Friday, April 19, 2024

Madonna Fans Brace For Bad News on the Charts as “Rebel Heart” Beats Slowly


Madonna’s concert ticket sales, you don’t have to worry about. A soft start doesn’t mean a bad one, and she only has 8 dates on sale so far. Some cities are starting to add second shows, so you know, Madonna live always does well.

On the charts, it’s a different story. Legacy artists struggle, all of them. In the 70s and 80s we never had artists in their 50s and 60s pushing to stay relevant with new music. Now we have rafts of them, no room on radio, and labels like Verve being shut down. All the while, the audience for older artists increases and no one listens.

Madonna’s “Rebel Heart” is at 7 on iTunes. The physical CD at amazon is down below 100, both clean and dirty versions. The digital version on amazon is at number 2, and the Super Deluxe CD is in the top 10. Madonna is not going to debut at number 1 on Tuesday. She’ll be lucky to finish second. And that’s even with giveaway CDs that come with concert tickets.

Madonna has some big issues about transitioning to adulthood. She cannot sing like Lady Gaga, so there’s no Tony Bennett-type standards album in the future. She’s not going to cover other peoples’ songs. She has to have the songs made for her. In an interview with EdgeMedia she talks about producers coming and going on “Rebel Heart,” and how the hack of her demos caused her a lot of anxiety.

Anyway, “Rebel Heart” will go gold one day (500,000 copies) after Madonna’s toured. If only she had an executive producer to shape the album and market a single. But this is the problem when you’re not really on a label, and your CD is just a tour souvenir. Someone should make a great video for “Addicted to the One that Got Away” of all of Madonna’s ex-es.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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