On November 30 1980, Madonna’s band, Emmy, recorded a four-song studio demo which was later distributed on TDK cassettes around New York City.
Band member and songwriting partner, Stephen Bray, was asked to describe what he remembered from these songs in a 1998 interview with Bruce Baron for Goldmine magazine, and he commented on each this way:
- (I Like) Love For Tender – “Sort of our Byrds thing. Nice song, arrangement was too long though.”
- No Time – “This was a giddy, up-tempo romp with drums and rhythm section stuff inspired by the fast playing Police and XTC attitude, but with a pop top.”
- Bells Ringing – “Our most psychedelic number I recall, too long again. It had a definite Stones-ish attitude.”
- Drowning – “The best tune of the moment, I always thought.”
These four early Madonna tunes-I Like Love for Tender, No Time, Bells Ringing and Drowning-are clear evidence of Madonna’s Rock roots-and I’m hoping that when The First Album gets reissued, remastered and expanded, these four songs will be on it.