On February 14 2013, Mark Kamins, Madonna’s ex-boyfriend, and pioneering DJ-producer who helped launch her career, died.
A fixture in the downtown New York City scene of the early 1980s, he held court at Danceteria and produced Madonna’s debut single, Everybody.
In a statement to The Hollywood Reporter, Madonna wrote:
“I’m very sorry to hear about Mark’s death. I haven’t seen him for years but if it weren’t for him, I might not have had a singing career. He was the first DJ to play my demos before I had a record deal. He believed in me before anyone else did. I owe him a lot. May he Rest in Peace.”
On February 13 1999, Madonna’s Nothing Really Matters single was reviewed by Billboard magazine.
The North American two-track single for Nothing Really Matters included the album version of To Have And Not To Hold as its b-side.
Prior to the release of the Ray Of Light album, it was reported that Madonna had fourteen tracks mastered but wanted to cut one, as she felt that thirteen was a lucky number. According to the article, Madonna’s final selection was between two songs: To Have And Not To Hold or Has To Be.
As we all know, Has To Be ended up being cut from the final track list (except in Japan, where it was included as a bonus track).
If you had to choose between including To Have And Not To Hold or Has To Be on Ray Of Light, which song would you include? Keep in mind, your selection should not simply be which individual track you prefer – Madonna would also have had to consider how her choice would affect the overall flow and emotional arc of the album, both musically and lyrically.
On February 11 1984, Madonna’s self-titled debut album, Madonna, debuted at #85 on the UK albums chart, just as Holiday hit #7. It fell off the chart the following week, but re-entered at #55 on February 25. The album was re-released in Europe in July 1985 with new artwork, re-titled The First Album. A 2001 international remastered edition of the album restored its original artwork and title in all markets.
On February 9 2006, Hung Up spent its final week at #1 on the Italian singles chart.
The single topped the chart in Italy for an unbelievable 14 consecutive weeks before finally descending to #2 for the week of February 16th.
The following week of February 23rd, Madonna’s second single from Confessions On A Dance Floor, Sorry, saw her return to #1 on the Italian singles charts for another 3 weeks – while Hung Up hung on at #3.