On April 3 2023, Madonna paid her respects to Seymour Stein, who died at age 80 on April 2 after a long battle with cancer. Seymour was responsible for signing Madonna to Sire Records in 1983. Stein also signed the Cure, the Smiths, Talking Heads, the Ramones, the Pretenders, Depeche Mode, Lou Reed, Ice-T, the Replacements, Aphex Twins and many more. He also helped found the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.
Here is Madonna’s message as posted to social media:
Seymour Stein Has Left Us! I need to catch my breath.
He Was one of the most influential Men in my Life!! He changed and Shaped my world. I must Explain.
I stalked a DJ named Mark Kamin- for a year at a club called Danceteria! In the Early 80’s. He finally agreed to play my demo of a song called “Everybody” on a Saturday night.
The Club was packed. An A&R man from SIRE records was there—Michael Rosenblatt.
He heard the music and asked me if he could bring me to meet his boss Seymour Stein.
I Couldn’t get the words “Hell Yes”! out of my mouth fast enough!
Unfortunately Seymour was in the hospital for a Heart Ailment!
I didn’t care. Lets Goooooo! When I met him he was laying in a hospital bed wearing his boxer shorts and a wife beater! He had a cannula up his nose and a saline Drip in his arm! He was grinning like the Cheshire Cat. I was carrying my giant boombox ready to play My cassette for him immediately! He smiled and laughed when he saw me and asked me if I was related to the Virgin Mary!! Hahahhahahaa. I knew we would hit it off. I played him the song a few times. He signed me to his record label that day!!
This moment changed the course of my Life Forever. And was the beginning of my journey as a Musical Artist. Not only did Seymour hear me but he Saw me and my Potential! For this I will be eternally grateful!
I am weeping as I write this down. Words cannot describe how I felt at this moment after years of grinding and being broke and getting every door slammed in my face.
Anyone who knew Seymour knew about his passion for music and his impeccable taste. He had an Ear like no other! He was Intense -Wickedly Funny-a little bit Crazy And Deeply intuitive.
Dearest Seymour you will never be forgotten!! Thank You! Thank you Thank you! 🙏🏼 💙 Shine on!!!