Today in Madonna History: October 3, 1985

gambler-madonna-1 gambler-madonna-2 gambler-madonna-2b gambler-madonna-3

On October 3 1985, Madonna’s second single from the motion picture “Vision Quest“, “Gambler” was released by Geffen Records in select markets.

Gambler” was entirely self-written by Madonna and produced by John “Jellybean” Benitez.

Gambler” was never released in the United States, but it went to #4 in the UK.  The single also reached the top-ten in the charts of Australia, Belgium, Ireland, Ireland, Netherlands and Norway.

The music video for the song is an excerpt from the film.

Madonna has performed the song only once, on her “Virgin Tour” in 1985.

Alex Henderson from Allmusic called the song “an ultra-infectious gem that, unfortunately, isn’t on any of the Material Girl’s CDs” and felt that “Gambler” should have been a big hit.  

Would you like to see Madonna perform “Gambler” on a future concert tour?

Today In Madonna History: August 2, 1985

A Certain Sacrifice (1985)Madonna & Pattnoshmadonna - bruna

On August 2 1985, Madonna lost a court battle against director Stephen Jon Lewicki over the video release of A Certain Sacrifice. The low-budget indie film starring Jeremy Pattnosh and Madonna was shot sporadically over a two-year period in New York City between 1979 and 1981. The film also featured Madonna’s former Breakfast Club bandmate Angie Smit in a minor role.

Madonna was said to have been unhappy with the inclusion of several topless scenes in the film, although it has also been reported that despite instigating the court case, her lawyers did not present much of an argument during the proceedings, leading some to speculate that she had no serious interest in blocking the release of the film. After a limited number of screenings in New York in October 1985, the film was quickly issued on home video and laserdisc in order to capitalize on Madonna’s fame. In more recent years, the film has been reissued on DVD.

Lewicki was not the only person attached to the film who was attempting to hitch a ride on Madonna’s wave of success in the mid 1980’s. While it is unclear whether he was involved as an extra or behind the scenes, top Madonna mooch Otto Von Wernherr is also thanked in the film’s credits. It does not appear that any of his music was used in the film, which for once is actually unfortunate because Von Wernherr’s songs would have sounded right at home alongside the truly bizarre musical selections, including several by Pattnosh, that are showcased throughout A Certain Sacrifice.  Perhaps it was Lewicki’s fringe fetish that ruled out the possibility of using any of Madonna’s pre-Warner tunes in the film?

Today in Madonna History: July 27, 1985

madonna_intothegroove

On July 27 1985, Madonna’s “Into the Groove” debuted on the UK Singles Chart at number four.  It reached the top of the chart and stayed there for four weeks, and was present for a total of 14 weeks on the chart.  The song was Madonna’s first number-one single in United Kingdom.  During its stay at number-one, Madonna’s first UK hit “Holiday” was at number-two position. It made her the first female artist in UK chart history to hold the top-two positions of the chart simultaneously.

Today in Madonna History: July 22, 1985

1984 steven meisel virgin cover colour (550)

Power Station - Studio C (550)

Power Station Studio C – where Like A Virgin was recorded

Nile Rodgers recording Like A Virgin - Power Station Studio C

Nile Rodgers – Power Station Studio C

Like A Virgin's RIAA Gold certification award

Like A Virgin’s RIAA Gold certification award

On July 22 1985, Like A Virgin was certified 5x Platinum in the US – the first solo album by a female artist to be certified for shipment of 5 million copies. The album remained a consistently strong catalogue seller well into the next decade, eventually earning a Diamond certification (the RIAA’s highest certification award) in 1998 for shipment of over 10 million copies in the US.