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Madonna|True Blue (Hi-Res Version)

True Blue (Hi-Res Version)

Madonna

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True Blue is the album where Madonna truly became Madonna the Superstar -- the endlessly ambitious, fearlessly provocative entertainer who knew how to outrage, spark debates, get good reviews -- and make good music while she's at it. To complain that True Blue is calculated is to not get Madonna -- that's a large part of what she does, and she is exceptional at it, but she also makes fine music. What's brilliant about True Blue is that she does both here, using the music to hook in critics just as she's baiting a mass audience with such masterstrokes as "Papa Don't Preach," where she defiantly states she's keeping her baby. Her real trick here, however, is transcending her status as a dance-pop diva by consciously recalling classic girl group pop ("True Blue," "Jimmy Jimmy") to snag the critics, while deepening the dance grooves ("Open Your Heart," "Where's the Party"), touching on Latin rhythms ("La Isla Bonita"), making a plea for world peace ("Love Makes the World Go Round"), and delivering a tremendous ballad that rewrites the rules of adult contemporary crossover ("Live to Tell"). It's even harder to have the entire album play as an organic, cohesive work. Certainly, there's some calculation behind the entire thing, but what matters is the end result, one of the great dance-pop albums, a record that demonstrates Madonna's true skills as a songwriter, record-maker, provocateur, and entertainer through its wide reach, accomplishment, and sheer sense of fun.

© Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo

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True Blue (Hi-Res Version)

Madonna

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1
Papa Don't Preach
00:04:28

Bruce Gaitsch, Electric Guitar - Brian Elliot, Writer - Stephen Bray, Producer, Drums, Keyboards - SIEDAH GARRETT, Backing Vocals - Madonna, Producer, Vocals, MainArtist - MICHAEL VERDICK, Mixer, Engineer - David Williams, Guitar - Fred Zarr, Additional Keyboards - Edie Lehmann, Backing Vocals - Dan Nebenzal, Mixer - Billy Meyers, String Arranger - Jonathan Moffett, Mixer - John Putnam, Acoustic Guitar

2012 © 1986 Sire Records Company ℗ 1986 Sire Records Company

2
Open Your Heart
00:04:13

Gardner Cole, Writer - Peter Rafelson, Writer - Paulinho Da Costa, Mixer, Percussion - PATRICK LEONARD, Producer, Keyboards - Madonna, Producer, Vocals, Writer, MainArtist - MICHAEL VERDICK, Mixer - David Williams, Guitar - Dan Nebenzal, Mixer - Jonathan Moffett, Drums

2012 © 1986 Sire Records Company ℗ 1986 Sire Records Company

3
White Heat
00:04:39

Jackie Jackson, Backing Vocals - Bruce Gaitsch, Guitar - Pat Leonard, Writer - Stephen Bray, Drum Programmer - Paul Jackson Jr., Guitar - PATRICK LEONARD, Producer, Keyboards, Drum Programmer - Richard Marx, Backing Vocals - Madonna, Producer, Vocals, Writer, MainArtist - MICHAEL VERDICK, Mixer - David Williams, Backing Vocals - Dan Nebenzal, Assistant Mixer - Jonathan Moffett, Drums

2012 © 1986 Sire Records Company ℗ 1986 Sire Records Company

4
Live to Tell
00:05:53

Bruce Gaitsch, Guitar - PATRICK LEONARD, Producer, Keyboards, Writer, Drum Programmer - Madonna, Producer, Vocals, Writer, MainArtist - MICHAEL VERDICK, Mixer - Dan Nebenzal, Assistant Mixer - Jonathan Moffett, Drums

2012 © 1986 Sire Records Company ℗ 1986 Sire Records Company

5
Where's the Party
00:04:20

Stephen Bray, Producer, Drums, Keyboards, Writer - DANN HUFF, Guitar - PATRICK LEONARD, Producer, Drums, Keyboards, Writer - SIEDAH GARRETT, Backing Vocals - Madonna, Producer, Backing Vocals, Writer, MainArtist - MICHAEL VERDICK, Mixer - Dave Boruff, Saxophone - Edie Lehmann, Backing Vocals - Dan Nebenzal, Assistant Mixer

2012 © 1986 Sire Records Company ℗ 1986 Sire Records Company

6
True Blue
00:04:18

Bruce Gaitsch, Guitar - Stephen Bray, Producer, Drums, Keyboards, Writer - SIEDAH GARRETT, Vocals - Madonna, Producer, Vocals, Writer, MainArtist - MICHAEL VERDICK, Mixer - Fred Zarr, Keyboards - Edie Lehmann, Vocals - Dan Nebenzal, Mixer

2012 © 1986 Sire Records Company ℗ 1986 Sire Records Company

7
La Isla Bonita
00:04:02

Bruce Gaitsch, Guitar, Writer - Paulinho Da Costa, Mixer - PATRICK LEONARD, Producer, Keyboards, Programmer, Writer - SIEDAH GARRETT, Vocals - Madonna, Producer, Vocals, Writer, MainArtist - MICHAEL VERDICK, Mixer - Edie Lehmann, Vocals - Dan Nebenzal, Mixer

2012 © 1986 Sire Records Company ℗ 1986 Sire Records Company

8
Jimmy Jimmy
00:03:55

Bruce Gaitsch, Rhythm Guitar - Stephen Bray, Producer, Drums, Keyboards, Writer - PATRICK LEONARD, Writer - Madonna, Producer, Vocals, Writer, MainArtist - Michael Hutchinson, Engineer - MICHAEL VERDICK, Mixer - Fred Zarr, Additional Keyboards - Dan Nebenzal, Additional Mixer

2012 © 1986 Sire Records Company ℗ 1986 Sire Records Company

9
Love Makes the World Go Round
00:04:32

Stephen Bray, Drum Programmer - Paul Jackson Jr., Guitar - Paulinho Da Costa, Mixer, Percussion - PATRICK LEONARD, Producer, Keyboards, Writer, Drum Programmer - SIEDAH GARRETT, Backing Vocals - Madonna, Producer, Vocals, Writer, MainArtist - MICHAEL VERDICK, Mixer - Edie Lehmann, Backing Vocals - Dan Nebenzal, Mixer

2012 © 1986 Sire Records Company ℗ 1986 Sire Records Company

Album review

True Blue is the album where Madonna truly became Madonna the Superstar -- the endlessly ambitious, fearlessly provocative entertainer who knew how to outrage, spark debates, get good reviews -- and make good music while she's at it. To complain that True Blue is calculated is to not get Madonna -- that's a large part of what she does, and she is exceptional at it, but she also makes fine music. What's brilliant about True Blue is that she does both here, using the music to hook in critics just as she's baiting a mass audience with such masterstrokes as "Papa Don't Preach," where she defiantly states she's keeping her baby. Her real trick here, however, is transcending her status as a dance-pop diva by consciously recalling classic girl group pop ("True Blue," "Jimmy Jimmy") to snag the critics, while deepening the dance grooves ("Open Your Heart," "Where's the Party"), touching on Latin rhythms ("La Isla Bonita"), making a plea for world peace ("Love Makes the World Go Round"), and delivering a tremendous ballad that rewrites the rules of adult contemporary crossover ("Live to Tell"). It's even harder to have the entire album play as an organic, cohesive work. Certainly, there's some calculation behind the entire thing, but what matters is the end result, one of the great dance-pop albums, a record that demonstrates Madonna's true skills as a songwriter, record-maker, provocateur, and entertainer through its wide reach, accomplishment, and sheer sense of fun.

© Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo

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