In honor of Madonna’s 60th birthday in 2018, a look at her impact on music, fashion, pop culture and film.
Thirty years ago, on March 3, 1989, Madonna’s landmark “Like a Prayer” single was released, the title track to her classic album of the same name.
Back in 1989, USA TODAY had this to say about the track: “Madonna’s voice will never be technically brilliant, but she summons so much emotional intensity on ‘Like a Prayer’ that the calculated come-on in 1984’s “Like a Virgin” sounds like a disembodied chirp.”
And, with all due respect to “Like a Virgin,” “Like a Prayer” was Madonna’s most ambitious single upon its release. The song would define Madonna’s legacy in a way few of her other songs have, crystallizing her pop brilliance and her provocateur reputation — particularly after its music video was condemned by the Vatican for its use of Christian imagery and cited by Pepsi as the impetus for the brand to drop Madonna as its spokesperson.
Unsurprisingly, three decades later, “Like a Prayer” remains among the best examples of her unique musical powers.
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