Monday, September 28, 2009

It's A Celebration

“34 songs that changed the world” is the tag line to Madonna new Greatest Hits compilation coming out September 29th. Not sure if all those songs changed the world but Madonna did change the face of pop music and became the blueprint to many wannabe Diva’s and female singers.

I still remember Holiday rising up the Billboard Charts in 1983 and peaking at #16. I thought she was black because of Shannon's hit Let The Music Play which was out at the same time, the songs to me sounded similar and I knew Shannon’s was black so I assumed so was she. When Madonna released her next song Borderline I was shocked to see a blonde white woman in the video. Borderline was her first top ten hit on the Billboard Hot 100 and it just got better, by the time Lucky Star went top 5 they had to shelve her next album to let her first one run its course.

Like A Virgin exploded onto the scene in my graduating year of High School, I was completely hooked. The album produced 4 top 5 single, plus hits from elsewhere like the #1 movie tracks Crazy For You and my favorite dance song Into The Groove. Her Icon status was cemented with albums like True Blue which produced 5 top 5 singles and my favorite album Like A Prayer. Her songs like Express Yourself, La Isla Bonita, and Papa Don’t Preach were Iconic. Madonna could dance but could also write powerful songs with an emotional message like Live To Tell or Oh Father. She finished the 80’s with the gay dance anthem Vogue, a song that today still gets everybody on the dance floor. Her videos were groundbreaking and breathtaking and her concerts like the Blond Ambition tour were a spectacle. She pushed sexuality to the forefront but not as a victim but as a powerful woman in control of her sexuality.

Madonna was definitely my pop goddess but by the 90’s she started getting too serious artistically and lose the carefree attitude she had. I found it hard supporting an artist that charges $400 a ticket. $32.50 in 1987 to see her Who’s That Girl tour does not equal $400 in 2009. Her Erotica album was OK but I never really liked Bedtime Stories. I became interested again with her 90’s opus Ray Of Light produced by William Orbit, by then it was hit or miss depending on which producer and songwriters she would use. Her best material in my opinion was in the 80’s with songwriters Stephen Bray and Patrick Leonard. I never liked French remixer Mirwais’s production on albums like Music and American Life. 2006 Confession On A Dancefloor produced by Stuart Price was a step in the right direction and a return to her past.

Madonna has ended her long contract with Warner music, her last studio album Hard Candy with Justin Timberlake and Timbaland came in with mixed review by critic and fans. While It’s not her best I thought it was better then some of her 90’s output. Celebration a 2 CD set is her last contractual album with Warner and I don’t envy the producers or management who had to decide which songs would make the final cut. Madonna fans have been bitching for years complaining about tracks that have been omitted from her previous compilations The Immaculate Collection and GHV2. She has sixty eight top 40 hits in the UK, forty eight in the USA, thirty seven have made the top 10 on the Billboard Hot 100, and twelve made it to # 1. Forty of her songs have topped the Billboard’s Hot Dance Club Songs Chart, the most by any artist ever. Let’s not start about which remix or edit of a particular song should be used. The fight about album version versus remixed 12”/dance version/extra beats, has been going on since Shep Pettibone remixed the entire Immaculate Collection CD.

Just as impressive if not more a DVD collection with 47 of her videos will also hit the store shelves. Did your favorite song, video and mix make the final cut?


01 Hung Up (Album Version) 5:36
02 Music (Album Version) 3:45
03 Vogue (Immaculate Collection Version) 5:16
04 4 Minutes (Radio Edit) 3:09
05 Holiday (Album Version) 6:08
06 Everybody (7" Edit) 4:11
07 Like A Virgin (Immaculate Collection Version) 3:09
08 Into The Groove (Album Version) 4:45
09 Like A Prayer (Album Version) 5:42
10 Ray Of Light (Radio Edit) 4:33
11 Sorry (Radio Edit) 3:58
12 Express Yourself (Immaculate Collection Version) 3:59
13 Open Your Heart (Immaculate Collection Version) 3:49
14 Borderline (Immaculate Collection Version) 3:58
15 Secret (Radio Edit) 4:28
16 Erotica (Radio Edit) 4:30
17 Justify My Love (Album Version) 4:54
18 Revolver 3:40


01 Dress You Up (Album Version) 4:02
02 Material Girl (Album Version) 4:00
03 La Isla Bonita (Album Version) 4:02
04 Papa Don't Preach (Album Version) 4:29
05 Lucky Star (Immaculate Collection Version) 3:39
06 Burning Up (Album/Video Version) 3:42
07 Crazy For You (Immaculate Collection Version) 3:44
08 Who's That Girl (Album Version) 3:58
09 Frozen (Album Version) 6:18
10 Miles Away (Radio Edit) 3:43
11 Take A Bow (Album Version) 5:20
12 Live To Tell (Album Version) 5:51
13 Beautiful Stranger (Album Version) 4:20
14 Hollywood (Album Version) 4:22
15 Die Another Day (Album Version) 4:36
16 Don't Tell Me (Radio Edit) 4:09
17 Cherish (Immaculate Collection Version) 3:50
18 Celebration 3:35

DVD Track Listing:

1) Burning Up
2) Lucky Star
3) Borderline
4) Like A Virgin
5) Material Girl
6) Crazy For You
7) Into The Groove
8) Live To Tell
9) Papa Don't Preach
10) True Blue
11) Open Your Heart
12) La Isla Bonita
13) Who's That Girl
14) Like A Prayer
15) Express Yourself
16) Cherish
17) Vogue
18) Justify My Love
19) Erotica
20) Deeper and Deeper
21) Rain
22) I'll Remember
23) Secret
24) Take A Bow
25) Bedtime Story
26) Human Nature
27) I Want You
28) You'll See
29) Frozen
30) Ray Of Light
31) The Power Of Good-Bye
32) Beautiful Stranger
33) American Pie
34) Music
35) Don't Tell Me
36) What It Feels Like For A Girl
37) Die Another Day
38) Hollywood
39) Love Profusion
40) Hung Up
41) Sorry
42) Get Together
43) Jump
44) 4 Minutes
45) Give It 2 Me
46) Miles Away
47) Celebration

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