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Ray Of Light

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Madonna said: ''"I was a huge fan of William's earlier records, Strange Cargo 1 and 2 and all that. I also loved all the remixes he did for me and I was interested in fusing a kind of futuristic sound but also using lots of Indian and Moroccan influences and things like that, and I wanted it to sound old and new at the same time."''
 
Madonna said: ''"I was a huge fan of William's earlier records, Strange Cargo 1 and 2 and all that. I also loved all the remixes he did for me and I was interested in fusing a kind of futuristic sound but also using lots of Indian and Moroccan influences and things like that, and I wanted it to sound old and new at the same time."''
 
===Recording===
 
===Recording===
In early June before starting recording, Orbit met Madonna at her house in New York, and she played him the music she had worked on with other producers up to May 1997, which he felt sounded "slick."
 
 
They visited the Hit Factory later that week, where Madonna invited the producer to work on the album.
 
 
Orbit then sent her a tape of musical snippets he was working on, which were usually eight or sixteen-bar phrases and stripped down versions of tracks that would later be heard on the album.
 
 
Madonna listened to the samples, over and over again, until she was inspired to write lyrics. Once she had an idea about the lyrical direction of the song, she would take her ideas back to Orbit and they would expand on the original music ideas.
 
 
As most of the instrumental demos pre-existed, Madonna worked on the lyrics and melodies while at home or while travelling.
 
 
"Ray Of Life" was recorded over four and a half months at Larrabee North Studio in North Hollywood, California, beginning in mid-June 1997, the longest Madonna had ever worked on an album. For most of the recording process, only three other people were in the studio with Madonna: William Orbit, an engineer named Pat McCarthy, and his assistant engineer, Matt Silva
 
 
They started recording in Los Angeles, but the recording process was initially plagued with machinery problems, as Orbit preferred to work with samples and synth sounds, and not with live musicians. The computers would break down, and recording would have to be delayed until they could be repaired.
 
 
Orbit recorded the bulk of the album's instrumentation over a four-month period. Orbit recalls playing the guitar and having his fingers bleed during the long hours he spent in the studio.
 
 
After some errors in her pronunciation of Sanskrit shloka "Yoga Taravali" during the song "Shanti/Ashtangi", the BBC arranged for Madonna to take telephonic lessons to learn the basic correct pronunciation of Sanskrit words from eminent scholar Dr B P T Vagish Shastri. She then made the necessary pronunciation corrections on the album.
 
 
In an interview with MTV, Madonna recalled the recording of the album, and said her business partner Guy Oseary was a helpful friend, and that after she and Orbit played him the tracks, he, to their dismay, said nothing and left the studio.
 
 
Madonna said: ''"He really hates those icy strings. Right when I think the track's done, he sort of pushes us another step further. 'Maybe we should try this', or 'I really don't want to hear that'. And then of course, later on, it creeps in my brain, and I'm like, 'maybe I should have done a background vocal on that'. And then she comes in and happily does it, right?"''
 
 
Orbit also recalled during an interview with Q magazine that Madonna recorded "Swim" the day her friend and fashion designer Gianni Versace was killed in Miami, Florida. He also commented that this is probably why the track has an emotional impact.
 
 
 
===Composition===
 
===Composition===
 
"Ray of Light" was a notable departure from Madonna's previous work, and has been described as her most "adventurous" record.
 
"Ray of Light" was a notable departure from Madonna's previous work, and has been described as her most "adventurous" record.
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