Top Ten Madonna Songs, AKA Hard Decisions

Before I get to what the title of this post indicates, I want to say I tried out the new live streaming app, Meerkat, yesterday, and it was pretty fun. I have no idea if I’ll use it on a regular basis, but I streamed a short bit, chatting about Madonna and the songs I’ve picked for this list. I had five people watching at one point; one from Mexico and another from The Netherlands. It seems like a pretty cool “on the go” way to stream something and interact with other folks. If you’re reading this because you watched my goofy stream, thanks and hello!

Well, let’s get to it. Madonna has a new album out, Rebel Heart. As you probably know, Madonna Louise Veronica Ciccone has been the queen of pop music, fashion, reinvention, and provocation since the early 80s. It’s hard to remain relevant for such a long period of time, but, despite a few bumps along the way, Madge has managed to do it. Rebel Heart is a pretty decent pop album, more so than the previous two (Hard Candy and MDNA). When a legend releases a new album, however, we like to think back to the beginning. Us music lovers want to compare and contrast the new stuff to the old stuff. Instead of doing that, I began to think about the songs that have meant the most to me over the years. Should I make a top 20 list? Top 10? Ugh, THIS IS HARD! There are so many songs! Seriously, so many. I have a Spotify playlist of 44 favorites, for Pete’s sake!

I grabbed a pen and my trusty notepad, and made a damn list. Because I am an adult and I can do this! *deep breaths* I’ll probably change my mind in the future, or wish the order was different, but who cares. For the most part, these Madonna tunes give me the feels and/or the urge to dance around the room.

10. Don’t Tell Me

The standout track from 2000’s Music. I love the guitar sample at the beginning. I love the strings and the emotional, sweeping ending. The lyrics are great, as well. And who doesn’t think Madonna looks fab in a cowgirl outfit?

 

9. Hung Up

Does this make you want to bust out a leotard and get to grooving? If not, you might be a weirdo. Between the sample of ABBA’s Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! (A Man After Midnight) and the actual pounding beat, Hung Up is one of the greatest dance tracks ever. I dig the breakdown towards the end; just that beat and the ticking clocks. A strange thing I love about this song is the way Madonna enunciates “hesitating”. Alrighty then! Fun fact I learned about the video – it was shot only a few weeks after our queen had a horse riding accident and broke some bones. The woman has some determination.

 

8. Beautiful Stranger

Madonna. Austin Powers. Could that combo be wrong? Nope. This uptempo number has a great feel to it. It’s a total ear worm, too. The swingin’ 60s sound mixed with the late 90s production is a win. Let’s talk about the video for a second: How can Madonna make a pair of khakis sexy? I mean, they seriously look like something I sold when I worked at Lerner back in the day. But somehow she throws on a pair of heels and dances like she does, and those pants become HOT.

 

7. Causing A Commotion

This was one of my favorites as a kid in 1987, and has remained so. Back then, I don’t even think I knew exactly what a commotion was, other than it rhymed with motion and sounded fun. I recall memorizing the dance moves and wishing I had a conveyor belt in my living room. I recently learned this song was written about Madonna’s marriage to Sean Penn. Which makes sense.

 

6. The Power of Good-Bye

One of Madonna’s best ballads, for sure, from the Ray of Light record. Perhaps this is a companion to Causing A Commotion? I’ve read rumors that this one was about ol’ Spicoli as well. Regardless, it’s a lovely, sad, but hopeful tune about a breakup. The electronic bleeps and bloops blend well with the guitar. Since we also have to discuss the video as well as the song, how sexy is Goran Visnjic? Talk about hubba hubba. I adore the blue tint of everything, as well. Matthew Rolson always makes things and people look gorgeous in his videos.

 

5. Rain

Damn, this song is pretty, hiding among all the sexy songs on the Erotica album. That awesome crescendo, though! So good. I also love the homage to Here Comes The Sun by The Beatles. I could do without the spoken word part, however. As for the video, it’s beautiful. Madonna in short black hair and perfect eyebrows? Yes please.

 

4. Deeper And Deeper

Put this track on and you are guaranteed to see me start boogying. It’s super fun to sing, too. Deeper And Deeper also gets cool points for referencing Vogue. I have a soft spot for artists dropping their previous hit song lyrics into new songs. Why? Don’t ask me. I have to say that the video for this song is…. weird. I get the Andy Warhol references, but I thought he was weird too, so there you go. Udo Kier is a total creeper and watching Madonna fawn over him disturbs me. At least she looks badass in an afro wig.

 

3. Ray Of Light

Ray of Light is Madonna’s best album, in my humble opinion. The title track blew me away the first time I heard it. It was like she rose like a phoenix from the ashes of a naughty pop princess and became an electronic Mother Earth. The beat is so fast paced, I don’t know if I want to dance or start a mosh pit. The video has that same crazy frantic feel. Brilliant!

 

2. Oh Father

Madonna at her most vulnerable can be incredibly outstanding, and this song is an example. It tells a story about loss and coping with that loss, breaking free, and coming to terms. We all know this is autobiographical. Madonna lost her mom at a young age, and had difficulty with her father as well. The odd sounding violin arrangement complements the melody extremely well; it’s my favorite part of the song. As for the video, there really isn’t much to say, since it’s a perfect representation of the song.

