(Written by Madonna/Shep Pettibone/Anthony Shimkin. Producer: Madonna/Shep Pettibone)
Released by Maverick Records on October 11, 1992

Found in:
Erotica (1992)
GHV2 (2001)
Celebration (2009)

(500,000 copies)
Soundscan: 436,110 copies (06/2006)
Downloads: 36,275 (11/02/2008)  

Live performances:
The Girlie Show World Tour (1993)
The Confessions Tour (2006) 


Billboard Hot 100
Debut Date: October 17, 1992
Peak date: October 24, 1992
Final week on chart: February 13, 1993
Peak: #3
Chart run: 13-3-5-5-9-13-18-25-38-48-59-57-60-61-72-86-85-97-off (18 weeks)

BILLBOARD HOT 100: (October 24, 1992)
#1 “End of the road” BOYZ II MEN

#2 “Sometimes love just ain’t enough” PATTY SMITH
#3 “Erotica” MADONNA (2 weeks/1 week at Top 10)
#4 “I’d die without you” P.M. DAWN
#5 “Jump around” HOUSE OF PAIN
#6 “How do you talk to an angel” THE HEIGHTS
#7 “She’s playing hard to get” HI-FIVE
#8 “When I look into your eyes” FIREHOUSE
#9 “People everyday” ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT
#10 “Please don’t go” K.W.S.

Hot 100 Single Sales
Debut date: October 17, 1992
Peak date: October 24, 1992
Final week on chart: February 20, 1993
Peak: #4
Chart run:
 27-4-7-10-11-12-14-16-22-20-21-28-31-30-31-37-42-54-75-off (19 weeks)

Hot 100 Airplay
Debut date: October 17, 1992
Peak date: October 17-24, 1992
Final week on chart: December 19, 1992
Peak: #2 (2 weeks)
Chart run: 2-2-5-6-9-20-30-40-56-69-off (10 weeks)

Adult Contemporary

Hot Dance Music/Club Play
Debut date: October 31, 1992
Peak date: November 21, 1992
Final week on chart: January 2, 1993
Peak: #1 (1 week)
Chart run: 46-15-7-1-4-7-8-16-40-40-off (10 weeks)

Hot Dance Music/Maxi Singles Sales
Debut date: November 28, 1992
Peak date: December 12-19, 1992
Final week on chart: January 23, 1993
Peak: #1 (2 weeks)
Chart run: 3-2-1-1-4-4-11-26-50-off (10 weeks)

UK Singles
Debut date: October 17, 1992
Peak date: October 31, 1992
Certification: None
Peak position: #3
Final week on chart: January 9, 1993
Chart run: 11-4-3-7-17-41-67-70-off-off-off-off-65-off (9 weeks)

Rest of the world

Australia: #4
Austria: #15
Canada: #2
European Hot 100 Singles: #1
France: #23
Germany: #13
Ireland: #4
Italy: #1
Japan: #2
Netherlands: #8
Norway: #2
Spain: #4
Sweden: #3
Switzerland: #8

“Erotica” is Madonna’s 33th single and 28th released in the United States. At the time it was one of the most awaited releases from Madonna, as it was the first single from her first studio album in over three years and a half, and also the first one under her new contract and new label Maverick. One of the most hyped singles of the year, it opens the album of the same name and it’s possibly Madonna’s most controversial single of all time. Following the same steps of “Justify my love”, Madonna kept exploring the spoken verses, sung chorus in this song, but this time featuring a more straightforward tone and sexual language.  It was quite a brave move from Madonna to release this song as a first single, especially with the accompanying video shot by Fabien Baron, which features Madonna as Dita, a dominatrix (whip included) that interacts with a very perverse puppet, and intertwined are scenes from the shooting of the infamous “Sex” book. Numerous famous guests appear in the video, including Naomi Campbell and Isabella Rossellini. The video was aired three times only by MTV, and after that they decided to pull the plug and ended being banned from the station. 

The reactions to the song were inmmediate, it made the highest debut for any song at the Hot 100 Airplay Chart at number 2, and one of the highest entries at the time on the Billboard Hot 100 at number 13, however the media backlash she started facing by late 1992 prevented the song from reaching number one, thus becoming her first single from a studio album to miss the top spot since her debut, and neither of the consequent singles from Erotica would get to number one. One sure thing is that Madonna put body and soul into this work, and I command her for putting out something unconventional and not sticking to the formula. However it was constantly misinterpreted and taken the wrong way, and for the first time after this era Madonna alienated a lot of conservative fans. I do believe that this era was actually a very interesting one and Madonna clearly did a great job pushing the boundaries and sticking to her artistry.

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