Today in Madonna History: November 16, 1989

first-album-debut-madonna-1 first-album-debut-madonna-2 first-album-debut-madonna-3 first-album-debut-madonna-4

On November 16 1989, Madonna’s eponymous album was ranked #50 in Rolling Stone magazine’s list of The 100 Greatest Albums Of The 1980s.

Here’s what Rolling Stone had to say of Madonna’s debut album:

Five years after arriving in New York City from her hometown of Pontiac, Michigan, Madonna Louise Ciccone had little to show for a lot of work. By 1982, she had managed to get only a few gigs singing with drummer Stephen Bray’s band, the Breakfast Club, at clubs like CBGB and Max’s Kansas City, and the future looked far from bright.

“I had just gotten kicked out of my apartment,” Madonna says, “so the band let me live in their rehearsal space at the Music Building, on Eighth Avenue. Stephen had keys to all the rehearsal rooms, so when I decided to make my own demos, we’d go into other people’s studios at night and use their four-track machines.”

Armed with a tape, Madonna began making the rounds of New York’s dance clubs. “I had heard that a lot of A&R people hung out at the clubs,” she says, “and I thought trying to go see them at their offices would be a waste of time.” It proved a good strategy: Through Mark Kamins, the DJ at Danceteria, the tape found its way to Sire Records, and Madonna was signed by label president Seymour Stein. “Seymour was in the hospital at the time,” she says. “I got signed while he was lying in bed in his boxer shorts.”

The contract with Sire guaranteed just one single, but it had options for recording albums as well. With Kamins producing, Madonna cut the moody disco track Everybody as her debut single. But when Sire picked up its option to record an album, she decided to try a different producer. “I wanted someone who’d worked with a lot of female singers,” she says.

Reggie Lucas, the Grammy-winning songwriter who had produced Stephanie Mills and Roberta Flack, was selected. After recording the album’s second single, the Lucas-penned Physical Attraction, he and Madonna cut the rest of the album, with the exception of Holiday, which was produced by Jellybean Benitez.

“Things were very informal and casual,” Lucas says of the sessions. “It was my first pop project, and she was just a new artist. I had no idea it would be the biggest thing since sliced bread.”

Indeed, initial response to Madonna gave no indication of the mania to follow. It took a year and a half for the album to go gold. But its assured style and sound, as well as Madonna’s savvy approach to videos, helped the singer make the leap from dance diva to pop phenom, and it pointed the direction for a host of female vocalists from Janet Jackson to Debbie Gibson.

“It influenced a lot of people,” says Madonna, who cites Chrissie Hynde and Debbie Harry as her own musical heroes. “I think it stands up well. It just took a long time for people to pay attention to me —and I thank God they did!”

Today in Madonna History: November 15, 2005

confessions album sheet music COADF Promo 550 coadf north american sell sheet

On November 15 2005, Madonna’s tenth studio album, Confessions On A Dance Floor, was released in North America by Warner Bros Records. The majority of the album was co-produced and co-written by Madonna & Stuart Price, with additional contributions by Mirwais, Bloodshy & Avant, Joe Henry and Anders Bagge & Peer Åström. It featured the singles Hung Up, Sorry, Get Together and Jump.

Madonna performed a small club show at Koko in London, UK on November 15th to celebrate the album’s release, with the set being streamed online to fans around the world. The live webcast was preceded by an exclusive mini-documentary titled Confessions…On A Promo Tour.

 

Today in Madonna History: November 14, 2008

Madonna Madonna vuitton-2008-3 Madonna vuitton-2008-5 vuitton-2008-6

On November 14 2008, Steven Meisel shot the Louis Vuitton Spring/Summer 2009 collection photoshoot, featuring Madonna, at Café Figaro in Los Feliz, California.

Madonna transformed into Marc Jacob’s vision of the quintessential Parisienne, striking provocative poses in the season’s sexy short skirts, ethnic-inspired sandals and animal-print bangles.

“I wanted the campaign to be very bold, very sensual and very atmospheric. To carry off all these references and all this sophistication, we needed the ultimate performer – and for me, that is Madonna,” stated Jacobs.

Stylist: Marie-Amélie Sauvé
Makeup: Pat McGrath
Hair: Garren

Today in Madonna History: November 13, 1990

immaculate-promo-ad

On November 13 1990, Madonna’s The Immaculate Collection, greatest hits CD and video collection were released in North America.

SoulBounce.com says this about the insanely successful collection:

That The Immaculate Collection is the biggest selling compilation album by a solo artist OF ALL TIME is no big surprise when you factor in the consummate icon that is Madonna Louise Ciccone. That even her greatest hits album would set the bar for all greatest hits albums to follow it is a no-brainer given the astronomical number of bars she’s raised. Let’s set the stage, though: 1990 was a huge year for The Material Girl even prior to The Immaculate Collection. The movie Dick Tracy, which Madonna starred in with then-paramour Warren Beatty, and the movie’s soundtrack, I’m Breathless, which includes the Academy Award winning Stephen Sondheim ballad Sooner Or Later and Vogue, one of the biggest hits of Madonna’s career, were both released mid-1990 to much fanfare and many accolades. Madonna also embarked on a huge concert tour in the spring of ’90, the Blond Ambition World Tour, while simultaneously shooting her concert documentary, Truth or Dare. She had already solidified her place as the most successful female artist of the ’80s with three number one albums and seven number one singles. So it’s only fitting that The Immaculate Collection, which served as a venerable summary of Madonna’s entire career up to that point, closed out her mammoth year.

immaculatecollection-album-cover-1

The CD included the following hits:

Holiday
Lucky Star
Borderline
Like A Virgin
Material Girl
Crazy For You
Into The Groove
Live To Tell
Papa Don’t Preach
Open Your Heart
La Isla Bonita
Like A Prayer
Express Yourself
Cherish
Vogue
Justify My Love
Rescue Me

immaculate-collection-vhs-1

The music video collection included the following clips:

Lucky Star
Borderline
Like A Virgin
Material Girl
Papa Don’t Preach
Open Your Heart
La Isla Bonita
Like A Prayer
Express Yourself
Cherish
Oh Father
Vogue
Vogue (live at the 1990 MTV Video Music Awards)

If you could change The Immaculate Collection, what would you do?

Today in Madonna History: November 12, 1984

madonna-like-a-virgin-november-12-1 madonna-like-a-virgin-november-12-2 madonna-like-a-virgin-november-12-3 madonna-like-a-virgin-november-12-4 madonna-like-a-virgin-november-12-5 madonna-like-a-virgin-november-12-6 madonna-like-a-virgin-november-12-7 madonna-like-a-virgin-november-12-8

On November 12 1984, Madonna’s Like A Virgin album was released by Sire Records.  The album was re-released worldwide in 1985, to include the bonus track, Into the Groove.

The original track listing for Madonna’s second album included:

Material Girl
Angel
Like A Virgin
Over & Over
Love Don’t Live Here Anymore
Dress You Up
Shoo-Bee-Doo
Pretender
Stay

The cover sleeve and album insert images were shot by Steven Meisel. The first shot in this post was used for the album cover. The rest of the photos in this post are outtakes from the same photo shoot.

Today in Madonna History: November 11, 1985

virgin-tour-live-vhs-1

On November 11 1985, Madonna Live: The Virgin Tour was released on home video in the U.K. and France. The concert was filmed on May 25th, 1985 at Cobo Arena in Madonna’s home town of Detroit, Michigan. The concert film was directed by Daniel Kleinman and the music was produced by Madonna & Patrick Leonard.

At the beginning of the video Madonna declares:

“I went to New York. I had a dream. I wanted to be a big star, I didn’t know anybody, I wanted to dance, I wanted to sing, I wanted to do all those things, I wanted to make people happy, I wanted to be famous, I wanted everybody to love me. I wanted to be a star. I worked really hard, and my dream came true.”

The live performances of Like A Virgin and Dress You Up were released as music videos on MTV to promote the live video release.  Both videos were nominated for Best Choreography at the 1986 MTV Video Music Awards.

Though it was also released on laserdisc in some countries, to date it has sadly not been officially reissued on DVD.

Today in Madonna History: November 10, 1995

something-to-remember-japan-1 something-to-remember-japan-2 something-to-remember-japan-3 something-to-remember-japan-4 something-to-remember-japan-5

On November 10 1995, Madonna’s Something to Remember was released in Japan under the title Best of Madonna: Ballad Collection.

The Japanese release included Madonna’s 1986 hit La Isla Bonita as a bonus track.

La Isla Bonita was re-released three months prior to the compilation as a double A-side record with Human Nature, the final single from Bedtime Stories. Receiving gold certification from the Recording Industry Association of Japan (RIAJ), the song was added to Something to Remember track listing in the hope of boosting the album sales in the Japanese region.

%d bloggers like this: