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Song IconMadonna "Justify My Love"

About "Justify My Love"

"Justify My Love" is a song by American singer Madonna from her first greatest hits album, The Immaculate Collection (1990). The song was written by Lenny Kravitz and Ingrid Chavez, with additional lyrics by Madonna; Kravitz also produced the song alongside André Betts. It was released as the lead single from The Immaculate Collection on November 6, 1990, by Sire and Warner Bros. Records. Chavez was not credited on the song, which led to a lawsuit against Kravitz, eventually reaching an out-of-court settlement. Musically considered as a hip hop dance and experimental pop track, it features spoken word vocals by Madonna and was described as a "spoken-word ode to releasing your inner freak", touching on sexual fantasies and implying the position of a woman as the one sexually in control.

The song's commercial release was accompanied by different remixes; the "The Beast Within" remix was condemned as anti-semitic by some Jewish organizations. "Justify My Love" received generally positive reviews by music critics, who appreciated Madonna and Kravitz's collaboration as well as its sensual nature, and was retrospectively noted as one of Madonna's best singles. The song was a commercial success, becoming Madonna's ninth number-one single on the US Billboard Hot 100, and also peaked at number one in Canada and Finland; it also reached the top-five on several countries including Australia, Italy, Netherlands, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

The accompanying music video, directed by Jean-Baptiste Mondino, is a tribute to the film Bay of Angels (1962). It features Madonna's then-boyfriend Tony Ward and portrays the singer as a woman walking in a hotel hallway, looking distressed and tired from work, until being seduced into having sex with a mysterious man and woman. The video contained imagery of sadomasochism, voyeurism and bisexuality, and was subsequently banned from MTV and other networks due to its sexually explicit nature. The clip was later released as a video single and became the first-ever short-form video to be certified multiplatinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).

"Justify My Love" and its "The Beast Within" remix have been included on four of Madonna's concert tours, most recently on the 2015–16 Rebel Heart Tour. It was covered and sampled a number of times by artists such as Vita, Ashanti and Jay-Z. The music video was parodied on a episode of Saturday Night Live and was also seen by critics as feminist, as well as considered one of the sexiest videos of all time by some publications.

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