by Madonna

Writers - Madonna/Price; additional music and lyrics Tennant/Lowe
First released - 2005 (original); 2006 (PSB remix)
Original album - Confessions on a Dance Floor (Madonna)
Producer - Madonna, Stuart Price, Pet Shop Boys
Subsequent albums - Disco 4 (PSB); Celebration (Madonna)
Other releases - single (UK #1, US #58, US Dance #1)

It came as no great surprise that "Sorry" should be chosen as the second single from Madonna's 2005 album Confessions on a Dance Floor. Even before the album's release it had been mentioned as a strong candidate, and its single release in late February 2006 was confirmed shortly after the album came out. What came as a total surprise, however, was word in the last few days of 2005 that the Pet Shop Boys had just done a remix. Chris and Neil's primary mix, which features Neil's added vocals, is titled the "PSB Maxi-Mix." It was originally released on both CD "maxi-single" and 12-inch vinyl before eventually finding its way onto Disco 4.

According to a report by the U.K. paper The Sun, Madonna herself asked the Boys to do a remix for her after running into them at a party the previous year and telling them that she thought they were "brilliant." (I always suspected that Madonna was a woman of extraordinarily good taste, her Sex book notwithstanding.) With the release of Confessions, PSB followed up with her on this, contacting her and asking, "OK, how about it?" And she agreed.

As it turns out, Neil and Chris were actually somewhat apprehensive about handing their mix over to Madge for her first listen because they had added a bit of new music featuring Neil's singing; they apparently feared that she would think they were trying to share the spotlight or even upstage her on her own record. "It was cheeky," she later said, but, much to their relief, she loved it! In fact, it's been reported that Madonna feels that the PSB work on "Sorry" is one of the—if not the—best remix ever done of one of her songs! (That she decided to base her live performance of "Sorry" during her 2006 tour on the PSB mix—featuring a recording of Neil's vocals—only provides further evidence of this apparent fact. Madonna's The Confessions Tour - Live from London DVD and CD both include this rendition, and judging from the immediate reaction of the U.K. crowd, I would guess that they indeed recognized Neil's voice.)

Neil's brief vocal additions are the repeated lines "I'm sorry, so sorry. I'm sorry—please forgive me." One of my site visitors has astutely noted a strong resemblance in mood and style between these added segments and the opening of the Boys' own "It's a Sin," at those times lending the track an almost quasi-religious tone. If that seems a bit of a stretch, consider that, after all, the album is titled Confessions on a Dance Floor.


Officially released

Pet Shop Boys mixes only:

Official (remixed by PSB) but unreleased

List cross-references