Inside The Groove - Madonna's Music

By insidethegroove

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A podcast that dissects Madonna’s most famous songs, discussing how the were written and recorded, often referring to demos and outtakes

Episode Date
Bonus Beats - Sorry

A demo of this 2005 song has leaked with quite different verses, so here's a chance to hear it and find out a little more about how it ended up on the internet. 

Jul 08, 2020
Episode 1 2 - Into The Groove

The ultimate 1980s dance tracks and one of the finest musical compositions and productions of all time. Yet 'Into The Groove' couldn't be simpler and this podcast discusses the lead up to its recording, including Madonna's inspiration for the lyrics along with studio recordings and isolated tracks, a demo of the song and elements that were used in the subsequent remixes.

Jun 27, 2020
Episode 11 - Erotica

The song that flagposted Madonna's most controversial era, released in conjunction with her fifth studio album of the same name and her collection of erotic photographs called Sex. Erotica went through many versions before becoming the final piece of music and this podcast includes an exclusive interview with one of the songwriters.

Jun 20, 2020
Bonus Beats - Tony Shimkin

Tony was the composer of so many tracks on Erotica which he discusses in great detail along with his experiences on the songs Vogue, This Used To Be My Playground, Rescue Me and the mixing of Immaculate Collection. There are some terrific recollections here on both a technical and personal level.

Jun 12, 2020
Episode 10 - Living For Love

This stunning house pop track launched the Rebel Heart era, but this time with a controversy not of Madonna's making as it was rushed out early following a leak of 13 songs from Madonna's new project. But this is an opportunity to explore the creation of the song and listen to isolated tracks including the piano played by Alicia Keys. We also get to hear a demo of the song which may be regarded as superior to the released version.

Jun 07, 2020
Emergency Bonus Beats - Vogue / Babylon

Has Lady Gaga ripped of Madonna? That's what some fans are saying... so I'm hot off the line to NYC where I spoke to Tony Shimkin, the man who recorded and edited Vogue and wrote several other songs with Madonna for the definitive word.

May 30, 2020
Episode 9 - Hung Up

What happens when you combine Madonna with Stuart Price and ABBA? You get one of the most fantastic pop songs of all time and as her highest-selling digital single, a great commercial success too. The song's origin was as part of a musical written by Luc Besson, but can be traced back even further to the summer of 1979 when ABBA rehearsed their tour at Europa Studios in Stockholm. Hear outtakes from that ABBA record along with the stems from the Madonna song which would hit no. 1 around the world.

May 29, 2020
Bonus Beats - Lucy O'Brien

Lucy is author of the definitive biography of Madonna, Like An Icon, which charts the singers career and includes interviews with many of the key players from Madonna's times in the studio and on the road. Here, she discusses the book, her research and her own thoughts on Madonna as a songwriter, producer and performer.

May 22, 2020
Episode 8 - Justify My Love

The song that closed one era of Madonna's career and began another and it still sounds fresh almost 30 years later. Shrouded in controversy, not least of all for its video, which was banned from MTV, but for the fact that three separate legal cases were brought against the song's producer, Lenny Kravitz. Also discussed is the issue of sampling, the singer's Immaculate Collection album and the isolated tracks from the studio session for Justify My Love.

May 15, 2020
Episode 7 - Live To Tell

The first single from True Blue was also the main song from husband Sean Penn's movie 'At Close Range'. The story behind the writing and recording with collaborator Patrick Leonard is as dramatic as the film itself and, by listening to the isolated tracks from the studio recording, a new depth can be found to one of Madonna's most popular song. 

May 09, 2020
Episode 6 - Give It 2 Me

Second single from the album Hard Candy, Madonna's co-write and co-sing with Pharrell Williams, has stood the test of time as we deep dive into this 2008 single, listening to demos, multitrack takes and a brief tutorial on pitch correction.

May 01, 2020
Bonus Beats - Darren Hayes

In this special episode, I chat with Madonna fan, musician, and singer Darren Hayes, about his love of the icon and the story behind his astonishing cover of her song Ray of Light. Darren describes the time he met Madonna and gives an in depth appraisal of some of the finest moments of her career. 

Apr 28, 2020
Episode 5 - Ray of Light

Second single and title track of Madonna's Grammy award-winning album, Ray of Light also features a stunning vocal performance from the singer. Its origin dates back to a 1971 British folk song which was dramatically reworked by producer William Orbit. 

Apr 24, 2020
Episode 4 - Borderline

Borderline was key in launching Madonna's career and this is the story of, not only the artist's signing to Sire records, but the recording with producer Reggie Lucas. Included is a demo recording, isolated track from the session and a brief history of a small, black, orange and wooden box, which would - like Madonna - change the pop music scene... forever!

Apr 19, 2020
Bonus Beats - Open Your Heart

Writer Peter Rafelson has contacted Inside The Groove to give his full account of the writing process behind Open Your Heart, which was the subject of confusion when presented in episode 2 of this series. Now we have the full story of the creation of one of Madonna's biggest hits.

Apr 13, 2020
Episode 3 - Music

The song that would hit no.1 in over 20 countries was seen as a "success for avant garde music" by the track's co-writer and producer Mirwais as it heralded a new era for the superstar. But how and where was the song recorded? Listen to not only a rarely-heard demo of the song, but also individual, isolated tracks including Madonna' raw vocal takes and outtakes, tracked twenty years ago.

Apr 12, 2020
Episode 2 - Open Your Heart

The fourth single from Madonna's hugely acclaimed and highly successful album, True Blue, started out as a demo for Cyndi Lauper. But the writers of the track have very different stories about its origins. Listen to a demo along with studio takes from the original multitrack to find out how Open Your Heart was created and why it's one of her most popular singles to date.

Apr 04, 2020
Episode 1 - Vogue

Madonna's 'Vogue' is 30 years old and one of the singer's most popular hits. But did you know it was recorded as a b-side? Did you know that it's backing track is based on a Janet Jackson song? And do you want to hear studio outtakes from the original 1989 recording session?

Inside the Groove has it all. Listen now.

Mar 29, 2020