 

1. Live To Tell

This will always be my favorite Madonna song. Period. It was the first song I heard of hers that hit me in the gut. I was 12 years old and had no idea why a man would tell a thousand lies, but I knew that holding a secret until the death was some powerful grownup stuff. I remember being impressed that Madonna could release a serious ballad – she wasn’t just a sexy minx for us girls to admire and the boys to drool over! Now that I’m an adult, the song still packs an emotional punch. I love her soft and simple look in the video, as well. I never did see At Close Range, so I’ve no idea what the hell is going on with the movie scenes. Christopher Walken’s mustache is scary to this day.

 

What did you think? Could you list your favorite Madonna songs? Feel free to leave your list in the comments. I’m curious! I’m glad Madonna has graced us with so many tunes, and I’m proud that she continues to do so.

madge

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

Quick Book Review – Divergent by Veronica Roth

I have to admit, my expectations were not high when I started reading this one. The idea of another “teenage girl in a dystopian shit show” story was not appealing to me. I wasn’t super impressed with Roth’s writing style, either. Like some other reviewers on here, the present tense storytelling really irked me. That being said, I was pleasantly surprised overall. It was well paced, the different factions were intriguing, and the unanswered questions were numerous enough to get me to read the next book, eventually. The ending came around so suddenly, though, due to the movie tie-in version given to me. There was so much bonus material, that took up about 40-50 pages, which deceived me into thinking I had a long ways to go. I didn’t realize the climax was the climax! Whoops. Guess I should have paid closer attention to the table of contents.

If you’re into it, check out the Divergent playlist made by the author. The taste is a bit questionable to me, but hey, I shouldn’t be too judge-y. I’ll listen to the songs.

I suppose I’ll have to check out the movie too, huh?

Meri Listens To Podcasts

Podcasts are a fun, great, super duper platform to express yourself on the internet.  Like something?  Are you funny?  Want to share your interests with the masses?  Make a podcast.  Or, if you don’t want to make one, listen to one or 40.  I happen to do both.  Me and my wonderfully talented lady friends do the MouthyBroadcast podcast, which is part comedy, group therapy, geekdom, and rant space.  It’s great.  Feel free to subscribe to our insanity.  I also listen to bunch of podcasts, mainly when I’m in my car going to and from work.  I’m happy to suggest my favorites, and feel free to tell me yours in the comments!  I’m always looking for new ones.

First upI Seem Fun – The Diary of Jen Kirkman Podcast.  I first heard Jen on another favorite podcast (which I’ll discuss in a second).  I loved her voice and desire to revive the old 80s show, Puttin’ On The Hits.  Remember that show?  Here’s a taste:

Anyway, so I decided to check out Jen’s podcast – LOVE IT.  You’d think that one person sitting in their bed or couch and talking into a mike would not be engaging or interesting, but not JK.  She sings along to songs adorably, dishes about her LA life, reads listener emails, and has the coolest family.

Second podcast on my current fave list:  The Fogelnest Files.  Here’s the deal:  Listen to Jake Fogelnest play random You Tube clips, usually with a cool guest, then watch the clips on his very own You Tube channel (it’s on the provided link).  Jake never fails to find some AMAZING stuff.  Like a clip from Fernwood Tonight.

Third upU Talkin’ U2 To Me?.  One of my favorite actors, Adam Scott, teams up with fellow Scott, Scott Aukerman, to comprehensively (and hilariously) discuss the career of the best band in the world, U2.  They’re only on episode two as of this typing, but if the first one’s an indication of the fun I’m going to have listening, I’ve found what I’m Looking For.  Har har har.

A Musical Intro

Hi.  This is the first post on my new website.  There will be all kinds of fun stuff here, so go make yourself a nice cocktail, have a snack, and enjoy yourself.  This place is a work in progress, so bear with me.  Pretty soon I’ll have it all spiffy looking, with cool features, including my future podcast, Meri’s World.  But for now, I’m just going to post random things to get my creative juices flowing and whatnot.

Today, I’m starting my Saturday with a clingy cat on my lap, the computer in front of me, and some music playing.  My friend Peter created a playlist that’s been in heavy rotation lately, and one song in particular has been speaking to me.  It’s one of those songs I’ve loved since I was 14, but didn’t know why particularly until I got older.  Don’t Change by INXS.  

LYRICS ALERT!!!

I’m standing here on the ground
The sky above won’t fall down
See no evil in all direction
Resolution of happiness
Things have been dark
For too longDon’t change for you
Don’t change a thing for meI found a love I had lost
It was gone for too long
Hear no evil in all directions
Execution of bitterness
Message received loud and clearDon’t change for you
Don’t change a thing for me

I’m standing here on the ground
The sky above won’t fall down
See no evil in all directions
Resolution of happiness
Things have been dark for too long

Don’t change for you
Don’t change a thing for me

Baby Michael Hutchence.  *sigh*
I’ll leave you with that today.  Be good, kitty cats.  Oh, and here’s the playlist I’ve been jamming to all week:  Songs That Hit You In The Feels