While Madonna fans are currently experiencing the silence before the storm in Madonna-land, fortunately longtime Madonna collaborator William Orbit makes us tide over the slow news days as he reflects back on the era when he last shared the studio with Madonna. On his own blog, while responding to a fan comment, giving us his opinions on the tracks, on fellow electronica producer Mirwais and of course on Madonna herself:
Hey William, I see that youre responding to questions and I have one that ive been wondering for quite sometime. What songs have you done with Madonna that you havent released and that hasnt been online? Also, do you ever plan on releasing anything else you did with her? I think Madonna worked best with you. I thnk MOST people feel that way. I remember when Music was coming out and she said she played some of her work she did with Mirwais and said u said you were jealous. I had to laugh afterwards because even tough it was good, it was FAAAAARRRRR from the "amazing" (hehe) work you did with her. Amazing, Runaway Lover, and Gone were incredible. Too bad Liquid Love didnt make it because it's the best track I think you ever did with her (besides Drowned World). Actually, that would be incredible if you made an updated version of Drowned World that sounds like the original but is an updated version. Id melt because the 1st time I heard that sound (as well as Power Of Good-Bye), I had tears in my eyes from how powerful and beautiful it was! Well, I hope you respond. Youre my idol when it comes to electronic music. Keep up the AMAZING work! Dave
Hi Dave Well, It's Music (the track) that I play at deejay sets the most, albeit my own slightly tweaked version. I love it and never tire of it and think that what she and Mirwais accomplished together was fantastic! I do get a great response when I play Ray Of Light however, even though it's not a bad-***CENSORED*** demented techno tune, my favourite style to play. This is probably because of general goodwill and fondness towards her from my audience. Everyone has a good memory to go with that song.
Did I really say that I was 'Jealous'? I never get jealous. But 'envious' maybe, And I only put it that way as a tribute to the man. I cannot sound the way he does even if I try and I truly appreciate that kind of musicality when it's done as well as that! I would be interested to know what he is up to these days. Meanwhile, I'm very happy in my own sonic world, although still pushing away at the borders.
I had to listen to the Music album tracks on which I'd participated the other day for something that Warners had requested. I cringed when I heard American Pie. A song that truly deserves it's place at the top of the 'worst-ever-cover-versions' roll of dishonour! What were we thinking?
But Runaway Lover sounded so good. It has stood the test of time very well and has a superb vocal from M. She very much sculpted the way that it sounds on the album. I was a bit spaced out during that one I recall and Mark (Spike) Stent did an excellent mix. What really got me thinking is that the song Amazing did not ever reach its full potential. i would love to mix that one again. There are elements that didn't make it to the final. What else?, ... Gone is sort of alright.
BTW, there are vocals that she did in the late nineties that have particular strong emotional power. Not all of it released. Much has been written about her dramatic activities but she is capable of mining greater dramatic depths in her vocals than most singers today. It just isn't always in the obvious way. You have to be open to it. Plus there is always a lot of ear candy too. That combination is part of the fascination.
Interesting the you mention a reworking of Drowned World. That could be very good, I was speculating on that just the other day. The original demos sound magical and golden. But I'd only do it as an exercise in musical possibilities for myself. M doesn't look backwards readily and there are, naturally, Warner Bros considerations which are way above my head.
I don't often go into detail about past work but since I'm sitting here in a nice garden in LA, surrounded by friends and their animals and snacking on tasty morsels, with my laptop in front of me, I can take the time to reflect.
There's have been a lot of requests for interviews from various online Madonna fan sites over the years and I've always declined, but having my own blog is a good place to start jotting down a few notes. And it is over ten years on now.
(btw, was just checking and there are so many Madonna sites now. some of which are absolutely superb in terms of detail and dedication!) But although there is a lot of unreleased material, some of which is exceptional, the question of its release can only be answered by her. And she has a lot else going on in her world at any one time! I always look at it this way, you cannot fault her sense of timing and change so there's not much pointed in trying to second guess her. She'll be going strong for another 50 years, what's the rush? Best wishes, William