On June 1 1990, Madonna was controversially featured grabbing her crotch and breast on the cover of Interview magazine.
Madonna was interviewed by Glenn O’Brien at the Disney Studios, where she was rehearsing the Blond Ambition Tour. Here’s a snippet from the interview:
Glenn: Let’s talk about your show.
Madonna: Let’s not. Today was a horrible day. That was the worst rehearsal.
Glenn: Well, I liked it, but I haven’t seen it when you thought it was good. I loved the number where you’re lying on the piano singing a torch song.
Madonna: You saw only one segment of the show. I’ve created five different worlds, and the set is all based on hydraulics. One is going down and another is coming up. The world changes completely. I think of it more as a musical than as a rock concert. There is a straightforward Metropolis section, like my Express Yourself video – that set with all the gears and machinery; it’s very hard and metallic. That’s the heavy-duty dance music. Then the set changes and it’s like a church. We call it the temple ruins. It’s all these columns, trays of votive candles, a cross. I do Like a Virgin on a bed, but we changed the arrangement, so it sounds Indian. Then I’m being punished for masturbation on this bed, which is, as you know, what happens. Then we do the more serious, religious-type material – Like a Prayer, Papa Don’t Preach… Then it changes to what you saw, this Art Deco ’50s-musical set. That’s when we do three songs from Dick Tracy, and then after that we do what I call the camp section. Then it gets really serious again and we go into our Clockwork Orange cabaret set.
On May 22 2001, VH1 published their list of 100 Most Shocking Moments in Rock ‘N Roll. Madonna appeared on the list twice:
#87 – Madonna scandalizes with her Like A Prayer video (1989)
- #11 – Madonna bares all in her racy SEX book (1992)
On May 13 1989, Madonna’s Like A Prayer single peaked at #4 on Billboard’s Hot Adult Contemporary chart in the USA. The hit single also peaked on the Hot R&B Single Sales at #18 and the Hot R&B Singles & Tracks chart at #20 during the same week.
On May 1 1989, Like A Prayer spent its second week at #1 on the Canadian Top 100 Singles chart published by RPM magazine.
The Like A Prayer single would spend four consecutive weeks in the top spot, becoming Madonna’s longest-running #1 on the Canadian Top 100 Singles chart until 1994 when I’ll Remember spent five consecutive weeks at #1.
On March 3 1989, Madonna’s Like A Prayer single was released.
Patrick Leonard had this to say about Like A Prayer:
“I think there was a point when we realized that it was the title track, and the lead track, and it was going to be a powerhouse. It became obvious that there was something unique about it. And that somehow we made this thing work: with its stopping and starting, and a minimalistic rhythmic thing, and the verses, and these bombastic choruses, and this giant choir comes in. This is ambitious, you know?”