Great Albums: Bedtime Stories

Most people either used to really love Madonna, or dislike her intensely. There was little middle ground with the talented singer and actress, who seemed to spend her career reinventing herself in a variety of ever-increasingly provocative personas. I always liked her from the start. As well as being great to look at, she was different, fun, and could really sing too. I bought her albums, watched her film roles and great promotional videos, and defended her to her detractors. Fair enough, not all of her many album releases could be considered to be great music, but she was never less than diverse, experimental, and interesting.

Then in 1994, she returned to her pop roots and film-star glamour style, with the release of her sixth album, ‘Bedtime Stories’. I heard the single release ‘Secret’ on the radio, and immediately bought the album, without hesitation. Eleven tracks, and collaborations with The Isley Brothers, Babyface, Herbie Hancock, and songs written by Bjork as well as Madonna and Dallas Austin. This was a concept album, attempting to tell a story as each track played. And I loved it.

Track one was ‘Survival’, a straight pop record alluding to her notorious past.

Next came the huge-selling single, the wonderful ‘Secret’. Just listen to how good her voice is, as you watch the cinema quality promotional video. And how great does she look? If you didn’t think she was a good vocalist, just try to sing the song yourself. It’s really hard!

Track nine is the plaintive ‘Sanctuary’, with a laid back feel, and multi-tracking of her voice.

This was followed by the title track, ‘Bedtime Story’, with a hypnotic beat behind her vocals.
The video is great, and you really get the feel of Bjork’s involvement too.

The album ends with the lovely ballad ‘Take A Bow’, a beautifully constructed song that also had a brilliant promotional video.

Of course, Madonna hasn’t gone away. She made some outstanding albums before this one, and went on to release many more, always changing themes and styles. Still working at the age of 59, she is one of the most successful female performers ever.

47 thoughts on “Great Albums: Bedtime Stories

  1. Madonna’s a mixed bag for me. Dress You Up in My Love is one of my favorite songs. I’ve spent the last 30 yrs as a DJ (recently retired but still in the biz) so Madonna is a “friend”. Every Madonna album has something worthwhile, but, to me, her greatest talent is businesswoman. She has her finger on the pulse of entertainment and she anticipates the rhythm of it. Don’t care for her too much as an actor, though she’s had her moments. I always wondered why she didn’t do a Tarantino movie.
    That said, ‘it’s time to retire, at least as a sexpot’. Go classy or stay home. My take, anyway.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I think she should have stopped doing the ‘sexy’ videos after ‘Hung Up’ She still looked powerfully sexy in that one, aged 50, but that was the ‘high water mark’, I reckon. ๐Ÿ™‚
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I think she’s a great performer and have always admired how she just goes ahead and does her own thing regardless of her critics. The husband of a friend of mine played the organ at her wedding in Dornoch Cathedral. When he died a few years later, Madonna sent his widow a massive bouquet of lilies and a note saying how his playing had meant so much to them at the wedding.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I loved this album, and the only part I skipped was the one with a good instrumental intro and then some dude rapping–I always listened to the good instrumental and skipped the dude. The rest of it I still enjoy. The videos don’t show up for me above, but I think they’re worth looking up. She got a lot of crap for being so visible in the Women’s March and saying the controversial-to-someone ‘WE CHOOSE LOVE’, and I like to support her.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Great post ๐Ÿ™‚ I always thought Madonna was a great entertainer. Some of my personal favorites are: “Into the Groove”, “Holiday”, and “Dress You Up” ๐Ÿ™‚ Their are many more, but those three are the ones I can listen to multiple times ๐Ÿ™‚ Anyway, keep up the great work as always ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I have four Madonna CDs. “Madonna: The Immaculate Collection” (early hit songs), “Bedtime Stories,” “Ray of Light,” and “American Life.” The first one is great (so great that I also have the DVD with the videos), the second and third one are very good, and I don’t even remember ever listening to the fourth one.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Strange you chose Madonna to highlight – I have her CD “Music” on a mix right now and it’s terrific as well, but your choice is a great one Pete! Pity she had to try and remake “Swept Away” with her then-husband Guy….

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Not her finest hour, I agree. but I have always thought she was a far better singer and actress than she ever got credit for. So much of the criticism against her was based on fear of her ‘strong woman’ attitude, and also from sheer bitchiness.
      ‘Secret’ is-for me- one of the best modern songs ever written.
      Bets wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Even though I don’t like every song she made, I totally think she as incredible performer, and one of the greatest pop idols of our century. See..that’s why I love your blog so much. You have so many topics: awesome ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š

    Liked by 2 people

  8. I love 80’s and 90’s Madonna best. I’ve always thought she was a much better actress than she has been given credit for too. Love her in Evita and A League Of Their Own.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I agree, Maddy. She took to acting with flair, and even if the film wasn’t that great, she always stood out. Her promotional videos also showed her ideas of style and construction in short films.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

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