argue her last studio album MDNA was a disappointment. I actually loved many moments on the album but there was a sense, right before the album dropped, that something was out of alignment.
It’s hard to pinpoint what was missing. The world was hungry for Madonna’s ‘A’ game. The reality is, we got glimpses of it. William Orbit suggested in retrospect that M was pulled in too many directions to really focus on making the record the brilliant return to form that songs like Gang Bang and Addicted promised it could be.
She had a clothing line, a world tour, a film and a perfume to promote. Music - the source of all her power - had been relegated to a mere portion of her time, a part-time job and unfortunately something had to give.
I assume it was the laser focus on the dance floor that lost out in the end, and the project suffered.
Thankfully the accompanying tour did not. We witnessed Madonna in her full prime, mercilessly slaying audiences with her bold confidence and celebrating dance at the centre of her circus. Yet when the confetti cleared there was the sense that the Madonna train had passed through town without a trace. The era, like Hard Candy, didn’t seem to permeate the zeitgeist the way Confessions on a Dancefloor had a few years before.
To read the rest of the article visit: http://attitude.co.uk
The Queen of Pop has been busy for a number of months working on new material as she follows up her 2012 album 'MDNA'.
One of her collaborators was revealed to be DJ and producer Diplo, who has now told Heloisa Tolipan that their sessions were extremely fruitful.
He said: 'I met Madonna because of her kids and then she invited me to a party. We ended up writing seven songs together. I do not usually feel pressured to write hits, but when it's an artist of this calibre, it's obvious that I want to push the boundaries a little bit further and surpass myself. One of the songs we wrote is very cool and is called 'Bitch, I'm Madonna'.'
Other artists Madonna has worked with on her new album sessions include Avicii and Natalia Kills.
The Queen of Pop hung out the Brits earlier this month in the US, updating her Instagram with images of the hitmakers.
This led some eager minds into speculating that they were working with Madonna on her upcoming album.
However, Disclosure told Billboard that talk of them producing her record is wide of the mark. Howard Lawrence said:
'She came to our gig at Governors Ball and within a few hours, there were articles being written about how we were producing her album - and we had met her that day. How could we even have done that?'
Guy Lawrence meanwhile said that Madonna was 'really cool' and 'very chill'.
Madonna has been working on new material this year with a number of collaborators, such as Avicii and Diplo.
MTV UK: You mentioned Madonna; what’s one of your fondest memories of working on Like A Virgin with her?
Nile: That was really phenomenal. People don’t give Madonna the real respect and credit that’s due her, she absolutely is the single hardest working person I’ve ever worked with, and I’ve worked with literally hundreds of stars. Madonna shows up early, stays late, she’ll do every single task you want her to do and more. She’s the kind of person that you dream about. She brings the superstar thing and she brings a work ethic unlike anything you’ve ever seen. For me it’s like a dream come true. Probably one of the easiest records of my life I’ve ever made.
MTV UK: Who do you want to work with next?
Nile: That’s really impossible to say, because there are so many people I’m already working with and I like working with them so much that I continue working with them, like Pharrell and Disclosure, Sam Smith and Avicii.
Avicii to me is like my little brother, he’s one of the best composers that I’ve ever worked with, and Tim and I always make jokes that we wake up in the morning, we go into the studio and by nine, ten o’clock at night we have six songs. He’s already cut like 60-something songs for his next album, we were just together last week and he says, ‘Nile I’ve culled it down to 36!’ and then he says ‘Lets go write some more!’ I love people like that.
To read the rest of the interview visit www.mtv.co.uk
The Queen of Pop shared an image on Instagram late in the evening on Wednesday with the caption 'Working the midnight shift with Natalia Kills. 2 girls on a couch… don't it taste like Holy Water? #artforfreedom #rebelheart #revolutionoflove'
In the photo, Madonna is sitting with pop singer/songwriter Kills, in front of two microphones. In the foreground is Martin Kierszenbaum, the founder and chairman of Cherrytree Records (Kills' label) and senior executive of A&R for Interscope Records.
Among his many credits, Kierszenbaum A&R'd Lady Gaga's debut album 'The Fame,' and co-wrote and produced four of the songs on the set. He also did A&R for Gaga's 'The Fame Monster' EP.
The latter cut was the lead single and title track from Madonna's 1989 album, which now celebrates its 25th anniversary. It was released by Sire/Warner Bros. Records on March 21, 1989, and shot to No. 1 on the Billboard 200 shortly thereafter. It spent six weeks atop the chart - her longest run at No. 1 for any album.
To celebrate a quarter century of 'Like a Prayer,' Billboard spoke to Leonard - the primary co-writer and co-producer of the set - to discuss the making of the album and his recollections of working with Madonna. (Would you believe 'Like a Prayer' was written in one day? And the entire album was written in less than two weeks?)
In our lengthy chat, we discuss everything from where Prince pops up on the album (it might surprise you), to Leonard's all-time favorite song they did together. Not to mention those rumors that he's working with Madonna on her next album.
To read the full interview visit www.billboard.com/patrick-leonard-talks-like-a-prayer-at-25
Recorded amid the dissolution of her marriage to actor Sean Penn, 'Like a Prayer' was Madonna’s most introspective and eclectic album to date. Unlike the three that came before, it blended classic psychedelic rock with then-current synth-pop sounds. And now, a quarter-century after its March 21, 1989 release, it doesn’t sound a bit dated. Lyrically, it’s about growing up, moving on from bad romance, and getting right with God and family. At least two of the songs center on the death of Madonna’s mother, a childhood trauma that had a strong part in making the singer who she is.
Before 'Like a Prayer' was even released, Madonna made it clear this wouldn’t be just another album. Three weeks before the release, she debuted the video for the title track, the first of five top 20 Hot 100 singles spawned from the album. Featuring depictions of murder, interracial love, and cross burnings, the clip juxtaposed notions of religious and sexual ecstasy, leaving some folks puzzled and just about everyone talking. Catholics denounced her; Pepsi dropped ads featuring her (and ended plans to sponsor her tour). Fans, of course, ate it up.
Controversy aside, 'Like a Prayer' is among Madonna’s finest moments, and over the next 10 tracks, its namesake album never lets up. It’s funky, poignant, and even a little kooky. And while Madonna is the quintessential singles artist, this chart-topping LP stands as one of her most fully realized collection of songs. Read on for our classic track-by-track review.
To read Billboard's track-by-track review visit: www.billboard.com/articles/review