On July 24 1999, Beautiful Stranger reached its peak position of #19 on the Billboard Hot 100. This was based on the strength of airplay alone, as Maverick Records opted to boost sales of the Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me soundtrack album by not releasing the song as a physical single in the US. Had it been issued commercially, it would have easily given Madonna another Top 10 hit. The single was released in most major markets outside the US including Canada, Europe, Australia and Japan.
On June 8 1999, Madonna’s Immaculate Collection video collection was released on DVD.
On May 1 1999, the music video for Madonna’s Beautiful Stranger was shot at Universal Studios in Universal City, California.
Beautiful Stranger was directed by Brett Ratner, and went on to win an MTV Video Music Award for Best Video from a Film.
During the week of March 27 1999, Madonna’s The Power Of Good-Bye spent a final week on Billboard’s Hot Adult Contemporary chart in the USA.
On February 13 1999, Madonna’s Nothing Really Matters single was reviewed by Billboard magazine.
The North American two-track single for Nothing Really Matters included the album version of To Have And Not To Hold as its b-side.
Prior to the release of the Ray Of Light album, it was reported that Madonna had fourteen tracks mastered but wanted to cut one, as she felt that thirteen was a lucky number. According to the article, Madonna’s final selection was between two songs: To Have And Not To Hold or Has To Be.
As we all know, Has To Be ended up being cut from the final track list (except in Japan, where it was included as a bonus track).
If you had to choose between including To Have And Not To Hold or Has To Be on Ray Of Light, which song would you include? Keep in mind, your selection should not simply be which individual track you prefer – Madonna would also have had to consider how her choice would affect the overall flow and emotional arc of the album, both musically and lyrically.
On January 2 1999, Madonna’s The Power Of Good-Bye single peaked at #14 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart in the USA.
Your heart is not open so I must go
The spell has been broken, I loved you so
Freedom comes when you learn to let go
Creation comes when you learn to say no
You were my lesson I had to learn
I was your fortress you had to burn
Pain is a warning that something’s wrong
I pray to God that it won’t be long
Do ya wanna go higher?