On April 20 1991, Rescue Me peaked at #3 on the UK Singles Chart after making its debut at #4 the previous week. It slid to #5 in its third week before falling out of the Top 10.
Rescue Me was the third single release from The Immaculate Collection in the UK, where it was issued in between re-releases of Crazy For You and Holiday.
Because the photo on international pressings of Rescue Me had already graced the cover of the Crazy For You reissue, Warner UK chose to market the single using an alternate shot taken from Jean-Baptiste Mondino’s June 1990 spread in Harper’s Bazaar. Ironically, the international Rescue Me cover photo was snapped on the set of the Mondino-directed music video for Justify My Love, although not by Mondino himself. It was instead photographed by another (future) Madonna music video director, Stephane Sednaoui.
On January 25 1986, Borderline re-entered the UK Singles Chart at #15.
The re-release of the single was loosely linked with the promotion of the European reissue of Madonna’s debut album, which was repackaged in September 1985 with new artwork under the title, The First Album.
After reaching an initial peak of #56 on the UK Singles chart in 1984, the re-release of Borderline proved to be much more successful, peaking at #2 on February 15, 1986.
On January 7 1995, Take A Bow slid to #21 on the UK Singles chart after reaching a peak of #16 on December 24th, 1994.
While Take A Bow remains her longest-running #1 hit in the US, its disappointing UK chart performance marked an end to Madonna’s spectacular run of 35 consecutive top-ten UK singles from 1984’s Like A Virgin to 1994’s Secret. Take a bow, indeed!
On December 24 1995, Oh Father was released as the second UK single from Madonna’s ballads retrospective, Something To Remember.
Warner had initially declined the option to release Oh Father in most European markets when it became the fourth North American single from Like A Prayer in late 1989, instead opting for a more by-the-numbers portrait of childhood innocence with the release of Dear Jessie. Why it was determined to be a better idea in 1995, following its poor showing on the U.S. charts, is anyone’s guess. One possibility is that Oh Father‘s brilliant preexisting music video provided an easy, cost-free means of promoting the song while Madonna remained unavailable due to her recording commitments for the Evita soundtrack.
While I would personally rank Oh Father among Madonna’s very best musical and lyrical efforts, and its music video an underrated classic – it never had the makings of a commercial hit. And history repeated itself when the song’s dark subject matter once again stunted its ability to gain momentum on radio for its British release. It became only her third UK single at the time to peak outside the top-ten when it stalled at #16 in its first charting week. It fared better in Finland and Italy, however, reaching #6 in both countries.