Turn Up the Radio (Madonna song)
|"Turn Up the Radio"|
|Single by Madonna|
|from the album MDNA|
|Released||August 5, 2012|
|Recorded||2011; Sarm West Studios (London, England), MSR Studios (New York, New York)|
|Madonna singles chronology|
"Turn Up the Radio" is a song by American singer-songwriter Madonna from her twelfth studio album MDNA (2012). It was written by Madonna, Martin Solveig, Michael Tordjman and Jade Williams, and produced by Madonna and Solveig. The song was released as the third single from the album on August 5, 2012 in the United Kingdom. A dance song with influences of pop and electronic music genres, "Turn Up the Radio" is a song about the power of music, with Madonna pleading with the listener to stop for a moment, to get away from the world through music.
The song has received mostly positive reviews from music critics, most of whom deemed it as an album standout and praised its production. Critics also praised it as a single, however some criticized the cliched lyrics. The song charted in South Korea and Japan, due to strong downloads prior to its release as a single. The song peaked at number one on the Billboard Hot Dance Club Play chart, extending Madonna's lead as the artist with the most number ones on that chart — at 43. She has the second biggest number of number-one songs on Billboard charts, only behind George Strait, who has 44 number ones on the Hot Country Songs.
An accompanying music video was shot in Florence, Italy, and directed by Tom Munro. It shows Madonna turning a four-wheeled paparazzi escape mission into a jaunt through Italy wherein the singer proceeds to pick up the best looking men on the roadside. The video received general acclaim from critics, who commended the simplicity of the video, while many praised her visuals and labeled it as her most fun visual in years. The song was included on the setlist of The MDNA Tour. The single was released as a digital EP in August 2012, and included a remix featuring the group Far East Movement.
- 1 Background and release
- 2 Composition
- 3 Critical response
- 4 Chart performance
- 5 Music video
- 6 Live performances
- 7 Track listing and formats
- 8 Credits and personnel
- 9 Charts
- 10 Release history
- 11 References
- 12 External links
Background and release
"Turn Up the Radio" was written by Madonna, Martin Solveig, and Sunday Girl. It was originally recorded for Solveig's fifth studio album, Smash (2011), featuring lead vocals by Sunday Girl. However, the song was shelved in favor of their other collaboration called "Let's Not Play Games". Despite the track not appearing on Solveig's album, he still played the song live. In July 2011, Solveig was invited by Madonna to a writing session in London. This session produced three songs for MDNA, including "Turn Up The Radio". Solveig further commented:
"At first I thought we were going to work on one song; that was the original plan. Let's try to work on one song and take it from there -- not spend too much time thinking about the legend, and do something that just makes sense. [...] We did one song and another song, and we were having fun making music. And actually it was a very privileged time. She wasn't under any kind of pressure, she had time to spend on it; it was the only thing she had to work on."
On April 11, 2012, Guy Oseary, Madonna's manager, took to Twitter to respond a Madonna fan, who was asking for the song to be a single from MDNA. He replied, saying the song "is feeling like the next single." Before the single was released, Smirnoff released a seven-track digital remix EP titled MDNA: Nightlife Edition Remix EP in the UK to promote the album. It included three remixes of "Turn Up the Radio" by Leo Zero, Richard Vission and Marco V. The mixes by Zero and Vission were also included on the MDNA: Nightlife Edition of the album which was exclusively sold in the US. The Smirnoff remixes were not released as part of the single and were exclusively available through their Facebook page. The single was released on August 5, 2012 in the United Kingdom and in Germany on August 17, 2012. It included remixes by Offer Nissim, Martin Solveig and R3hab with Madonna teaming up with group Far East Movement to feature on the Laidback Luke remix of the single. The song was released in the United States, as Interscope Records begins seeking airplay for the song at Mainstream Top 40 stations on September 25, 2012.
