Saturday, March 21, 2015

REBEL HEART TOUR : MANY OF THE SHOWS ARE SOLDOUT




NEW YORK, NY – March 21, 2015 – The infamous Material Girl announced her Rebel Heart World Tour to spectacular reviews, driving massive concert ticket sales for the 38 cities on the tour, says online ticket broker ConcertBank.com. Despite hints in the media that Madonna ticket sales were lagging from prior years, the ticket supplier has seen a definite uptick in demand for Madonna concert tickets in the wake of the artist’s tour debut.

When it comes to concert ticket sales, Madonna’s history is hard to beat. In 2012, the Material Girl sold out Yankee Stadium in 20 minutes for her MDNA tour, making it one of the fastest sellouts in concert history. The MDNA tour also featured 88 sold-out shows. Madonna is no stranger to that kind of success. The MDNA tour, listed as the highest grossing concert tour of 2012, was just the latest in a long string of concert honors for the 56-year-old performer. She also held that honor in 2008 and 2009 for tickets to her aptly named Sticky and Sweet tour.

This year’s Rebel Heart World Tour is in support of Madonna’s 13th studio album, Rebel Heart, which UK critic Neil McCormick has dubbed her “best album in years.” His review notes that the songs on the album veer between emotional vulnerability and strident defiance, and display the perennial performer’s chameleonic musical talents at their best.

Fans who are lucky enough to score Madonna Rebel Heart concert tickets can expect to hear many of her sizzling fan favorites, but will also be looking forward to hits off her newest album, including the aptly titled, “Bitch, I’m Madonna”, which features singer Nicki Minaj.

While the mainstream media has speculated about “slow ticket sales” for Madonna’s 2015 tour, third party ticket sites like ConcertBank.com aren’t noticing any sludge in the works. Premium Madonna tickets are selling briskly, says the site, with many venues may only showing listings for cheap concert tickets and less desirable single ticket sales.

In addition, many smaller venues across the country have already sold out Madonna tickets, leaving only ticket broker sites with any inventory. Fans who want to see the Material Girl on tour should check back frequently to find the best Madonna tickets, the site’s ownership says.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

TERRENCE HOWARD IN NEW MADONNA’S VIDEO “GHOSTTOWN”




Actor Terrence Howard, who starred in Dead Presidents and Mr. Holland’s Opus and is currently the star of Empire, will be seen up front and centre in Madonna’s new music video ‘Ghosttown’.

Howard once had had his own album ‘Shine Though It’ in 2006. It reached no. 31 on America’s Billboard chart. Howard plays record company mogul Lucious Lyon in the hit drama Empire. His character is a former drug dealer turned hip hop mogul and the CEO of Empire Entertainment.

Madonna is making her new video with Howard this week in Los Angeles, while she is in town for a week of guest spots on the Ellen Degeneres show.

The ‘Ghosttown’ video is being directed Jonas Äkerlund, who also directed ‘Ray Of Light’, ‘Music’ and ‘American Life’ for Madonna.

Madonna’s ‘Rebel Heart’ debuted at number one on Australia’s ARIA chart this week after selling 6,962 copies. The album will debut at no. 1 in the USA later this week with sales around 92,000.

Source : Noise

Monday, March 9, 2015

Madonna to perform on iHeartRadio Music Awards and Howard Stern Show




Jamie Foxx will host the 2015 iHeartRadio Music Awards, live from the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles Sunday, March 29th on NBC. The announcement came Monday morning, along with a star-studded list of performers and artists to appear on the show, and it’s going to be a big one!

Rihanna, Iggy Azalea, Sam Smith, Madonna, Jason Aldean, Jamie Foxx, Meghan Trainor, Jason Derulo, Jennifer Hudson, Kelly Clarkson, Snoop Dogg, Nate Ruess, