Today in Madonna History: November 6, 1990

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On November 6 1990, Madonna’s Justify My Love single was released as the first single from The Immaculate Collection, Madonna’s first greatest hits collection.

In the United States, Justify My Love peaked at number one for two weeks on the Billboard Hot 100 Singles chart. It also topped the Billboard Top 40 Tracks and Billboard Hot Dance Club Play charts.

Today in Madonna History: September 29, 2009

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On September 29 2009, Madonna and Warner Bros. released Celebration: The Video Collection.  The greatest videos DVD collection accompanied the Celebration greatest hits collection.

Celebration: The Video Collection continued on from Madonna’s other video compilations The Immaculate Collection and The Video Collection 93:99.

Celebration: The Video Collection debuted at the top of the Billboard Top Music Videos chart.  It was certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for shipment of 100,000 copies across United States.

The cover for Celebration: The Video Collection was created by street pop artist Mr. Brainwash who is best known for “throwing modern cultural icons into a blender and turning it up to eleven”.

The DVD collection was released in two different versions, both are double disc releases:

  • Keep case — DVD size packaging
  • DVD Digipak — CD size packaging

This video collection received mixed reviews from critics and fans when it was released.  While the inclusion of videos that were left off her previous retrospectives were certainly appreciated, many felt that the set’s exclusion of several notable clips (with Oh Father, Bad Girl, Drowned World/Substitute For Love & Nothing Really Matters among its most glaring omissions) kept it from being the definitive overview it was touted to be.

Another point of contention was the use of cheaper single-layer versus double-layer DVD’s, the latter of which would have allowed for the inclusion of the three additional clips noted above (which would have rounded out the total number of clips to a nice even fifty) and corrected the compression issues that marred the image quality of many videos. Indeed, the varying picture quality from clip to clip and minimal effort given to ensuring overall quality control left the product with a distinctly “budget” feel that had some fans wondering whether the grainy, test-pattern-infused artwork for the set was perhaps a bit too fitting.

Surely, Madonna’s pioneering work in the medium and the perfectionist spirit that helped make these works so compelling deserve a comprehensive retrospective of the highest quality.

Did you feel this release was worthy of celebration or would you have made changes to it? With recent innovations in digital distribution, would you appreciate an official reissue of Madonna’s entire music video catalogue – from her first clip, Everybody, through to her latest, Batuka – as high quality digital downloads? Clips could be sold individually for a few dollars each or bundled into era sets that could be downloaded through Madonna’s official website, with proceeds benefiting one of her charities. Would you support such an initiative if the highest quality control standards were met and no corners were cut? Perhaps this would prove to be an ideal avenue for her to finally market long-requested, definitive versions of her previously unavailable or out-of-print live concert films as well.

 

Today In Madonna History: March 23, 1985

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On March 23 1985, Madonna’s Material Girl hit #2 in the USA.

The US and UK 12″ singles included:

Side A: Material Girl (Extended Dance Remix) 6:05

Side B: Pretender 4:28

Material Girl also appeared on the 1990 greatest hits compilation, The Immaculate Collection, and on the 2009 greatest hits compilation, Celebration. The song was written by Peter Brown and Robert Rans, and Nile Rodgers produced the track.

Today in Madonna History: March 16, 1995

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On March 16 1995, Madonna’s The Immaculate Collection was certified 6x platinum (6 million units) in the USA.

Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine (allmusic.com):

On the surface, the single-disc hits compilation The Immaculate Collection appears to be a definitive retrospective of Madonna’s heyday in the ’80s. After all, it features 17 of Madonna’s greatest hits, from Holiday and Like a Virgin to Like a Prayer and Vogue. However, looks can be deceiving. It’s true that The Immaculate Collection contains the bulk of Madonna’s hits, but there are several big hits that aren’t present, including Angel, Dress You Up, True Blue, Who’s That Girl and Causing a Commotion. The songs that are included are frequently altered. Everything on the collection is remastered in Q-sound, which gives an exaggerated sense of stereo separation that often distorts the original intent of the recordings. Furthermore, several songs are faster than their original versions and some are faded out earlier than either their single or album versions, while others are segued together. In other words, while all the hits are present, they’re simply not in their correct versions. Nevertheless, The Immaculate Collection remains a necessary purchase, because it captures everything Madonna is about and it proves that she was one of the finest singles artists of the ’80s. Until the original single versions are compiled on another album, The Immaculate Collection is the closest thing to a definitive retrospective.

Today in Madonna History: March 2, 1991

On March 2 1991, Madonna’s Rescue Me single was reviewed in Billboard magazine.

Despite Billboard’s predictions, with no music video to promote the release, Rescue Me peaked at #9. However, it was also her highest debut on the Hot 100 at the time, entering at #15 due to early adds for the song on radio playlists.

Today In Madonna History: February 26, 1991

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On February 26 1991, Madonna’s Rescue Me was released as the second single (in North America) from her 1990 greatest hits set, The Immaculate Collection.

Rescue Me was written by Madonna, Shep Pettibone and Anthony Shimkin.

With you I’m not a little girl, with you I’m not a man
When all the hurt inside of me comes out, you understand
You see that I’m ferocious, you see that I am weak
You see that I am silly, and pretentious and a freak

But I don’t feel too strange for you, don’t know exactly what you do
I think when love is pure, you try to understand the reasons why
And I prefer this mystery, it cancels out my misery
And gives me hope that there could be a person that loves me

Rescue me, it’s hard to believe
Your love has given me hope
Rescue me, it’s hard to believe
I’m drowning, baby, throw out your rope

The CD maxi-single included:

Rescue Me – (Single Mix) – (4:53)
Rescue Me – (Titanic Vocal) – (8:15)
Rescue Me – (Houseboat Vocal) – (6:56)
Rescue Me – (Lifeboat Vocal) – (5:20)
Rescue Me – (S.O.S. Mix) – (6:23)

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