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feels sorry for

What It Feels Like for a Girl

"What It Feels Like for a Girl" is the third and final single by American singer-songwriter Madonna from her 8th studio album Music and was released on April 17, 2001 by Maverick Records. The single was also released on DVD and VHS containing the controversial music video, directed by Guy Ritchie. Its depiction of violence and abuse caused MTV to ban it before 9pm. The music video contains a dance remix by Above & Beyond which contains only a sample of lyrics from the original album version. It became the biggest selling DVD single of all time in 2001.

Song information

The song was written by Madonna and Guy Sigsworth and produced by Madonna, Sigsworth, and Mark "Spike" Stent. An additional composer credit is included in the I'm Going To Tell You A Secret CD inner notes, with David Torn being the third composer. The track contains an excerpt from "The Cement Garden".

A Spanish version of the song was especially recorded for inclusion on the single as the B-side. "Lo Que Siente la Mujer" was released as a promo-only single in Europe. Later it was added to the two-disc Tour Edition of Music and the Mexican Edition of the album along with the remix of the same track replacing "American Pie", and was performed live on Madonna's Drowned World Tour in the same summer.

The maxi-single containing the Above & Beyond and Paul Oakenfold trance remix of the song was also released alongside the conventional single version. This remix was very popular in nightclubs.

Music video

The song attracted attention because of its music video, which premiered on America Online, but was banned from TV broadcast in many parts of the world. The video features a blonde Madonna (later revealed to be a major felon and con artist) donning a mechanics' outfit, black driving gloves and black stilettos, leaving her motel room and hotwiring a second generation Chevrolet Camaro to pick up an elderly woman (said in the GHV2 liner notes to be her grandmother) from the Ol Kuntz Guest Home. Madonna then causes various degrees of mischief, including tasering a man withdrawing cash from an ATM, firing a silver water pistol at police officers and blowing up a gas station, before finally crashing her car at full speed into a pole. It was directed by Madonna's husband, filmmaker Guy Ritchie in February 2001 and filmed on location on Hill Street and 7th Street in Los Angeles, California. The video used an alternate remix edit by Above & Beyond which featured almost no vocals from the original song. This edit can be found on the European single.

Critics railed the video for being overly violent and graphic; Madonna defended the video, stating that male artists get away with the same, if not worse, in their own music videos. The video was nevertheless banned from most North American and European video stations including MTV and VH1, receiving only late-night play, if at all. The decision to ban the video was a source of argument, since it appeared to be no more violent than some television shows that aired at the time. Ironically, the video went into heavy rotation on the Oxygen channel and was streamed on America Online frequently. It was also later played frequently on VH1 Madonna programs, but in an edited format. Madonna released the video as a DVD single on April 17, 2001.

The video used the Above & Beyond remix of the track, which differs from the club-mix they produced. The remix was written in a small room hired out in the studios at the University Of Westminster by Jono Grant & Paavo Siljamki. The third member of the group, Tony McGuinness, joined the group as a result of the remix, having worked for Warner Music previously.

When aired on MTV and VH1, the video was given a TV-MA rating and when the DVD music video single was submitted to the MPAA, it received an R. Interestingly, the DVD single only received a 12 from the BBFC and a PG from the OFLC.

  • Director: Guy Ritchie
  • Producer: Lynn Zekanis
  • Director of Photography: Alex Barber
  • Editor: Michael Heldman
  • Production Company: DNA Inc.

Thunderpuss Controversy

The acclaimed remixing duo was hired to do a remix of "What It Feels Like For A Girl". However, when they were almost finishing the mix, it was rejected because some people renamed the original version of the song as "Thunderpuss Mix" and spread it on the internet. The label thought the remix was leaked from Thunderpuss studio, after an employee claimed that he saw the Thunderpuss remix in rotation on the internet already. Barry Harris (from Thunderpuss duo) talked about this episode in an interview at About.Com website.

Ironically, the internet is the only way to get the Thunderpuss mixes. After the release of the official remixes, the T-Puss mixes were leaked to the internet, this time for real, since it was not going to be released and the remix was completed anyway.

Trivia

Track listings and formats

US 2 x 12" vinyl (9 42372-0, 9 42372-0)

