On March 3 2000, American Pie was released as a single in the UK. The cover of the Don McLean classic would hit number-one on the UK singles chart the following week.
A huge international hit, American Pie also topped the charts in Canada, Australia, Switzerland, Italy, Germany, Austria and Finland. In the U.S. the track was not released commercially in a strategic move designed to maximize sales of The Next Best Thing soundtrack, however it managed to reach number twenty-nine on the Hot 100 based on the strength of airplay alone.
On February 7 1987, Open Your Heart hit number-one on the Billboard Hot 100 in the U.S. The track was the 4th international single release from the True Blue album.
While the song has kept a relatively high-profile amongst Madonna’s hits through the years – having been included on the set-lists of four of her world tours (including her most recent MDNA Tour) and two of her greatest hits albums – the single attained only moderate success on the charts (by Madonna’s own standards) in most countries outside the U.S.
Open Your Heart peaked at number-eight in Canada; at number-six in Australia, Italy, Belgium and The Netherlands; and landed outside the top-ten in France (twenty-four), Switzerland (eleven), Germany (seventeen) and Austria (eighteen). It fared better in the UK, hitting number-four – and it achieved its highest European placement in Ireland, topping out at number-two.
On January 8 1983, Everybody peaked at number-three on the US Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart. It would remain locked in that position for three weeks before quickly descending. Then known as Hot Dance/Disco, it was Madonna’s first appearance on the chart that she continues to rule today, with a total of 43 number-one hits under her belt.
Long live the Dancing Queen!
On December 30 1989, Dear Jessie peaked at number-five on the UK singles chart. The track was released as the fourth single from Like A Prayer in Europe (with the exception of France which instead opted to service the North American/Japanese fourth single, Oh Father) and as the fifth single in Australia.
Dear Jessie was written and produced by Madonna and Patrick Leonard and was inspired by Leonard’s young daughter, Jessie, with whom Madonna had developed a special connection.
The psychedelia-infused reflection on childhood fantasy and innocence was particularly poignant within the context of the Like A Prayer album’s sequencing, with its segue into Oh Father offering a stark musical and emotional contrast that is perhaps one of the most effective in Madonna’s body of work.
On December 19 1987, Madonna’s haunting ballad The Look Of Love peaked at number nine on the UK Singles Chart. The third and final Madonna single from the Who’s That Girl soundtrack, it was released only in select European countries and in Japan.
The Look Of Love was written, produced and recorded by Madonna and Patrick Leonard during the second of a three-day studio session, with the title track of the soundtrack being written and recorded on the first day. Additional musicians were brought in for overdubs and mixing was completed for both tracks by the end of the third day.
Despite being a set-list staple on the Who’s That Girl tour – the song’s limited release, moderate chart success, along with the fact that it has not been included in any of Madonna’s subsequent retrospective collections has led to it being largely forgotten, although fans frequently cite it as an underrated gem.
In a 1991 interview with ICON magazine, background vocalist Niki Haris expressed fond memories of performing the track with Madonna during the 1987 tour:
“My favorite song ever to perform with Madonna was a song called The Look Of Love from the Who’s That Girl Tour [Niki sings: Nowhere to run, nowhere to hide…]. That is one of the greatest songs and Madonna sings it really great. That’s my favorite song of all time as far as singing with her.”
The single reached number six in Ireland, number eight in the Netherlands and number ten in Belgium, while it peaked outside the top-ten in Germany, Switzerland, France and Japan.
On December 3 2005, Confessions On A Dance Floor entered the Billboard 200 album chart at number-one with sales of of over 350,000. It was her third consecutive studio album to reach the top and her sixth chart-topping album overall in the US.
Internationally the album hit number-one in 40 countries, including Canada, the UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Poland, Brazil and Australia.
On November 28 2006, Jump peaked at #20 on the Austrian Ultratop 40 singles chart. The song was the fourth international single from Confessions On A Dance Floor.
The maxi-single featured remixes by Stuart Price (under the pseudonym Jacques Lu Cont), Axwell and Junior Sanchez; an Extended Album Version and Radio Edit (the US vinyl edition also added the “unmixed” Album Version); and a previously unreleased b-side, History, written and produced by Madonna & Stuart Price.
Recorded during the Confessions On A Dance Floor sessions, the released version of History was in actuality an uncredited Stuart Price remix of the otherwise shelved original production. An alternate version of the Price remix streamed on Madonna’s official website for a brief period but has yet to surface in quality above streaming grade. More of the song’s history came to light when an incomplete clip of the final non-remixed version, as well as several complete demo takes (featuring nixed chorus lyric “I thought that we were related” instead of “Defined by our greed and hatred”), leaked online in 2007 and 2008 respectively.
While the remix of History is a sparse and stripped-down slice of electro-house that recalls some of Stuart Price’s earlier solo work as Les Rythmes Digitales, the pulsating urgency of the original production with its heedfully hopeful bridge make it the more definitive rendering of the song.