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Madonna released a new album this week, Hard Candy, which features the first single “Four Minutes (To Save the World)” a duet with Justin Timberlake. The requisite video came out with it and with all this Madonna activity it seemed a good time to sing the praises of Madonna’s videos and live performances. Few performers can be counted on to consistently deliver such stunning (and often provocative) videos and concerts.

I’ve been a fan of Madonna videos and her concerts since the beginning. MTV, of course, was great at breaking Madonna in the early years and HBO could always be counted on for showing her concerts. I’ve selected a few of my all-time favorite Madonna moments: 1) “Express Yourself” which is so visually appealing. 2) “Vogue” from the MTV Video Music Awards. It was just an unexpected look that worked so completely. 3) “Music Inferno” from her last tour. 4) “Papa Don’t Preach,” which was one of the first Madonna videos to really come in with a loud and clear message.

I could’ve gone on and on to pick more videos, but decided to keep it to my absolute faves. Who knows, maybe there’ll have to be a second Geek Out on this topic.

“Express Yourself”

“Vogue” from the MTV Video Music Awards

“Music Inferno” from the Confessions Tour

Papa Don’t Preach

Meanwhile, I’m really liking the Hard Candy album. It’s very danceable, yet different than Confessions on a Dance Floor. There’s a lot more hip-hop with this disc. Interestingly, to me, the weakest track is “4 Minutes.” The other weak one is the one with Kanye West. She’s had her best when she’s on her own rather than with the guest stars on this one.