Today in Madonna History: May 29, 1995

On May 29 1995, Alek Keshishian filmed Madonna in a Japanese television commercial for Takara, a shochu or Japanese sake manufacturer. The sake, called Jun Legend, was made by blending two types of alcohol distilled from barley and corn and aging them in charred oak barrels for one to five years. Takara’s claim was that the sake tasted similar to whiskey.

Madonna wrote and sang the commercial’s jingle, which featured the lyrics: “How can I be pure, when all the strength I have is breaking me? How can I be sure, where is this road I’ve chosen taking me? I’m pure. Jun Legend.”

 

Today in Madonna History: May 16, 1988

On May 16 1988, Madonna’s Spotlight reached a peak of #3 on the Oricon International Singles Chart in Japan. The single was released on 7″ vinyl and 3″ mini CD single by Sire and Warner-Pioneer Japan on April 25 1988.

Spotlight was originally planned to be included on the True Blue album, but was cut from the line-up and eventually appeared on Madonna’s You Can Dance remix album, released on November 17 1988.

The song was written by Madonna, Stephen Bray and Curtis Hudson.  The song was remixed by Shep Pettibone, with additional mixing done by John “Jellybean” Benitez.

Today in Madonna History: November 28, 1993

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On November 28 1993, Madonna’s Bye Bye Baby single was released in Japan to coincide with the Japanese leg of her Girlie Show world tour.

The 3″ CD snap pack included 2 tracks:

  • Bye Bye Baby
  • Rain (Radio Remix)

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Today in Madonna History: October 10, 1984

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On October 10 1984, Madonna’s first EP, Like A Virgin & Other Big Hits!, was released in Japan through Sire Records.

Although three of the include singles (Holiday, Lucky Star and Borderline) had been released before, Like A Virgin would not be released as a single until November 6 1984.

The EP included the following tracks:

  • Like a Virgin (Extended Dance Remix)
  • Holiday (Album Version)
  • Lucky Star (Extended Dance Remix)
  • Borderline (Extended Dance Remix)

Like A Virgin & Other Big Hits! was re-released in 2016 as part of Record Store Day releases. The Record Store Day version was printed on pink vinyl.  lav-obhits-6

Today in Madonna History: April 6, 1998

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On April 6 1998, an exclusive studio performance of Frozen was broadcast during the Hey! Music Awards II on Fuji-TV in Japan. Madonna was also honoured with an award during the ceremony, and offered the taped performance and acceptance speech in lieu of attendance.

Today in Madonna History: January 22, 2016

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On January 22 2016, the Japanese Tour Edition of Madonna’s Rebel Heart album was released (Catalog No: UICS-9152).

The Tour Edition included a bonus DVD with four music videos. The DVD disc was encoded for region 2 (Japan, Europe and Middle East), and no subtitles were included.

The Rebel Heart CD included the following tracks:

  • Living For Love
  • Devil Pray
  • Ghosttown
  • Unapologetic Bitch
  • Illuminati
  • Bitch I’m Madonna feat. Nicki Minaj
  • Hold Tight
  • Joan of Arc
  • Iconic feat. Chance The Rapper & Mike Tyson
  • HeartBreakCity
  • Body Shop
  • Holy Water
  • Inside Out
  • Wash All Over Me
  • Best Night
  • Veni Vedi Vici feat. Nas
  • S.E.X.
  • Messiah
  • Rebel Heart
  • Living For Love (Dirty Pop Remix)

The bonus DVD included the following music videos:

  • Living For Love
  • Ghosttown
  • Bitch I’m Madonna feat. Nicki Minaj
  • Bitch I’m Madonna (Sander Kleinenberg Remix) feat. Nicki Minaj

Today in Madonna History: November 26, 1987

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On November 26 1987, Who’s That Girl – Live In Japan was released on VHS and LaserDisc by Warner-Pioneer Video, exclusively for the Japanese market. Recorded in Tokyo on June 22 1987, the show initially aired as a television special in Japan in conjunction with Madonna’s sponsorship agreement with Mitsubishi. The special was the first ever television broadcast to make use of Dolby Surround Sound technology.

Elements of the Japanese release were also incorporated into the international 1988 release of the Who’s That Girl World Tour, Ciao Italia: Live From Italy, which was also released in Japan on LaserDisc in 1988 and on DVD in 2001. Meanwhile, the complete Live In Japan release has since been deleted from circulation.

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