Today in Madonna History: April 26, 2003

On April 26 2003, Madonna’s American Life single spent the first of two weeks at #1 on the Soundscan Canadian Singles chart.

American Life was the final two-track physical Madonna single issued by Warner Music Canada, while production of CD maxi-singles would continue domestically until the 2006 release of Jump.

Today in Madonna History: March 12, 2003

On March 12 2003, Warner Bros. issued a press release for Madonna’s American Life album:

A new Madonna album, American Life, has been set for a worldwide release on April 22nd.

The enduring icon’s first new collection of original material since 2000’s multi-platinum smash Music, American Life is being hailed as Madonna’s most accomplished, original and intensely personal album to date; a resonant and revealing emotional journey that marks a new highpoint in a career that has for all time redefined the expressive potential of contemporary music.

Recorded over a full year in London and Los Angeles, American Life, the artist’s tenth studio album, features eleven new Madonna compositions, including the title track and debut single, which ships to radio March 25th.

“All of these songs reflect my current state of mind. I feel like I have just woken up out of a dream. They range from dismay and anger to joy and certainty. Hopefully, I have taken the personal and made it universal,” stated Madonna regarding her new album which she wrote and produced with Mirwais Ahmadzai with whom she also collaborated on her previous release Music.

The American Life CD includes the title track, as well as the following songs: Hollywood, I’m So Stupid, Love Profusion, Nobody Knows Me, Nothing Fails, Intervention, X-Static Process, Mother & Father, Easy Ride, and Die Another Day, the hit theme song from the James Bond film of the same name.

The American Life single is also the subject of a brilliant new video from the pioneering multi-media visionary, an artist who single handedly invented the short music film medium. In a stunning collaboration with director Jonas Akerlund, American Life expresses a panoramic view of our culture and looming war through the view of a female superhero portrayed by Madonna set against a backdrop of current cultural obsessions. It’s a penetrating examination of our national psyche. The video is scheduled to air the first week in April.

Remixes of the American Life single by, among others, mega-hot hip hop diva Missy Elliott, Peter Rauhofer, Felix da Housecat and Maverick Records artist Paul Oakenfold will be available in various configurations over the next several months.

An extensive schedule of appearances, performances and special events has been set in conjunction with the release of American Life including an appearance on an episode of the hit NBC-TV comedy Will And Grace.

One of the most original and innovative artists of the modern era, Madonna has sold hundreds of millions of albums, topped charts across two decades, created an enormously influential body of work in video and film and stood at the forefront of socially conscious artists worldwide. With American Life, Madonna has once again reached deeply into her own life as the source and substance of her extraordinary artistry.

Today in Madonna History: January 7, 2004

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On January 7 2004, Rolling Stone magazine reviewed Madonna’s Remixed & Revisited EP:

Instead of the twenty-year retrospective originally planned for the holiday season, Madonna fans get a measly half-hour of mishmash marginalia. Of the four remixes from American Life, only one clicks: Headcleanr’s rock mix of Love Profusion, which replaces Mirwais’ electrofolk with Strokes-like guitars and drums that flatter an overlooked but fantastic song. The live medley of Like a Virgin and Hollywood, with Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera, falls flat without the infamous kisses, and the Gap commercial with Missy Elliott just sounds cheap and nasty. Your Honesty, an outtake from 1994’s Bedtime Stories, recalls the post-disco funkiness of Madonna’s 1983 debut. Bet it would’ve worked better in a box set. – Barry Walters

Today in Madonna History: August 4, 2002

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On August 4 2002, Madonna took delivery of a $40,000 Mini Cooper.

Workers at the Cowley car plant in Oxfordshire gave it the personal touch by signing their names on the underside of the chassis. A worker at the Mini Cooper car plant said: “We are all so proud that Madonna is such a big fan of the car. Everyone who worked on it left their signature, either inside or under the bonnet. If anyone doubted this was a classy car before, they can certainly think again now Madonna has bought one.”

A custom Mini Cooper later appeared in the American Life music video, and promotional mini versions (no pun intended) were distributed when the American Life album was released.

Today in Madonna History: April 5, 2003

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On April 5 2003, an Australian interview aired that demonstrated Madonna’s quick change of heart regarding the American Life music video.

During the interview with Richard Wilkins, the following dialog takes place:

Wilkins: “You’re going to get all sorts of criticism I think.”

Madonna: “Why. Tell me why!”

W: “People are going to say it’s inappropriate to show bombs going off and planes bombing people.”

M: “Why? That’s on the news every five minutes! I’m just using news footage that’s already been seen by everyone.”

W: “I’m suggesting that some people are going to think maybe it’s ill-timed.”

M: “But in a way it’s perfect timing, because it’s what we are experiencing right now – so, it’s American life. It’s very current and appropriate I think.”

Wilkins may have convinced Madonna to go cold on the idea.

“Maybe I did, perhaps I caused her to think again,” he said. “She is very proud of the video, as she should be because it’s incredible.”

By the time the interview aired (a week later), Madonna had already pulled the American Life video and made a statement regarding her choice.

You can read the statement and watch the full music video here.

Today in Madonna History: April 8, 2003

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On April 8 2003, American Life was released digitally as the lead single from Madonna’s ninth studio album of the same name.

American Life was written and produced by Madonna and Mirwais Ahmadzaï, and was released by Maverick Records.

Lyrics:

Do I have to change my name?
Will it get me far?
Should I lose some weight?
Am I gonna be a star?

I tried to be a boy
I tried to be a girl
I tried to be a mess
I tried to be the best
I guess I did it wrong
That’s why I wrote this song

This type of modern life
Is it for me
This type of modern life
Is it for free

So, I went into a bar
Looking for sympathy
A little company
I tried to find a friend
It’s more easily said
It’s always been the same

This type of modern life
Is not for me
This type of modern life
Is not for free

American life (American life)
I live the american dream (American dream)
You are the best thing I’ve seen
You are not just a dream (American life)

I tried to stay ahead
I tried to stay on top
I tried to play the part
But somehow I forgot
Just what I did it for
And why I wanted more

This type of modern life
Is it for me
This type of modern life
Is it for free

Do I have to change my name?
Will it get me far?
Should I lose some weight?
Am I gonna be a star?

American life (American life)
I live the american dream (American dream)
You are the best thing I’ve seen
You are not just a dream (American life)
(American life)

I tried to be a boy
I tried to be a girl
I tried to be a mess
I tried to be the best
I tried to find a friend
I tried to stay ahead
I tried to stay on top
(Fuck it)

Do I have to change my name?
Will it get me far?
Should I lose some weight?
Am I gonna be a star?

Aah (Fuck it)
Aah (Fuck it)
Aah (Fuck it)
Aah (Fuck it)

I’m drinking a Soy latte
I get a double shote
It goes right through my body
And you know I’m satisfied

I drive my mini cooper
And I’m feeling super-dooper
Yo they tell I’m a trooper
And you know I’m satisfied

I do yoga and pilates
And the room is full of hotties
So I’m checking out the bodies
And you know I’m satisfied

I’m digging on the isotopes
This metaphysic’s shit is dope
And if all this can give me hope
You know I’m satisfied

I got a lawyer and a manager
An agent and a chef
Three nannies, an assistant
And a driver and a jet
A trainer and a butler
And a bodyguard or five
A gardener and a stylist
Do you think I’m satisfied

I’d like to express my extreme point of view
I’m not a christian and I’m not a jew
I’m just living out the american dream
And I just realised that nothing
Is what it seems

Do I have to change my name? (American life)
Am I gonna be a star? (I live the American dream)
Do I have to change my name? (American life)
Am I gonna be a star? (I live the American dream)
Do I have to change my name? (American life)
(I live the American dream) (American life)
(I live the American dream) (American life)
(I live the American dream)