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What happened with Madonna's lead singles?

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From Madonna to Music she had the perfect lead single EACH time, the ultimate bop that was keeping the interest of people. She missed it with American Life but she came back with the Confessions and Hard Candy lead singles and managed to attract the interest of the world again.

What happened to the last 2 eras? Why GMAYL' and Living for Love didn't do that? Is it because of her age? Is it because they weren't THAT good choices for lead singles? What song could have been a better first single for both eras? Were just some "fails" that she can change with the new single (as she did with Hung Up after American Life) or Madonna has officialy lost her touch?

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Bad management and bad advice.

In 2012, Gaga and Rihanna are killing it with hit after hit and sucking up all the air in the room. Time for an incredible Madonna comeback... and she releases 4th runner up in a Mickey sound-alike contest. What? GMAYL is bad in every way a pop song can be bad. It's poorly written, auto-tuned to an ear piercing, shrill vocal, and pretty hookless. I say all this and I actually like MDNA. I listen to it regularly! Keeping in mind that nothing here would have done well in the US, I'd have released the following:

1. Girl Gone Wild: It's generic to a fault, but it's pretty damn good.

2. I'm Addicted: Not my favorite, but would've been a dance club smash.

3. I Don't Give a Fuck: Kind of like the Human Nature of this album. Nicki was peaking and would've bought this actually ok track some attention.

4. Some Girls: Willam Orbit would've had time to complete this song and his final, soundcloud version was pretty good.

5. Falling Free: See above. A finished Orbit version wouldn't have been a hit, but classy way to bring the MDNA era to an end. She could've added a cameo by Adele.

 

Rebel Heart: I hate Living for Love. Hate it. Not because it's terrible, but because it's clearly an unfinished demo that no one could figure out. It's terribly, terribly sung and there's no hook. I don't know how much the leak played into this unfortunate decision. My choice for singles:

1. Bitch I'm Madonna: This is a garbage song, but dammit, it's the most attention grabbing number and it would've been a decent bitch I'm back moment.

2. Rebel Heart: The Avicii demo is so, so good. It's a pure pop song with an actual hook and Madonna sings in her range! It's her first song in ages that isn't auto-tuned into oblivion. 

3. Ghosttown: Meh.. This song should've been better. I don't know what's wrong with it. The video is quite horrible. The grillz make it look like she has Victorian era rotten teeth. 

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Living For Love got a release 'coz it's got a 'let the choir sing' bit !
(Lead Singles is the name for the 1st out the traps = ok ! xx)
The next album proper is American Life ??
All I seemed to read was a large dose 'who the fuck do you think you are' ?
'Your only a Pop Star" sorta thing, the Daily Mail attitude over here.
And it all backfired ?
Her next record was a nailed to the dance-floor 'album' they all said 'Hah, We were Right [!]....but that ABBA Sample is top ! ??
Rain, was it's success not a surprise ?
I keep reading that it was it's re-polished single edit ['s ?] that made the less than devoted see what a gr8 tune it was.
Something 'nice' for radio rather endless sweaty humping or dancing.
Madge writes/re-writes/'demos' way Too Many songs, it's the aim for Singles/Streaming idea I think.
I've been filling in gaps ala her catalogue and proof of the above is Dance2night not being a single.
I was never Jackson's biggest fan but I really couldn't stand an aneamic clone promoted as the next big thing.
And now I care 'less' as god damn it he IS on some amazing tunes = how did that happen ?

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Both GMAYL and LFL screamed first single, but both weren't very good. I don't see what other song on those albums would have done better as a first single. 

4 Minutes made sense as a lead (even though Madonna wanted "Candy Shop") because it was so beyond commercial. 

With AL, the album, she threw on DAD, so you really don't know which was the lead single, AL, the song, or the James Bond tune. AL remains one of her worst albums and eras to me. It was a mess from top to bottom. I don't blame age or her anti-war stance on that album being a failure either. It just wasn't good. Green Day's "American Idiot" was a triumph as well others who put out much better material that had an anti-war stance. "Hollywood" was originally meant to be the album's title and first single. If you think about it, "Hollywood" summed up the gist of the album's content - anti-commercialism, critical of fame and materialism, etc. It would have made more sense. Even the Craig McDean photographs look like she's at a film premiere. Instead, she chose the on the nose approach, changing the album's imagery into a blatant Patty Hearst, Che Guevara motif for shock value. It backfired. It was predicable. Everyone knew the US was going to war with Iraq as she decided to start filming the music video, too. She loved re-writing the story, saying that they were already filming before anyone knew the US was going. She was in Guy Ritchie mode for a number of years using violence, violence, violence in an effort to shock (WIFLFAG, DAD, then AL). I blame Guy Ritchie for a lot of bad decisions she made. Then there's the other Guy in her life that keeps holding her back and giving bad advice. That's for another time.

