On November 25 1995, Madonna’s greatest ballads collection, Something To Remember, hit #6 on the Billboard Top 200 albums chart in the USA.
Madonna worked with David Foster on two of the three new songs for the collection: You’ll See and One More Chance.
Foster had this to say about working with Madonna:
“She had an amazing work ethic. She was on time every day and was really co-producing the songs with me. A lot of artists want to produce just because they can, and they don’t do a thing for the credit, which I really hate. But Madonna worked as hard as any producer I know … I liked the whole experience of working with her—the punctuality, the professionalism, and the sexiness.”
On October 21 1995, the music video for I Want You by Madonna with Massive Attack hit #11 on VH1’s weekly chart in the U.S.
The video for I Want You is somewhat of an anomaly in Madonna’s career. The song was initially intended to be a joint release to promote both Inner City Blues (a Marvin Gaye tribute album on Motown Records) and Madonna’s own Something To Remember ballads collection on Sire/Maverick. Naturally, a music video was commissioned to accompany the planned single.
Unfortunately, legal wranglings between the two record companies ensued when Motown insisted on releasing the tribute album ahead of Madonna’s album. Concerned that the move could negatively impact sales of Something To Remember, Madonna’s label apparently backed away from plans to fully promote I Want You.
Fortunately for fans, the song’s excellent music video, which had already been completed by director Earle Sebastian, was not shelved. It was serviced to video channels ahead of the release of both albums and received moderate support despite the song’s absence from radio.
The video quickly faded into obscurity, however, once Madonna’s You’ll See single and its accompanying video were given a full promotional push from her label less than a month later.
On May 6 1995, the first of a two-day shoot for the music video for Human Nature took place at Raleigh Studios in Hollywood, California.
The video was directed by Jean-Baptiste Mondino while the work of S&M comic artist Eric Stanton provided inspiration.
Mondino found this book by this illustrator named Stanton who did kinda S&M drawings and stuff, but we didn’t want to go with the straight S&M; we wanted to have it be more about making fun of it.” – Madonna
All I know is…my main problem is I don’t like videos when somebody’s dancing, that the camera is moving a lot. I’m more like an old-time, classic guy, because I remember most of the video you had shot with the crane, some Steadicam, plus some panning. So you have about five different cameras shooting a performance, and after they edit like crazy. It gives you a lot of freedom, but I feel very frustrated because I like to see somebody dancing. I hate when there’s too much editing. I like the steadiness of the performance because then you can really enjoy the movement of the body. You see the skill. I like to shrink — as much as I can — the stage because I can grab her. If not, everyone is running around and I’m not good with this. So I came up with the boxes [laughs] and I knew that with the boxes I had to do with something quite un-expect-able because there’s not too much stage to dance in. So there’s something beautiful about it and they looked like bees or something. And the rest of it was how to create some kind of choreography and some graphic imagery with the S&M outfits, but with humor. So she has a little dog and she has some funny moments where she drops down, there’s some Charlie Chaplin-esque moments into in it. Because S&M is a game, you know? It’s dark, it looks dark, but I think people have fun. When you wear rubber like this, you better have fun. If not, you stop using it for sex and you become a diver, you know?” – Jean-Baptiste Mondino
On April 29, 1995, Bedtime Story peaked at #42 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the U.S.
Released as the follow-up to the longest-running U.S. #1 single of her career (Take A Bow), Madonna & Warner Bros. likely hoped that the momentum would carry over to the cutting-edge Björk penned title track. Despite a respectable reception in Europe (in the U.K. it performed better than Take A Bow) and significant buzz generated by its music video, Bedtime Story proved to be too unconventional for radio in North America, where it became her first fully promoted single to miss the Top 40 since Burning Up in 1983. It fared no better in Canada, peaking at #46 on May 1st, 1995.
The remixes for Bedtime Story, however, were a hit with North American D.J.’s and earned Madonna another #1 on Billboard’s Hot Dance/Club Play chart.
On March 10 1995, Madonna’s luscious Bedtime Story music video was given a cinematic release at three different Odeon Cineplex film theatres:
- Santa Monica, California (Broadway Cinemas)
- Manhattan, New York (Chelsea Theater)
- Chicago, Illinois (Biograph Threater)
The one week engagement allowed attendees to enjoy the Mark Romanek directed masterpiece on the big screen for a week before the video was released on MTV.
Madonna later celebrated the premiere of Bedtime Story video by throwing a Pajama Party at Webster Hall in New York, on March 18, 1995.