Tag Archives: Madonna

Discussion: Play the New Stuff, or Stick to the Hits?

Shania Twain Rock This Country TourShania Twain is returning to the road for the first time in more than a decade, and she’s calling it her farewell tour.

Well, technically, she’s calling it the Rock This Country tour, but it’s being marketed as both her return to and retirement from the road.

I should be all over this.  She’s one of my favorite all-time artists, and I loved her tour in support of Up!, which I still consider her best album.

But even though I enjoyed her Vegas television special last month, and even though any set list would be stacked with songs that I love, I’m honestly not that interested in seeing the show.

This is for a simple reason:  She’s not touring in support of new material.

I think I’m in the minority on this one, but I don’t like it when an artist only plays their hits from the past.   There’s something sterile about it, as if artistic vitality has been left in the rear view mirror and the artist is just attempting to recreate a time that has already passed.

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Single Review: Madonna, "Love Spent"

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-Spent-150×150.jpg” alt=”” width=”150″ height=”150″ />Thirty years ago, Madonna released her first single. In the years that followed, she dominated radio formats across the dial, but never released a single targeting the country market. Until now.

“Love Spent” opens with a banjo riff that recalls the Dixie Chicks at their twangiest. That countriest of country sounds plays alongside the synthesizers and strings that are more typical of a Madonna record. But much like everyone’s favorite country crossover artist, what’s most revealing are the lyrics that target a past beau. In this case, it’s an ex-husband, not an ex-boyfriend, who made off with her money and

left the love behind.

“You played with my heart, ’till death do we part, that’s what you said,” she pleads, after wryly noting that “if my name was Benjamin, we wouldn’t be in the mess we’re in.” It fits so neatly into the well-worn themes of love gone wrong that have always defined the genre, making it an instant country classic.

It may seem a stretch to imagine Madonna finding favor at country radio. Not because of her pop sound, of course, but because of her age. At 54, she’s a quarter-century older than the handful of female artists that get country radio airplay, despite being able to run rings around them in terms of talent. Her facing off against those whippersnappers should produce enough drama to make network television scribes green with envy.

I know, I know. It’s a stretch to pretend that Madonna could realistically compete on the country charts. Despite any surface similarities between the throbbing dance beats of “Love Spent” and, say, the current #1 country single, there’s one key difference that’s certain to sink Madonna’s chances in today’s country market.

Her record has a banjo on it.

Written by Madonna, William Orbit, Jean-Baptiste, Priscilla Hamilton, Alain Whyte, Ryan Buenida, and Michael McHenry

Grade: A

Listen: Love Spent

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n5wvzoxTda0

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