On December 12 1986, Open Your Heart was released in North America as the fourth single from True Blue. The song was written by Madonna, Gardner Cole & Peter Rafelson and produced by Madonna & Patrick Leonard.
The single’s worldwide b-side, White Heat, an album track from True Blue, developed a relatively high profile due to its inclusion as the flip-side to two of Madonna’s #1 hits–the aforementioned Open Your Heart and 1987’s Who’s That Girl, released only six months apart. Gaining further exposure as a set-list staple during the Who’s That Girl Tour, the live performance of White Heat foreshadowed some of the dramatic elements that Madonna would expand upon in future tours.
White Heat’s original submission for copyright was registered to Madonna & Leonard under the working title Get Up, Stand Tall with a 1985 date of creation. Notes from the registration on file also list the title Dangerous–but it is likely just another working title that was being considered rather than a separate recording. White Heat is thought to have been among the earliest songwriting collaborations between Madonna & Leonard to be completed, coming shortly after their first composition, Love Makes The World Go Round, surfaced during Live Aid in the summer of 1985. The sequence of the registration numbers for the two songs suggests that they may they have been completed within a month or two of each other. Madonna’s version of Open Your Heart (which she revised from the Cole/Rafelson demo) is also thought to have been recorded with Leonard during the same time period.
The liner notes of True Blue dedicated White Heat to actor James Cagney, who in 1949 played ruthless, deranged gang leader Arthur “Cody” Jarrett in the Warner Brothers film, White Heat. Several clips of Cagney’s dialogue from the original motion picture were used in the song for dramatic effect.
On March 4 1996, Madonna’s Love Don’t Live Here Anymore music video was shot at the Confitería El Molino in Buenos Aires, Argentina, during her day off from filming Evita.
The music video was directed by Jean-Baptiste Mondino, who worked with Madonna on her videos for Open Your Heart, Justify My Love and Human Nature.
Love Don’t Live Here Anymore was released as the fourth single from the Something to Remember ballads collection.
In her Evita diaries, published by Vanity Fair magazine in 1996, Madonna made reference to the video shoot:
“There are no words to describe the weariness I feel today. I have not slept well in days, and when I do, there is no comfort. My dreams are violent and full of betrayal. Like my life, there’s no escape. I feel the responsibility of this film. I cannot talk about Evita and her life without defending myself … Dear God, what have I gotten myself into? What is happening to me? Today we went to shoot a music video for my next song. But I kept forgetting the lyrics, and felt like crying each and every time I did it. It was so frustrating. It’s my own song!”
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 July 11 1987, Madonna’s True Blue album was certified 5x platinum (5 million units) in the USA. The album went on to sell an estimated 19 million units worldwide.
On June 30 1986, Madonna’s True Blue album was released by Sire Records. She worked with Stephen Bray and Patrick Leonard on the album while co-writing and co-producing all the songs.
True Blue was an immediate global success, reaching number one in then record-breaking 28 countries across the world, including Australia, Canada, France, Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States. It spent 34 consecutive weeks at the top of the European Top 100 Albums chart, longer than any other album in history. It became the world’s top-selling album of 1986, as well the biggest selling album of the 1980s by a woman and remains one of the best-selling albums of all time with sales of more than 25 million copies worldwide. All five singles released from the album reached the top five on theBillboard Hot 100, with Live to Tell, Papa Don’t Preach, and Open Your Heart peaking at number one.
On April 20 2010, The Power of Madonna – Glee episode (Season 1, Episode 15) aired on the Fox network.
When cheerleading coach Sue Sylvester (Jane Lynch) demands that Madonna’s music be played over the school intercom system, Glee club director Will Schuester (Matthew Morrison) sets the club a Madonna-themed assignment, hoping to empower the female club members.
Glee: The Music, The Power of Madonna, an EP containing studio recordings of songs performed in the episode, was released on April 20, 2010. Its tracklist includes Express Yourself, a mash-up of Borderline and Open Your Heart, Vogue, Like A Virgin, 4 Minutes, What it Feels Like for a Girl, and Like a Prayer.
The iTunes edition features a bonus track, Burning Up, which was not performed in the episode.
Lynch received the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series for her performance in the episode.