Why is Madonna’s Bedtime Stories on my best 1,000 albums ever list?
The secret’s out on this one.
Some stats & info about Madonna – Bedtime Stories
- What kind of musical stylings does this album represent? Pop, Pop Music, Dance Music, Adult Contemporary
- Rolling Stone’s greatest 500 albums ranking – not ranked!
- All Music’s rating – 4 out of 5 stars
- When was Bedtime Stories released? 1994
- My ranking, the one you’re reading right now – #745 out of 1,000
Madonna’s Bedtime Stories on Spotify
What does the “best 1,000 albums ever” mean and why are you doing this?
Yeah, I know it’s audacious, a little crazy (okay, maybe a lot cray cray), bordering on criminal nerdery.
But here’s what it’s NOT: a definitive list of the Greatest Albums of All-Time. This is 100% my own personal super biased, incredibly subjective review of what my top 1,000 albums are, ranked in painstaking order over the course of doing research for nearly a year, Rob from High Fidelity style. Find out more about why I embarked on a best 1,000 albums ever project.
What does Madonna’s Bedtime Stories mean to me? What does it make me feel? Why is it exciting or compelling?
It probably had as much to do with my evolution as a music fan and maturity overall as anything to do with Madonna’s music, but I clearly recall listening to Bedtime Stories and appreciation the sophistication and songwriting chops that consistently run through the album. And certainly this was a different side of an artist from the “Material Girl” of the 1980s or who had put out the Erotica album a few years earlier.
“Secret” is Bedtime Stories’ best song. It has a dreamy quality yet is catchy and moves briskly at the same time, with its hip hop beat and layered string arrangements.
“Human Nature” has a slinky, sexier quality to it while still maintaining that dreamy quality that turns throughout the album. Some of the repeated lines throughout the song (“Express yourself, don’t repress yourself”) might come off as a little hoakey but for me the song holds up quite well overall.
“Take a Bow” is an earnest, beautiful ballad with gorgeous production and top notch vocals from Madonna.
Personal stuff that’s somehow related to Madonna’s Bedtime Stories
I have a very specific memory involving Bedtime Stories dating back to my senior year of college at Binghamton University in New York. I had gotten into jogging a few years earlier (and credit to my girlfriend at the time, Nicole, for getting me off the old college couch and get moving) and then joined the rugby team during my senior year.
It was the still the era of mix tapes, and I recall putting together a mix tape during the winter that I would listen to while jogging. It included a few different songs from various albums: a few from Red Hot Chili Peppers circa One Hot Minute, Smashing Pumpkins’ Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness, and probably some Black Flag. To balance things out a little bit musically, I also recall that I added “Secret” and “Human Nature” from Madonna’s Bedtime Stories.
It’s very likely that the only reason why I remember any of this is because my friend, housemate, and fellow rugger Dave borrowed this mix tape at one point. When he returned it, I asked him if he liked it, and he deadpanned, “Yeah, except for the Madonna stuff.”