She has a platinum record and a sold out tour that may end up being the top-grossing tour ever by a female artist. She is controversial and always createsÂ a national buzz and is one of the best selling music artists of all time. What’s odd about this is that I rarely heard her new singles on the radio. Radio barely spun first three singles from her latest album.
Hung Up” got middling airplay on mainstream top 40 outlets, “Sorry” was barely played, and “Get Together” has been all but ignored by pop stations. (Her album, “Confessions on a Dance Floor,” has sold a healthy 1.5 million copies, according to Nielsen SoundScan.)
Why did radio shun legitimate MadonnaÂ singles that J Lo could never get her hands on? Because she isn’t hip hop enough. I know many at this point haven’t tuned into radio for the last year but your not missing anything. Hip Hop owns radio.
Warner Bros. was aware that the songs on “Confessions” could present challenges at mainstream top 40 radio, acknowledges Tom Biery, the label’s senior VP of promotions. “Top 40 radio is so hip-hop-driven,” he says. “We were coming in with a global pop star who made a dance record.”
If you want to earn your position at top 40 I suggest youÂ lose your artistic vision and write hip hop songs. Nelly Furtado and Mariah Carey took no chances and quickly hopped on the hip hop wagon. Even so called punk rockers Good CharlotteÂ are going to trade in the axe for a rap and has recorded a track with the Game for their upcoming album.
According to Dom Theodore, regional VP of programming for Clear Channel and program director of top 40 WKQI Detroit, today’s programmers consider each Madonna song on a case-by-case basis to determine if it fits mainstream top 40, adult top 40 or both. Or neither. For Theodore, the sound of “Confessions on a Dance Floor” skews more retro-adult top 40 than mainstream top 40, while recent club tracks like Rihanna’s “SOS” have “more hip-hop credibility.” The Rihanna jam may reference an early-’80s dance hit (Soft Cell’s “Tainted Love”) but Theodore believes it does not have the same “retro ’70s feel” as the Madonna tracks.
Are your ears bleeding from theÂ beats ofÂ Hip Hop? Then pack your bags and move out of the US (The Home of Hip Hop)
Madonna has had no such problems internationally. Since its release last November, “Confessions on a Dance Floor” has topped the charts in 29 countries and sold more than 8 million copies worldwide, according to Warner Bros. Except for dance radio outlets like KNGY San Francisco, KNRJ Phoenix and KNHC Seattle, Madonna is missing from the terrestrial radio landscape in the United States.
To shun legitimate singles because they are not hip enough is exactly why music is in its lowest life form. But to avoid singles from a career artist like Madonna is even more frightening. This is why terrestrial radio is chopping its own head off and people are tuning out.Â (Reuters)