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Donna Summer 'sang' for Reagan.
And you wonder why rumours get s p r e a d  ?
I don't know all the ins & out of the Dixie Chicks palaver but this Side of The Pond it seemed like Madge handed her Media Haters ammo, as it were.
Didn't Cher once advertise something on Sell-a-vision at one time ?
Your so fucking un-cool....aaaand a rethink on Disco [again] and she was never heard from again....:laughing::laughing:
Or maybe not.
Madge is trading on her devotees devotion.
I do not blame her for a moment.
Will 'I' be buying pots of face-cream and a groovy 'roller'...u h m ??
That English guy from James Bond won a gong too.
He was talking about playing a 'Gay Icon' no less.
I've not read in the mainstream press one word or anything about 'where' her Madgeness sung a tune or two with her son on gee-tah.
Where was it again....

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It is a big mistery ngl.

American Life and DAD are great lead singles, but Hollywood is arguably THE worst track on the album and I'm still wandering why the hell she promoted it as single. Confession era was still ok with Hung Up and Sorry, but Get Together was a strong sign that she was starting to lose her touch. There was no need to release such a bad song with an even worse music video (arguably Get Together is THE worst music video in her career). 

Hard Candy had few singles and that's a shame cuz it is honestly top5 Madonna's albums, but at least she avoid some mess track to become singles. 4minutes, Give it to me and Miles Away are amazing songs and they all deserved to be singles. For a moment it seemed everything was back to normal but then MDNA was the final proof that she did lost her touch. Gimme all your luvin' was more like a promo single for her Superbowl show rather than the lead of a new music era. It was like if the halftime show was more important than the album itself. Girl gone wild was ok but it lacked promo and then Turn Up The Radio destroyed any hope left: boring song with even more boring music video.  A huge disappointment aka Get Together. It was more like she wanted to tease the set-list for the MDNA tour and the era itself became just a big promo for the tour. 

Finally RH was the biggest disappointment so far. Both LFL and Ghosttown are mediocre songs and among the less interesting ones in the album. A terrible, terrible choice! She promoted the shit out of LFL but it was too trash to became a hit.  Instead Bitch I'm Madonna is the best song on the album but it was chosen as the last single when the gp had no more hopes for that era left. If BIM was chosen as lead single things would have been very different. Imagine if she performed BIM not at the Tonight Show with Fallon but at the Grammys. She would have caught everyone attention and it would have charted a lot higher and it would have get radio support too. In the UK LFL was played on the old people's radio station, while BIM was a sure hit for young people radios if only had been the lead.

Hopefully she learned tho cuz RH was a big flop and a better singles choice could have made a difference. :shade2:

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It's such a shame this wasn't released :-

2. Rebel Heart: The Avicii demo is so, so good. It's a pure pop song with an actual hook and Madonna sings in her range! It's her first song in ages that isn't auto-tuned into oblivion. 

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I think GMAYL is very cheap.  Solveig wanted a stadium chant "luv Madonna" but it didn't really work in the tour. Definitely not a singalong song like "time goes by so slowly". It should gave stayed just a cheerleader song for rhe Superbowl and therefore included in the album but not the first single.

GGW is very Madonna, with the sewx/religion connection. Good video, too. One of my favourite track, had a lot of radioplay in Italy. I love TUTR, good track for the summer, but apparently I am one of the few. If Gang Bang had received a video from Tarantino it would have been a hit, very original and daring. I'm addicted could have worked creating a little fuss with the mdna/mdma theme. I find Falling free too intimate for a single and not radio frinedly, Masterpiece and Love spent are better.

I love almost every track of Rebel Heart. The song RH had to be released as a single with the background video of the tour, at least, already gad the Avicii remix available for promotion. Ghosttown is the proof that M may not hit the charts anymore, such a shame for a great song melodically and lyrically, and with a video that reminds me the great artform of the past (despite the grillz ehe). I really appreciate Living for love and strongly relate to the lyrics, but after reading your comments I have to admit that it doesn't have a hook, the final arrangement is bad and the choir section could have been stronger. They didn't even mention Alicia Keys! BIM is fresh and young, the first demo with the operatic voice is crazy and experimental and I like that, although many will disagree on this. I think Unapologetic Bitch is also very unpredictable: the reggae rhythm, the great lyrics - it really deserved a try.

