SHOCKING NEWS: Madonna divorces Guy Ritchie. Well, not that shocking. It is Hollywood where the trendy styles of haute couture gowns last as long as celebrity couple names. Still, it is sad that they divorced after 8 years. But we should focus on why Madonna is great: Her music. She’s reinvented herself every year for the past three decades. And from my perspective, here’s seven songs that showcase the rocking Madgesty of Reinvention:
Originally coming from a forgettable movie soundtrack (does anyone remember Dick Tracy), Vogue became Madonna’s masterpiece. Considered one of the greatest songs of the 90s that MTV even ranked the second greatest music video ever made, the black and white music video evokes Old Hollywood of the 1930s. The glamorous side with Madonna imitating Marlene Dietrich, Veronica Lake, and Marilyn Monroe. And for anyone who doesn’t know what Vogue is, it originated from the gay clubs that consisted hand gestures imitating old Hollywood stars. My favorite part of the song is the roll call. I could name all the stars that I adored ever since I was 5. It’s a shame Madonna had to cut off three other greats: Judy Garland, Audrey Hepburn, Elizabeth Taylor.
The year of 1998 marked the spiritual side of Madonna after almost two decades of shocks and sex-escapades. As a pioneer of the MTV generation, the video encapsulates a blue-tinted desert landscape with Madonna dressed in black apparel and numerous crows around. It is one of my favorite songs because of the electronica and Eastern instrument influence. A brave endeavor that showcased the mature side of Madonna.
After a period of spiritual discovery, Madonna returns to her roots to ultimate dance pop music paying homages to the disco era, especially ABBA with a rare sampling of “Gimmie! Gimmie! Gimmie! (A Man After Midnight).” The energy is vibrant and pure pop that jumps off the music video. I remember H&M played this song incessantly for the grand opening in San Francisco. Fond Memories that I perceive “Hung Up” as one of my favorite songs of all time considering the “Confessions on the Dancefloor” had high-quality songs to compete with.
Take A Bow:
A strong departure from Madonna’s usual pop songs, “Take A Bow” is pure R&B from 1995. The melody was produced by Babyface. The music video had a gorgeous background of Madonna in love with a matador and her heart broken by her. I have the fondest memory of “Take A Bow” as a bittersweet song of life, specifically love and neglect.
Considered one of her most experimental songs, Madonna collaborated with music artist Bjork. It contains weird lyrics and visualizes a dream sequence with Madonna birthing doves and a face of the eyes and the mouths distortedly switched. As abstract the visuals portrayed, the song was very meditative and showcased another side of Madonna
One of her early songs, “Material Girl” is another example of Madonna paying homage to glamorous Hollywood. Madonna mimicks Marilyn Monroe with her famous “Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend” from the Gentlemen Prefer Blondes musical.
An early song from Madonna’s career that is constantly overlooked because she has so many great songs. The song is raw with Madonna heard from the beginning of her career. The music video was low-budget with Madonna dressed in white laying on the streets. Nothing groundbreaking, but interesting to note. No one could suspect that Madonna could have been where she is at now.