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* compilation *

Recorded: 1983-1990
Released: Nov. 13, 1990

Rating: 4.685 (average of 18 ratings)

Genre: dance pop

Quotable:The Immaculate Collection…captures everything Madonna is about and it proves that she was one of the finest singles artists of the ‘80s” – Stephen Thomas Erlewine, All Music Guide

Album Tracks:

  1. Holiday
  2. Lucky Star
  3. Borderline
  4. Like a Virgin
  5. Material Girl
  6. Crazy for You
  7. Into the Groove
  8. Live to Tell
  9. Papa Don’t Preach
  10. Open Your Heart
  11. La Isla Bonita
  12. Like a Prayer
  13. Express Yourself
  14. Cherish
  15. Vogue
  16. Justify My Love
  17. Rescue Me

Sales (in millions):

sales in U.S. only 10.0
sales in U.K. only - estimated 3.4
sales in all of Europe as determined by IFPI – click here to go to their site. --
sales worldwide - estimated 26.5


peak on U.S. Billboard album chart 2
peak on U.K. album chart 1 9

Singles/Hit Songs:

  • Holiday (10/29/83) #16 US, #2 UK, #25 RB
  • Borderline (3/10/84) #10 US, #2 UK, #23 AC, sales: 0.5 m
  • Lucky Star (3/17/84) #3a US, #14 UK, #19 AC, #42 RB
  • Like a Virgin (11/17/84) #1 US, #3 UK, #29 AC, #9 RB, sales: 0.5 m
  • Material Girl (2/9/85) #2 US, #3 UK, #38 AC, #49 RB
  • Crazy for You (3/2/85) #1 US, #2 UK, #2 AC, #80 RB, sales: 0.5 m
  • Into the Groove (4/27/85) #1 UK, #19 RB. B-side of “Angel” (sales: 0.5 m)
  • Live to Tell (4/12/86) #1 US, #2 UK, #1 AC
  • Papa Don’t Preach (6/26/86) #1 US, #1 UK, #16 AC, sales: 0.5 m
  • Open Your Heart (12/6/86) #1 US, #4 UK, #12 AC
  • La Isla Bonita (3/21/87) #4 US, #1 UK, #1 AC
  • Like a Prayer (3/18/89) #1 US, #1 UK, #20 RB, #3 AC, sales: 1.0 m
  • Express Yourself (6/3/89) #2 US, #5 UK, #12 AC, sales: 0.5 m
  • Cherish (8/19/89) #2 US, #3 UK, #1 AC
  • Vogue (4/14/90) #1 US, #1 UK, #23 AC, #16 RB, sales: 2.0 m
  • Justify My Love (11/17/90) #1 US, #2 UK, #42 RB, sales: 1.0 m
  • Rescue Me (3/2/91) #5a US, #3 UK, sales: 0.5 m


Rated one of the top 1000 albums of all time by Dave’s Music Database. Click to learn more. One of the Top 100 All-Time World’s Best-Selling Albums #1 on Blender’s 100 Greatest American Albums list Rated best album of the year by DMDB. The World’s Best Selling Album of the Year. Click to go to awards page.

The Immaculate Collection
“Yes, she’s a colossal star, one who has been both mall icon and cultural radical for almost two decades.” BL “Madonna was a change-agent of Hollywood-blockbuster proportions, embodying womanhood’s power while simultaneously upending musty notions of femininity. Whether she’s extolling escapism, wrestling with heartbreak, personalizing big issues or just breathing heavily, each listen shows that Madonna’s unerring musical instincts – let’s go ahead and call it genius – were as formidable as her more famous ambition.” BL

“On the surface, the single-disc hits compilation The Immaculate Collection appears to be a definitive retrospective of Madonna’s heyday in the ‘80s.” STE In its October 2008 issue, Blender magazine went so far as to name it the #1 Greatest American Album, calling it “a flawless hits package.” BL “After all, it features 17 of Madonna's greatest hits, from Holiday and Like a Virgin to Like a Prayer and Vogue. However, looks can be deceiving.” STE

“It’s true that The Immaculate Collection contains the bulk of Madonna’s hits, but there are several big hits that aren’t present, including ‘Angel,’ ‘Dress You Up,’ ‘True Blue,’ ‘Who’s That Girl,’ and ‘Causing a Commotion.’ The songs that are included are frequently altered. Everything on the collection is remastered in Q-sound, which gives an exaggerated sense of stereo separation that often distorts the original intent of the recordings.” STE

“Furthermore, several songs are faster than their original versions and some are faded out earlier than either their single or album versions, while others are segued together. In other words, while all the hits are present, they’re simply not in their correct versions. Nevertheless, The Immaculate Collection remains a necessary purchase, because it captures everything Madonna is about” STE – “whip-smart, mega-sexy, covertly dangerous and heart-stoppingly, ass-shakingly, world-shapingly fun.” BL “It proves that she was one of the finest singles artists of the ‘80s. Until the original single versions are compiled on another album, The Immaculate Collection is the closest thing to a definitive retrospective.” STE

Review Source(s):
  • BL Blender Magazine’s “100 Greatest American Albums” (10/08)
  • STE Stephen Thomas Erlewine, All Music Guide

Related DMDB Links:

Previous Album: I’m Breathless (ST: 1990) Madonna’s DMDB page Next Album: Erotica (1992)

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Last updated January 26, 2011.