On May 11 1987, Madonna and Griffin Dunne were featured on the cover of People Magazine with a photo taken from the then-forthcoming film, Who’s That Girl.
In May 2014, Griffin was asked the following question by Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine):
Was Madonna difficult to work with in Who’s That Girl?
Griffin Dunne: No, not at all. She was very funny. We actually had a lot of laughs making that movie. She was just enormously famous. I think all of our scenes that were shot outdoors had to be re-recorded because the sky was just filled with helicopters, and photographers followed her everywhere she went. But she had a real sense of humor about it. She enjoyed all that, I thought, in a pretty healthy way.
On May 9 1987, Nick Kamen’s self-titled debut album – featuring the Madonna/Steve Bray written & produced track, Each Time You Break My Heart – was reviewed in Billboard.
Madonna’s opinion of Nick Kamen in 1986? “I said, ‘wow, this guy’s got everything’,” she told the BBC’s Simon Bates in December that year. “He [Stein] sent me a tape of four of his songs and the Levi commercial and a demo video that he [Kamen] had done,” Madonna told Bates. “You know, he’s got so much charm and charisma and there’s something there in the eyes…”
Kamen’s debut single, Each Time You Break My Heart, on which Madonna also performed backing vocals – was an international hit in the autumn of 1986. “I called Seymour up and said ‘how about if I produce the record because if I don’t…they might change the character of it…and I want it to be really good…and he said, ‘I would have asked you but, I mean, I didn’t think you’d have the time’, but I figured it was only one song so it would only take about a week if we really organize ourselves.”
The video for the single had other Madonna connections, as it was directed by Jean-Baptiste Mondino and featured her Open Your Heart video co-star, Felix Howard, while the U.S. maxi-single was remixed by future Madonna collaborator, Shep Pettibone.
Each Time You Break My Heart was originally demoed during the sessions for Madonna’s True Blue album but sadly did not make the final cut. Kamen’s version featured the same musicians and backing vocalists (including Siedah Garrett & Edie Lehmann) from those sessions. A low-quality recording of Madonna’s original demo leaked to the internet in the early 2000’s.
Madonna fans would certainly welcome a deluxe edition of the True Blue album featuring Madonna’s version of this excellent cut and other outtakes of the era!
On February 7 1987, Open Your Heart hit #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the U.S. It was the 4th international single release from the True Blue album.
The single’s b-side, White Heat, was inspired by the 1949 Warner Bros. film of the same name starring James Cagney, to whom Madonna dedicated the song. Interspersed with dialogue taken directly from the film, Madonna’s lyrics put her love of double entendre to clever use as she compares the film’s themes of trust and betrayal among gang members to affairs of the heart.
White Heat was written and produced by Madonna & Patrick Leonard and was one of the earlier songs developed for the True Blue album, along with Open Your Heart. The initial copyright registration, submitted to the Library Of Congress in 1985, lists the song under its original title, Get Up Stand Tall.
Both songs were performed during 1987’s Who’s That Girl Tour. White Heat was also featured as the b-side for the single, Who’s That Girl, released in the summer of 1987.
On December 4 1987, Madonna filed for divorce from Sean Penn in Los Angeles County Superior Court, California. Twelve days later, Madonna withdrew the divorce papers and the couple stayed together until January 5 1989, when Madonna filed new divorce papers citing “irreconcilable differences”.
Jay’s Note: I often wondered why Madonna released You Can Dance with so little promotion behind it (You Can Dance was released November 17/1987). Understanding that her personal life was falling apart at the time, it makes sense that she wouldn’t have been concerned with releasing singles or filming music videos to promote the remix collection.
I also found this quote from her about You Can Dance:
“I don’t know that I like it, people screwing with my records, remixing them. The jury is out on it for me. But the fans like it, and really, this one was for the fans, for the kids in the clubs who like these songs and wanted to hear them in a new, fresh way.”