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14 minutes ago, MadonnaLove said:

I don't like GMAYL, the first time I heard sounded like a kids song, fast written and repeated meaningless lyrics 

I think we all know that Super Bowl was the only reason she used to releease it as a lead...

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4 Minutes was a great instrumental but the singing portion sounds like improv. It had great vibes and thats about it.

MDNA had generic singles, GMAYL was the most creative of them tho, but it just wasnt that good (it was enjoyable). I dont think there was a better first single on that album. 

Living For Love was creative but also not that good. Same with the music video.

Those last 2 songs lack fully realised melodies/hooks like her best singles had.

The song Rebel Heart has pretty much a fully realised melody with a great chorus, and it shouldve been the lead single. It was the obvious choice out of all the tracks on the album.

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GMAYL was a horrible lead single. The song is a bop but more like 3/4th single.

LFL was perfect for RH.  IF she had kept the RH Aviici mix THAT should've been the lead.
 

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American Life was OK as a lead. The whole album didn't really have songs that could be hit singles.

GMAYL  was one of the better songs on MDNA imo. Besides, it was an obvious choice for a single. Sure, there were more creative and better songs like GB and I'm Addicted, but they weren't radio friendly like GMAYL.

LFL was boring imo. Too safe, nothing epic and interesting about it.

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Giving it a second thought, I believe Girl Gone Wild could have been a great lead single for MDNA. The thing that bothers me is the dated production and those horrid vocals... was that take the best Madonna could do at the time? Which reminds me of the poor vocals in Superstar as well. Had she treated the 2012 project more carefully, it could have become something really timeless and iconic. 

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Y'all better fucking stop it with the Living for Love hate. Most of y'all are just pressed it wasn't some generic Avicii garbage like his Rebel Heart demo.

Living for Love was a great lead single but a rushed one and the video was absolutely boring. A warrior queen/Jeanne D'arc video would have been more fitting and amazing.

The song that was truly a career killer was GMAYL. She had the UK kissing her feet until she released that garbage. The lead single clearly should have been Girl Gone Wild as bland as it is...it was the catchiest tune on the album and a Superbowl performance would have been totally EPIC I mean imagine this setlist:

  1. Vogue
  2. Music
  3. Open Your Heart / Express Yourself
  4. Girl Gone Wild
  5. Like a Prayer

FUCKING AMAZING! Anyway, Girl Gone Wild should then have been followed up by an equally strong second single:

I'm Addicted. That would have been followed up a dual single Gang Bang / Beautiful Killer with a short film and then she could have closed the era with Falling Free (with the Ferry Corsten Remix being sent to radio).

The MDNA era and the laziness of the Hard Candy and Confessions eras were what sort of killed her momentum after Ray of Light/Music.

 

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49 minutes ago, madgefan said:

Giving it a second thought, I believe Girl Gone Wild could have been a great lead single for MDNA. The thing that bothers me is the dated production and those horrid vocals... was that take the best Madonna could do at the time? Which reminds me of the poor vocals in Superstar as well. Had she treated the 2012 project more carefully, it could have become something really timeless and iconic. 

everything about the song is dated. But the video is good.

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The only hit single I've ever heard of being 'too intimate' was Stevie Wonder's song 'Lately' which supposedly he didn't want released ?
There's no such thing if sounds like A Hit.
You oughta know who turned her diary entries into the biggest album of her career ??

ps
"Nicki was peaking "
That is one of Madonna's biggest mistakes yet, in having anything to do with her.
Unless you mean ms.Haris ?
(Hands Up if you have ever worn a black string vest btw !)
The sorta Modern Supreme's look was genius. xx
 

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GMAYL happened and then everyone laughed at her.. Horrible song and when u compare M who made Frozen, Vogue, LAP and then GMAYL or BIM of course something bad will happen. RH suffered because of MDNO. We need another Music/Hung Up type of bop this time. She needs to serve quality again. That's what people want from M not some "look at me I'm still that bad bitch, young bitch Madonna, blah, blah." And idk why but she became very lazy with her music videos. Very veryyy lazy. Quality song and quality video for that song is what she needs for this new lead single, no more fun pop trash. :Madonna008:

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I think "Living For Love" is great but the video was disappointing and I think overall "Rebel Heart" would've been a better choice for the lead single. 

I've always thought "I'm Addicted" would've been great as the lead single from MDNA - it's got an edge to it and is a great track.

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