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The Madonna Timeline: Song #131 – ‘Freedom’ – Spring 2004

mad free 101

{Note: The Madonna Timeline is an ongoing feature, where I put the iPod on shuffle, and write a little anecdote on whatever was going on in my life when that Madonna song was released and/or came to prominence in my mind.}

Created during the ‘Bedtime Stories’ sessions, this song was not included in that final funkified R&B slow-swing album, probably for its rather demo-like feel and lack of focus. It was officially released as part of Madonna’s ‘American Life’ follow-up remix EP (the most eclectic and puzzling release ever). It actually would have worked fine as a filler fodder on the original 1994 release, which found Madonna at one of her most casual and carefree musical moments, because it sounds out of place next to almost everything else she’s done (especially the remixed versions of the ‘American Life’ tracks). But no one says no to Madonna, so she had it on.

“NO” IS JUST A WORD
THAT PEOPLE SAY WHEN THEY’RE AFRAID
AND IF YOU SAY “NO” TO ME
THEN I WILL FIGHT YOU TILL I’M FREE

SAY FREEDOM, BROTHERHOOD
JUSTICE, JUST SAY “YES”
SAY FREEDOM, BROTHERHOOD
JUSTICE, JUST SAY “YES”

It’s mostly a rough musical riff or two, stripped down to a couple of guitars and Madonna’s lofty platitudes broken down into simplified cries of ‘freedom’ and ‘brotherhood’ and ‘justice’ – and all of it boils down into a not-so-promising and completely-unfulfilling musical doodle. Bogged down by the whole ‘justice’ angle, this is not one of my favorites.

‘CAUSE “NO” IS JUST A WORD
THAT PEOPLE SAY WHEN THEY CAN’T COPE
AND IF YOU SAY “NO” TO ME
THEN I WILL FIGHT YOU TILL I’M FREE

SONG #131 – ‘Freedom’ – Spring 2004

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