A 22 second sample of "Turn Up the Radio".
|Problems playing this file? See media help.|
The song begins with a keyboard start before turning into and '80s-inspired dance-pop number. Reviewers noted that the song was inarguably different from the album's first two singles—"Give Me All Your Luvin'" and "Girl Gone Wild"—and accepted that it would have been a stronger choice as the lead single from MDNA. Lyrically, she pleads with the listener to stop for a moment, to get away from the world through music, with lyrics such as: "I don't know how I got to this stage / Let me out of my cage cause I'm dying / Turn up the radio, turn up the radio / Don't ask me where I wanna go, we gotta turn up the radio." It also talks about the need for one and all to chill out and have some fun. According to NME's Priya Elan, "the song continues her career-spanning themes of getting into the groove, of uniting the bourgeoisie and rebelling." Nick Levine writing for The National pointed out that the song recalls her 2006 hit "Get Together".
The song received critical acclaim from music critics. In a pre-release special interview of the album, Attitude magazine praised the track, writing: "It may sound trite but there's urgency in its simplicity. It transforms into the album’s most pounding moment, reaching a climax that threatens to blow the speakers. Some might find it unusually generic, but she makes it her own and fans will be happy to have a dancefloor filler that will shake the clubs and would happily find a slot on the next series of Glee." John Mitchell from MTV News called it "a big, anthemic dance-pop wonder with glittery synths and fun lyrics." He also referred to the song as "the best thing she's done since "Hung Up." Virgin Media gave the song 4 out of 5 stars, writing: "It is that precious entity that Madge still produces every now and then: a brilliant Holiday-style summer-friendly pop song. Dean Piper from The Mirror named it "an instant Madonna pop classic." Sydney Star Observer's Nick Bond called it producer Martin Solveig’s best track on the album, praising Madonna's "sugary vocals", while deeming it "catchy" and comparing it favorably to Madonna's '80s music. Billboard called it one of the best tracks of the album, and said that "while the lyrics aren't provocative or necessarily new, it's still a peppy little tune that would sound great "on the radio." Laurence Green from musicOMH, also praised the track, writing that "the song repositions Madonna as the American Queen triumphant with the aid of a properly classic 'Madge melody' that echoes her '80s greats."
However, in a review of MDNA, Neil McCormick of The Daily Telegraph gave a mixed to positive review, praising its dance-friendly nature, but calling the lyrics banal. Aidin Vaziri of the San Francisco Chronicle also gave a mixed review, stating: "Madonna might actually be turning reflective ... on the head-hammering 'Turn Up the Radio', when she sings, 'It was time I opened my eyes/ I'm leaving the past behind.' Is it about her doomed relationship with Guy Ritchie? Who knows? Who cares?". Matthew Parpetua from Pitchfork Media criticized Solveig's "unimaginative arrangements".
The song debuted at number 39 on the US Hot Dance Club Play, and reached number 19 the following week, earning the title of "Greatest Gainer". Once again, the song earned the title of "Greatest Gainer", when it reached number eight the following week. On the issue dated August 30, 2012, the song jumped to the top position, earning her record-extending 43rd number-one single on the chart. "Turn Up the Radio" is Madonna's third Dance/Club Play Songs number one from MDNA. "Give Me All Your Luvin'," featuring Nicki Minaj and M.I.A., led the week of March 31, while "Girl Gone Wild" reached the top just three weeks later. With her 43rd leading title on Dance/Club Play Songs, Madonna pulls further away from runner-up Janet Jackson, who has 19. Looking forward, with one more number one on Dance/Club Play Songs, the singer would claim even more historic honors. Upon her latest coronation, Madonna is now one number-one away from tying George Strait's record for the most toppers on any single Billboard chart. With "Turn Up the Radio" ruling Dance/Club Play Songs, Madonna logs her record-extending 156th leader on an active, current-based domestic Billboard survey.
Prior to its proposed release as a single, "Turn Up the Radio" charted on the Japan Hot 100 at number 68 due to strong airplay and digital downloads. The song also debuted at number 140 on the Gaon International Downloads Chart on the chart issue March 25, 2012, with sales of 188,140 copies.
