Today in Madonna History: April 18, 1985

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On April 18 1985, Desperately Seeking Susan hit number-five at the U.S. box office, bringing its total U.S. gross to $8,488,528 to date at the time (it would eventually earn over $27,000,000 at the box office). The film had screened in 760 theaters across the country for the week ending April 18th.

Today in Madonna History: April 6, 1985

On April 6 1985, Material Girl peaked at #4 on the Canadian Top 100 Singles chart by RPM magazine.

Today in Madonna History: February 15, 1985

Vision Quest (Coreman) 2 550 Vision Quest (Coreman) 1 550

On February 15 1985, the Vision Quest original motion picture soundtrack was released on Geffen Records. To promote the release, music videos for Crazy For You and Gambler premiered on MTV on the same day.

Despite Gambler only being released as a single in markets outside North America, its video received moderate rotation from MTV nonetheless – possibly due to the fact that there were no competing videos produced for the final two singles from Like A Virgin.

Gambler was Madonna’s last entirely self-written single until the 2007 release of the charity single, Hey You. Other singles for which she received sole writing credit include Everybody (which was in fact a Stephen Bray co-write–however a publishing arrangement granted him sole credit for another of their collaborations, Ain’t No Big Deal, in trade), Burning Up, Lucky Star and Sidewalk Talk. Album tracks Think Of Me, I Know It and Shoo-Bee-Doo were also entirely self-written.

Gambler LOC entry 550

A third Madonna song that was recorded for the Vision Quest soundtrack, Warning Signs, was eventually dropped from the project. A cassette copy of the song, which is also credited to Madonna alone, was submitted to the Library of Congress for copyright registration in February of 1984, at the same time as Gambler.

Warning Signs LOC entry 550

With Stephen Bray having confirmed his involvement in the song’s production (which he described as “a cool synth track”), it appears that its production credits would mirror those of Gambler, which was produced by Jellybean Benitez and arranged by Bray. Given that early press for Vision Quest (including an on-set interview with Madonna herself) mentioned the inclusion of three new songs, footage of Madonna performing Warning Signs was likely filmed but ended up on the cutting room floor. Surprisingly, this additional footage has never resurfaced and the song has never leaked.

Today in Madonna History: February 5, 1985

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On February 5 1985, Madonna’s Like A Virgin was certified 3x platinum (for sales of 3 million units) in the USA.

Today in Madonna History: January 10, 1985

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On January 10 1985, Madonna began filming the Material Girl music video in Los Angeles, California.  The video was directed by Mary Lambert. Madonna met Sean Penn on the set.

In a 1987 interview with New York Daily News, Madonna talked about the concept for the video:

“My favorite scene in all of Marilyn Monroe’s movies is when she does that dance sequence for ‘Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend’. And when it came time to do the video for the song Material Girl, I said, I can just redo that whole scene and it will be perfect. Marilyn was made into something not human in a way, and I can relate to that. Her sexuality was something everyone was obsessed with and that I can relate to. And there were certain things about her vulnerability that I’m curious about and attracted to.”

Reflecting on the song, Madonna told author J. Randy Taraborrelli:

“I can’t completely disdain the song and the video, because they certainly were important to my career. But talk about the media hanging on a phrase and misinterpreting the damn thing as well. I didn’t write that song, you know, and the video was about how the girl rejected diamonds and money. But God forbid irony should be understood. So when I’m ninety, I’ll still be the Material Girl. I guess it’s not so bad. Lana Turner was the Sweater Girl until the day she died.”

Today in Madonna History: December 14, 1985

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On December 14 1985, Dress You Up peaked at #5 on the UK singles chart.

It was Madonna’s eighth UK Top-5 hit of 1985:

  1. Like A Virgin  #3
  2. Material Girl  #3
  3. Crazy For You  #2
  4. Into The Groove  #1
  5. Holiday (re-release)  #2
  6. Angel  #5
  7. Gambler  #4
  8. Dress You Up  #5

Today in Madonna History: October 26, 1985

On October 26 1985, Madonna’s sassily self-written soundtrack slice, Gambler, peaked at #4 in the UK.

You could be taking your chances on this hidden gem once again, Madonna.

We know you want to.

Come on.

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