  • A1 "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Paul Oakenfold Perfecto Mix) - 7:18
  • A2 "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Richard Vission Velvet Masta Mix) - 8:08
  • B1 "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Above & Beyond 12" Club Mix) - 7:27
  • B2 "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Richard Vission Velvet Masta Edit) - 3:39
  • C1 "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Calderone & Quayle Dark Side Mix) - 6:42
  • C2 "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Tracy Young Cool Out Radio Mix) - 4:45
  • D1 "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Above & Beyond Club Radio Edit) - 3:45
  • D2 "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Tracy Young Club Mix) - 8:45EU 12" vinyl (9362 42379 0)
  • A1 "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Calderone & Quayle Dark Side Mix) - 6:42
  • A2 "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Tracy Young Cool Out Radio Mix) - 4:45
  • B "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Richard Vission Velvet Masta Edit) - 3:39UK 12" vinyl (W533T), EU 12" Remix vinyl (9362 42367 0)
  • A "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Above & Beyond 12" Club Mix) - 7:27
  • B "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Paul Oakenfold Perfecto Mix) - 7:18EU CD single (5439 16752 2)
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Album Version) - 4:43
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Above & Beyond Club Radio Edit) - 3:45EU Maxi-CD (9362 42370 2)
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Radio Edit) - 4:03
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Tracy Young Cool Out Radio Mix) - 4:45
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Calderone & Quayle Dark Side Mix) - 6:42
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Richard Vission Velvet Masta Edit) - 3:39AU CD single (9362-42374-2)(Limited edition with fold out poster)
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Album Version) - 4:43
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Calderone & Quayle Dark Side Mix) - 6:42
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Above & Beyond 12" Club Mix) - 7:27
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Paul Oakenfold Perfecto Mix) - 7:18
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Richard Vission Velvet Masta Mix) - 8:08JP Maxi-CD (WPCR-10905)
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Radio Edit) - 4:03
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Tracy Young Cool Out Radio Mix) - 4:45
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Calderone & Quayle Dark Side Mix) - 6:42
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Tracy Young Club Mix) - 8:45JP CD single (WPCR-10906), US Maxi-CD (9 42372-2, 9 42372-2)
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Paul Oakenfold Perfecto Mix) - 7:18
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Richard Vission Velvet Masta Mix) - 8:08
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Calderone & Quayle Dark Side Mix) - 6:42
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Tracy Young Club Mix) - 8:45
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Above & Beyond 12" Club Mix) - 7:27
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Tracy Young Cool Out Radio Mix) - 4:45
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Richard Vission Velvet Masta Edit) - 3:39
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Above & Beyond Club Radio Edit) - 3:45
  • "Lo Que Siente La Mujer" - 4:43US DVD single (38539-2)
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Video) - 5:00EU DVD single (7599 38541-2)
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Video) - 5:00
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Calderone & Quayle Dark Side Mix) - 6:42
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Richard Vission Velvet Masta Mix) - 8:08Colombian promo CD single (010524)
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Paul Oakenfold Perfecto Mix) - 7:18
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (George Best Saturday Night Mix) - 5:22
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Richard Vission Velvet Masta Mix) - 8:08
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Richard Vission Velvet Masta Edit) - 3:39
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Above & Beyond 12" Club Mix) - 7:27
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Above & Beyond Club Radio Edit) - 3:45
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Tracy Young Club Mix) - 8:45
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Tracy Young Cool Out Radio Mix) - 4:45
  • "What It Feels Like For A Girl" (Calderone & Quayle Dark Side Mix) - 6:42
  • "Lo Que Siente La Mujer" - 4:43

Official versions

  • Album Version (4:45)
  • Radio Edit (4:04)
  • Acapella (4:22) (Unreleased)
  • Stéphane Pompougnac Remix (4:36)
  • Paul Oakenfold Perfecto Mix (7:20)
  • Above & Beyond 12" Club Mix (7:26)
  • Above & Beyond Club Radio Edit (3:44)
  • Above & Beyond Video Remix (4:21)
  • Tracy Young Club Mix (8:58)
  • Tracy Young Instrumental (8:58) (Promo Only)
  • Tracy Young Cool Out Radio Mix (4:46)
  • Richard Vission Velvet Masta Mix (8:09)
  • Richard Vission Velvet Masta Edit (3:41)
  • Calderone & Quayle Dark Side Mix (6:44)
  • That Kid Chris Caligula 2001 Mix (9:48) (Promo Only)
  • George Best Saturday Night Mix (5:22) (Promo Only)
  • Thunderpuss Club Mix (11:22) (Unreleased)
  • Thunderdub (11:06) (Unreleased)
  • Thunderpuss Tribe-A-Pella (8:04) (Unreleased)
  • Thunderpuss Radio Mix (3:37)(Unreleased)

Charts

Chart (2001) Peak
Position
Australia ARIA Singles Chart 6
Austrian Singles Chart 26
Canadian Singles Chart 2
Chilean Singles Chart 1
Chinese Singles Chart 2
Czech IFPI Singles Chart 11
Dutch Top 40 7
European Hot 100 Singles 8
French SNEP Singles Chart 40
German Singles Chart 16
Italian FIMI Singles Chart 2
Japanese Oricon International Singles 7
Latvian Airplay Top 8
New Zealand RIANZ Singles Chart 15
South African Singles Chart 9
UK Singles Chart 7
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 23
U.S. Billboard Hot Dance Music/Club Play 1
U.S. Billboard Hot Dance Music/Maxi-Singles Sales 1
U.S. Billboard Top 40 Mainstream 14
U.S. Billboard Top 40 Tracks 18
U.S. Billboard Adult Top 40 24
U.S. Billboard Adult Contemporary 27
U.S. ARC Weekly Top 40 3

Certifications

Country Certification
Australia Gold
UK Silver

External links

References

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