Background and synopsis
The music video for "Turn Up the Radio" was shot in Florence, Italy on June 18 and 19, 2012. The director was Tom Munro, who previously directed Madonna's music video for "Give It 2 Me" (2008). The video was released on July 16, 2012 with a preview to the video having been released on July 13, 2012. The video begins with Madonna getting picked up by her chauffeur amidst a crowd of paparazzi. She is clearly irritated and exhausted. Finally, her driver removes her from the melee and, naturally, turns the radio up, which re-energizes the pop star. Along the drive, the singer picks up several men of the limber and good-looking variety with whom she sets off on a long ride through the town and country, while the music is blasting throughout their trip as they soak up the good life. By the end of the video, her chauffeur winds up jumping out of the party car in the Tuscan countryside with his pants falling down around his ankles. At the end of the video the driver says in Italian: "La festa è finita, adesso allacciati la cintura stronzetta!," which means in English: "The party is over now, fasten the seatbelt, bitch!."
The music video received general acclaim from critics, who praised the simplicity of the video. According to The Huffington Post, the lesson learned in the video is: "When the world starts to get you down, just take a drive through the Italian countryside with your attractive male driver. Oh, and don’t forget pick up a few vagabonds along the way for an epic backseat dance party. Madonna looks like she’s truly living la dolce vita in the new music video for her latest MDNA single." Sarah Deen of Metro praised Madonna's look in the video: "The 53-year-old songstress, sporting a giant hairstyle, looks fabulous in a pair of figure-hugging leather shorts and a clingy top that exposes her bra as she escapes the paparazzi and climbs into a stylish car." Amanda Dobbins of Vulture gives props: "Congratulations to all the very handsome male models getting their first acting break in this video and also to Madonna, for continuing to look remarkably good in a leotard. She just does." Brett Warner of the website Ology appreciated the vintage feel of the video writing: "Heavy sigh. Remember a time when pop videos didn’t have to shimmer and sparkle, when you didn’t need choreographed dance routines or outlandish costumes? Remember when cars and cleavage was enough? Madonna clearly does." Robbie Daw of Idolator agreed, writing that the video is "the most fun visual she’s offered up in years. All in all, a fantastic video for one of the more mediocre tracks off Madonna’s MDNA album." Spin's wrote the following: "The pop queen’s current squeeze, Brahim Zaibat, even pops in for a cameo. Hey, music makes the people get together."
Madonna performed the song on The MDNA Tour as the third song of the second act. After "Give Me All Your Luvin'", she left the stage early for a costume change. After the "Turning Up the Hits" video interlude with excerpts of "Holiday", "Into the Groove", "Lucky Star", "Like A Virgin", "4 Minutes", "Ray of Light" and "Music", she returns dressed in black, and performs the song on guitar. The performance included blocks and moveable stage pieces.
Track listing and formats
- Digital Remixes EP
- "Turn Up the Radio" (Offer Nissim Remix) – 7:28
- "Turn Up the Radio" (Martin Solveig Club Mix) – 5:31
- "Turn Up the Radio" (R3hab Remix) – 5:41
- "Turn Up the Radio" (Madonna vs. Laidback Luke) featuring Far East Movement – 3:23
- Beatport Digital Remixes
- "Turn Up the Radio" (Offer Nissim Remix) – 7:28
- "Turn Up the Radio" (Martin Solveig Club Mix) – 5:31
- "Turn Up the Radio" (R3hab Remix) – 5:41
- "Turn Up the Radio" (Madonna vs. Laidback Luke Alternative Remix) featuring Far East Movement – 6:02
- "Turn Up the Radio" (Album Version) – 3:46
- "Turn Up the Radio" (Instrumental) – 3:46
Credits and personnel
- Madonna – songwriter, producer
- Martin Solveig – songwriter, producer, synths, drums, all other instruments
- Jade Williams – songwriter
- Michael Tordjman – songwriter, synths
- Sarm West Studios – recording studio
- MSR Studios – recording studio
|Australia||August 3, 2012||Digital Remix EP|
|United Kingdom||August 5, 2012||Digital Remix EP|
|United States||August 7, 2012||Digital Remix EP|
|Germany||August 17, 2012||Digital Remix EP|
|United States||September 25, 2012||Top 40/Mainstream radio|
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