Frozen (Madonna song)

"Frozen"
Madonna, Frozen.png
Single by Madonna
from the album Ray of Light
B-side "Shanti/Ashtangi"
Released February 23, 1998 (1998-02-23)
Format
Genre Electronica
Length 6:12
Label
Writer(s)
Producer(s)
Madonna singles chronology
" Another Suitcase in Another Hall"
(1997)
"Frozen"
(1998)
" Ray of Light"
(1998)
Music video
"Frozen" on YouTube

"Frozen" is a song by American singer Madonna from her seventh studio album Ray of Light (1998). It was released as the lead single from the album on February 23, 1998, by Maverick Records. The song was also included on the compilation albums GHV2 (2001) and Celebration (2009). "Frozen" was written by Madonna and Patrick Leonard, and it was produced in collaboration with William Orbit. A mid-tempo electronica ballad, "Frozen" talks about a cold and emotionless human being. In 2005, a judge in Belgium ruled that "Frozen" was plagiarized from a song by Salvatore Acquaviva, and it was banned from the region. This ruling was overturned in 2014, lifting the Belgium ban on the song.

"Frozen" received acclaim from music critics, some of whom deemed it an album standout. It was described as being a masterpiece, and its melodic beat and sound were defined as "cinematic". The song was a worldwide chart success, peaking at number two on the US Billboard Hot 100, becoming Madonna's sixth number-two single and the artist with most number-two hits in the history of that chart, while it reached number one on the Hot Dance Club Play chart. It ultimately peaked at number one in the United Kingdom, Italy, Spain and Finland, and also within the top-five in other countries, such as Australia, Italy, Sweden and Switzerland.

The accompanying music video for "Frozen" was directed by Chris Cunningham in a desert in California, portraying Madonna as an ethereal, witchy, melancholy persona, shapeshifting into a flock of birds and a black dog. The music video received a MTV Video Music Award for "Best Special Effects" in 1998. To promote Ray of Light, the singer performed the song in several occasions including on Wetten dass..?. Additionally, it was included in three of Madonna's concert tours. "Frozen" has been covered by a number of artists, such as Talisman and Thy Disease.

Background

A woman with short brunette hair wearing a black-and-red kimono. She is singing, while holding a microphone with her left hand.
Madonna performing "Frozen" during the Geisha segment of the Drowned World Tour (2001).

After Madonna gave birth to her daughter Lourdes, in 1996, she enrolled in Kabbalah and started studying Hinduism and yoga, all of which helped her "step outside [myself] and see the world from a different perspective." [1] The singer was inspired by these activities, as she began introspecting herself. "That was a big catalyst for me. It took me on a search for answers to questions I'd never asked myself before", she said to Q magazine. [1] During the same year, Madonna began writing and producing Ray of Light with British electronic musician William Orbit. [1] "I was a huge fan of William's earlier records. [...] I also loved all the remixes he did for me and I was interested in fusing a kind of futuristic sound but also using lots of Indian and Moroccan influences and things like that, and I wanted it to sound old and new at the same time", Madonna said. [1] When asked about its producing process, she said,

I was so obsessed with the movie The Sheltering Sky and that whole Moroccan/orchestral/super-romantic/man-carrying-the-woman-he-loves-across-the-desert vibe. So I told [Patrick Leonard] that I wanted something with a tribal feel, something really lush and romantic. When he started playing some music, I just turned the [digital audio tape] on and started free-associating and came up with the melody. [2]

A low quality snippet of "Frozen" was leaked by fans on January 23, 1998, after it debuted on radio in Singapore, and posted it on the Internet. [3] [4] They said they knew what they were doing was wrong, but that they hoped it would simply generate interest from Madonna. [3] The song was played on the US radios, including the WKTU New York radio. [4] Warner Bros. Records enlisted the Recording Industry Association of America's Anti-Piracy Unit to delete the Internet downloads to the song. Erik Bradley, musical director of Chicago B96, classified "Frozen" as a "the mark of a smash. Clearly, American pop radio needs Madonna", after his station leaked it in the United States. [4] According to Jon Uren, marketing director of Warner Music Europe, the song also had "fantastic" early support across Europe. [4] Shortly after the song leaked, a remix version of "Frozen" was broadcast by the BBC website, [3] and also was previewed on the soundtrack at the 1998 Versace fashion spring parade. [5]