Wednesday, November 29, 2017

"Crazy for You" by Madonna

#1 Alert!
Gold Record Alert!
Song#:  2237
Date:  03/02/1985
Debut:  55
Peak:  1 (1 week)
Weeks:  21
Genre:  Pop, Soundtrack

Pop Bits:  Songwriters John Bettis and Jon Lind were tasked with writing a song for an upcoming film titled Vision Quest and came up with this tune after reviewing the script. Meanwhile, the films producers had approached Madonna to sing a song for the soundtrack. This was around the time that her single "Borderline" was on the chart and Madonna's star was on the rise. They assigned "Crazy for You" to her, much to the surprise of the song's writers and they didn't think she could pull off the ballad, especially since all she had done to that point was dance-pop tunes. With producer John "Jellybean" Benitez on board, the results from an initial sessions were not good. However, Benitez commissioned another arrangement of the tune and after a second recording session, the film producers were thrilled and wanted to release the song as a single. For Madonna, the song would be a change of pace from her dance singles and show that she could do more. Released a few weeks after "Material Girl," the single gained traction and found its way to #1 - Madonna's second. It would be her third gold-seller as well. The ballad played well at AC and reached #2, while also getting to #80 at R&B. The song would also net Madonna her first Grammy nomination. It would come in the Best Female Pop Vocal Performance category.

ReduxReview:  This single came along exactly at the right time. Madonna was on a streak of upbeat hits and she really needed something to break that up and show she could do something different. This ballad was absolutely perfect. The arrangement, production, and Madonna's vocal were all spot-on. Coming directly on the heels of the quirky synthpop of "Material Girl," the contrast was terrific and it pushed her career even further into the stratosphere. This was just delicious pop music that still tastes pretty darn good even today.

ReduxRating:  9/10

Trivia:  Triple Shot!  1) There was a dispute with Madonna's label regarding the release of this single. With Madonna's new album Like a Virgin shaping up to be a big hit, her label didn't want this soundtrack single to take away attention from the LP and its singles. At one point, the label even demanded that the two songs Madonna did for the soundtrack to be pulled out of the project. However, the producer put up a major fight and in the end all was well and the single got sandwiched in between two Top 10's from Like a Virgin.  2) The recording of this song was done in a live session, which was different from what producer Benitez was used to doing. He rallied and made it through the recording quite well as did Madonna who apparently did her vocal in one take.  3) The other song Madonna did for the soundtrack was her own composition "Gambler." She recorded the tune with Benitez soon after "Crazy for You." The producers thought the song fit the film as well and acquired it for the soundtrack. The song was later issued as a single and hit the Top 10 in several countries, except for the US. Madonna's label had requested that the tune not be issued as a single in the US, therefore it remained off the charts.


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