Archive for category 35. Bad girl

Bad girl

(Written by Madonna/Shep Pettibone/Anthony Shimkin. Producer: Madonna/Shep Pettibone)
Released by Maverick Records in February 22, 1993

Found in:
Erotica (1992)

Certification: None
Soundscan: 171,590 copies (06/2006)
Downloads: 9,930 (11/02/2008)  

Live performances:
Saturday Night Live (1993)


Billboard Hot 100
Debut Date: February 20, 1993
Peak date: March 27, 1993
Final week on chart: May 1, 1993
Peak: #36
Chart run: 75-60-49-43-39-36-39-58-72-83-97-off (11 weeks)

Hot 100 Single Sales
Debut date: March 6, 1993
Peak date: April 3, 1993
Final week on chart: May 8, 1993
Peak: #36
Chart run:
 65-54-50-40-36-39-44-50-56-72-off (10 weeks)

Hot 100 Airplay
Debut date: March 20, 1993
Peak date: March 27, 1993
Final week on chart: May 1, 1993
Peak: #44
Chart run: 57-44-46-45-46-46-59
-off (7 weeks)

Adult Contemporary

Hot Dance Music/Club Play

Hot Dance Music/Maxi Singles Sales

UK Singles
Debut date: March 6, 1993
Peak date: March 13, 1993
Certification: None
Peak position: #10
Final week on chart: April 17, 1993
Chart run: 11-10-20-30-44-67-75-off (7 weeks)

Rest of the world

Australia: #32
Canada: #5
France: #44
Germany: #47
Ireland: #20
Italy: #3
Netherlands: #34
Switzerland: #25

The third single from “Erotica”, “Bad girl” is Madonna’s 35th single and 30th released in the United States. This song marks a before and after in Madonna’s career, while it can’t be called a complete disaster on the charts, for the first time ever a Madonna single didn’t crack the Top 20 in Billboard, ending an astonishing record of 27 back to back Top 20 singles, (from Holiday in 1983 to Deeper and deeper in 1993) and a shorter reign of 8 consecutive Top 10 singles, (from Keep it together in 1990 to Deeper and deeper in 1993). Still the song managed to stay in the Top 40 for 3 weeks, but it’s clear that Bad girl is not a conventional single crafted for radio, and despite the underwhelming results, I’m glad Madonna had the guts to risk chart performance and release material that had deeper meanings and a darker side.

The good news is that “Bad girl” gave birth to one of the most interesting videos not only of the Erotica era, but of her whole career. Directed by David Fincher, “Bad girl” could well be a short film with a storyline. It depicts Madonna as a high positioned female executive with a predilection for alcohol and men, and Christopher Walken as her guardian angel. The dark nature of the video and the ending where Madonna’s character “Louise Oriole” is killed by one of her one-night stands is clearly not uplifting or happy, but it’s definitely one of Madonna’s most interesting videos. The nineties was the pinnacle for the production of innovative and visually stunning music videos, as well as the popularity of MTV, and Madonna already had a reputation for making great videos in the past, but in this decade she continued expanding her creativity through this media, giving us memorable performances like “Bad girl” and many more to come. Unfortunately, this video wasn’t recognized with any nominations on the MTV Video Music Awards but it has become a fan favorite. Madonna has only performed it live once, in Saturday Night Live, and never on tour.

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