Little known fact: Madonna collaborated with Stephen Sondheim on an album for a movie adaptation of the comic Dick Tracy. It’s amazing.
The album is called I’m Breathless because Madonna plays a character called Breathless in the movie. Not all of the songs made it into the movie unfortunately, but since Madonna’s character is a singer, there are quite a few.
What Can You Lose is a song about unrequited love. I think, in the movie context, it’s meant to be about Tracy wanting to propose to his girlfriend, as that’s how the movie starts out, but it’s actually just a damn beautiful duet about the risks telling someone how you really feel.
I’m sad that I couldn’t do it justice, but I just ran out of time. Above is actually my second attempt. It’s Tracy’s girlfriend Tess Trueheart and Tracy in the background being all nervous. The first attempt was taken from a still of the movie and is just Trueheart, but I really didn’t like how it came out. I used marker, fineliner, and – for the second attempt – my trusty aquarelle.
These are the lyrics of the song:
What can you lose? Only the blues
Why keep concealing everything you’re feeling
Say it to her, what can you lose?
Maybe it shows she’s had clues, which she chose to ignore
Maybe though she knows and just wants to go on as before
As a friend, nothing more so she closes the door
Well, if she does those are the dues
Once the words are spoken
Something may be broken
Still, you love her, what can you lose?
But what if she goes?
At least now, you have part of her
What if she had to choose?
Leave it alone, hold it all in
Better a bone don’t even begin
With so much to win
There’s too much to lose
And this is the song: