Today in Madonna History: March 26, 1983

On March 26 1983, the music video for Madonna’s Everybody was briefly mentioned in Billboard magazine along side the music video for Konk’s Konk Party, noting that both videos were directed by Ed Steinberg of Soft Focus Productions. What is not mentioned and likely not known to the columnist (considering they think Madonna is the name of a group!) is that Madonna appears as an extra in Konk Party along with her pals Erika Belle and Martin Burgoyne. Original Sonic Youth drummer and member of Konk, Richard Edson, is also featured in the video. Edson would later appear in the film Desperately Seeking Susan, holding open a newspaper box for Madonna. He is also pictured prominently next to Madonna in the film’s cast photo – which is unusual considering the brevity of his time on-screen.

Sonic Youth would explore their own fascination with Madonna with their side project, Ciccone Youth. In liner notes for Sonic Youth’s reissue of their landmark album, Daydream Nation (1988), the band revealed that they had given an advance copy of Ciccone Youth’s The Whitey Album (1988) to Madonna’s sister, who was working in Warner’s art department at the time, seeking Madonna’s approval for the use of her image on the album cover (her songs Into The Groove & Burning Up were also covered & sampled). Word came back that Madonna had no issues with it, adding that she remembered the band from their early days in New York.

Sonic Youth made humourous references to Madonna’s place in popular culture in their promotional artwork throughout the 80’s – typically designed by bassist/vocalist/guitarist and visual artist, Kim Gordon. They were even known to use Madonna’s music as interludes during guitar changes at their shows in the 80’s, bewildering audience members who were not privy to their shared origins as part of the early 80’s underground music scene in NYC.

In another connection, Sonic Youth’s 2004 album, Sonic Nurse, featured artwork from Richard Prince’s acclaimed Nurse Paintings series. In 2015, Madonna used a rotating selection of paintings from her own art collection as backdrops for a series of press junket interviews to promote her Rebel Heart album. One of the paintings displayed was Prince’s Heartbreak Nurse from his Nurse Paintings series.

Today in Madonna History: February 26, 1983

On February 26 1983, Madonna’s first single, Everybody, spent its 17th and final week on Billboard’s Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart in the USA. Everybody reached #3 on the chart on November 6, 1982. In addition to spending 17 weeks on the Hot Dance/Club Play chart, the classic dance hit also spent 8 weeks on the Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles chart. Not bad for a first single!

Today In Madonna History: February 5, 1983

On February 5 1983, Madonna’s Everybody charted at #37 on Billboard’s Dance Club Songs (later renamed the Hot Dance Music/Club Play) chart in the USA.

Madonna’s reaction to the first time she heard Everybody on the radio:

“I was living on the Upper West Side, 99th and Riverside, and about 7:00 at night I had the radio on in my bedroom, on WKTU, and I heard ‘Everybody‘. I said ‘Oh, my God, that’s me coming out of that box.’ It was an amazing feeling.”

Today in Madonna History: January 26, 1983

On January 26 1983, Madonna performed a track date at the Red Parrot at 617 West 57th St in New York City. Also featured on the bill were Planet Rock and Man Parrish.

While unconfirmed, the setlist likely would have previewed the soon-to-be-released Physical Attraction & Burning Up (which were recorded in November, 1982) along with her then-current club hit, Everybody.

A review of the night’s performances was featured in the February 12 1983 issue of Billboard Magazine (pictured with the show’s flyer above).

It may have been the first but it would be far from the last review in which Madonna’s musical talent would be minimized in retribution for her strong visual presence, among other things. Unlike Elvis or Michael Jackson, female artists are often criticized for flaunting the same qualities that make heros out of their male counterparts; for daring to be more than one-dimensional artists. While Madonna is not the first or the last female artist to break through these barriers – and her mission is indeed still a work in progress – one only needs to flip through the pages of Billboard magazine on both sides of the 1983 cultural divide to witness the scope of her impact on music and popular culture.

Today in Madonna History: October 6, 1982

On October 6 1982, Madonna’s debut single, Everybody, was released on Sire Records.

Happy 35th anniversary, Everybody! Dance and sing, get up and do your thing!

 

Today in Madonna History: January 22, 1983

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On January 22 1983, Everybody peaked on Billboard’s Bubbling Under singles chart in the U.S., spending the first of three consecutive weeks at #107. Although the song managed to bubble under for a total of eight weeks, it didn’t gain enough support from mainstream radio to break into the Hot 100.

Today in Madonna History: November 15, 2005

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On November 15 2005, Madonna performed an intimate club show for roughly 1,500 contest winners and guests at KOKO in London’s Camden Town district. The event was held to celebrate the release of her album, Confessions On A Dance Floor.

While roughly 200 fans queued overnight to secure a spot near the stage for the gig, fans around the world were able to enjoy a live stream of the performance online.

VIP guests in attendance included Sir Bob Geldof and his late daughter Peaches, Stella McCartney, Guy Ritchie and Pet Shop Boys’ Neil Tennant.

Madonna’s very first promotional concert in London was held at the same venue – then named Camden Palace – in October of 1983.

Setlist

  • Hung Up
  • Get Together
  • I Love New York
  • Let It Will Be
  • Everybody
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