In the early part of 1998, Madonna released the first single from her smash album Ray of Light. The song was called Frozen. I was in my senior year of college at that time and I remember listening to this album again and again with my roommate Ashby. We could not get enough of it. This song was the first of many big hits from the Ray of Light album which would highlight a drastically different sound from Madonna. Frozen was written by Madonna and Patrick Leonard (Think: Live to Tell) and was produced by Madonna, William Orbit and Leonard. William Orbit was the true mastermind behind the entire Ray of Light album. His funky plucky dance grooves mixed with drums and guitar were a new sound that Madonna had never tried and it has become a signature sound for her. Almost every album following the Ray of Light album has been a mix of high energy dance beats coupled with a slightly rock edge. A perfect example from Madonna's Confessions album would be I love New York. Frozen was a world wide hit when it was released. Many fans were hungry for new Madonna music. Her last album of all original music was her Bedtime Stories album released in 1994. The dark techno based beats, eastern strings, her new vocal range (thanks to her training on the film Evita) and slightly Goth appearance was a new direction that Madonna hadn't taken previously. Don't get too used to it though - she shed the dark look quickly for her follow up single Ray of Light! The video for the song was one of the most dark and elusive creations that Madonna had every done. In January of 1998, Madonna went to the Indian Well Valley of the Mojave Desert in California to shoot the music video. The clip was directed by Chris Cunningham. Chris was known for his video work with Aphex Twin, Björk and Portishead among many others. The video was inspired by the movie The English Patient as well as The Sheltering Sky. Madonna's character in the video is tough to explain and can be interpreted in many ways. In my head it appears that Madonna is a haunting and mystical character warning of lost love if her suitor doesn't open his heart and soul. You may get something else from the video. As always, what I love about much of her work is that it speaks to people in different ways. The special effects in the video, which include Madonna morphing in to a crow as well as a vicious doberman, won Madge an MTV Video Music Award for Best Special Effects in 1998. Madonna would go on to perform the song during her Drowned World Tour in early 2001 (among other tours) and was one of the most stunning songs in the show. The following clips are the actual video directed by Mr. Cunningham as well as that live performance from the DWT. I also found a clip of Madonna performing the song on Rosie's talk show. This song marked a new era for Madonna - the sexiness was no longer in the forefront - instead a more thoughtful and spiritual Madonna was born. xox.