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Top Ten Madonna Songs

Each week we put together a list of the best things to do in Tamworth and surrounds and count them down live on Saturdays from 8am. But until the pandemic is over and events return, join us as we countdown the Top Ten songs from Popular 92.9fm Artists from the 80s, 90s to now!

10. Die Another Day

(Die Another Day, 2002) (American Life, 2003)

Die Another Day was a controversial song for Madonna, but not in the same way her legacy in pop music challenges sexuality, fashion and feminism. Instead of writing another sultry ballad which was expected of her for the James Bond film of the same name, she made it her own. Madonna contrasted a string section with electronic synth sounds, creating a sort of techno-style song which was a number 1 hit in six countries.

I hemmed and hawed about it for a while because just for that reason though. Everybody wants to do the theme song of a James Bond movie, and I never liked to do what everybody else likes to do. It's just some perverse thing in me, right? So, but then I thought about it and I said, you know what? James Bond needs to get – needs to get techno so...

9. Like a Virgin

(Like a Virgin, 1984)

1984 was the year Madonna released Like a Virgin, both song and album of the same name. Prior to this she was only known as a dance singer and had only released one album. The songwriters who wrote this for her were also famous for Cyndi Lauper's True Colours, and Eternal Flame from The Bangles. Many were sure this song with such a controversial title was never going to succeed, but it became Madonna's first #1 hit in the US.

8. 4 Minutes

(Hard Candy, 2008)

Madonna teamed up with Justin Timberlake and Timbaland for this song and while the original version of the song is 4 minutes long, the radio version to this song only lasts 3 minutes and 9 seconds. This was Madonna's 37th Top Ten hit in the US and was very big here in Australia as well.

Does anyone remember playing this song 4 minutes before midnight December 31st, 2008?

7. Music

(Music, 2000)

Madonna managed to bring the nostalgia of the good ol' disco days back into a very 2000's dance track with her song Music, from the album of the same name. It was a massive number 1 hit in the US, Australia, UK, NZ and more, but at the time of release there were leaks of the song on Napster (remember that ol' thing). If you catch the film clip, you'll see a familiar face in Sacha Baron Cohen reprising his character as Ali G, with the video being a parody of rap videos.

6. Beautiful Stranger

(Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me, 1999)

If you're wondering how Madonna ends up creating a song for an Austin Powers movie, then you might not remember that Mike Myers and Madonna had previously worked together on Saturday Night Live in 1991. Because they had worked together so well she was chosen to contribute a single for The Spy Who Shagged Me. This was a very successful song, charting at number 1 in six countries and made it to the top ten for many more.

5. Express Yourself

(Like a Prayer, 1989)

Express Yourself is the second single from Madonna's fourth album Like a Prayer which was a top five hit in most of the world. Madonna's message in this song was of female empowerment, urging women never to "go for second-best". Believe it or not this is one of the most expensive film clips of all time, costing $5 million dollars. This is because it was directed by David Fincher (Fight Club, The Panic Room) and his fee alone made up a large chunk of that cost.

4. Hung Up

(Confessions on a Dance Floor, 2005)

The perfect homage to the disco era, Hung Up is from Madonna's tenth studio album

Confessions on a Dance Floor (2005). "Hung Up" event features a sample from the introduction to ABBA's "Gimme! Gimme! Gimme!" This is special to the song as permission to sample their music is rarely granted. This nostalgic disco-styled dance track became Madonna's best-selling single ever, moving more than 8.7 million copies worldwide in only seven months. It was a #1 hit in a record 41 countries, including here in Australia.

3. Material Girl

(Like a Virgin, 1984)

This song is from Madonna's second album when it was early in her career and she was developing her image. Unfortunately the song and the video were misinterpreted and the world began to see Madonna as the very song she sang about, as a Material Girl.

This was a top ten charting song in 12 countries, and has been the subject of debate for years.

2. Vogue

(I'm Breathless, 1990)

There is a lot of history behind Madonna's song, Vogue⁠—as it is inspired by the vogue dancers from the Harlem "House Ball" community in New York City. Madonna took the unique sub-culture of voguing and introduced it into the mainstream with her 70s disco inspired 90s dance track Vogue. This song was a number 1 hit in 15 countries and a top ten in many more, and became a club anthem all over the world.

1. Like a Prayer

(Like a Prayer, 1989)

Like a Prayer is without a doubt Madonna's most popular song⁠—not only did it have the fastest trip to number since Michael Jackson's 'Bad' in 1987, but it was also the first song by an artist to be used in a commercial before released to radio or stores. Much of the hype came later when the heartfelt commercial was contrasted by a controversial music video, which caused great uproar among the conservative groups in the US. Madonna lost her brand deal with Pepsi, but she was not fazed. She got to keep her $5 million and maintained that her art was more important than money.


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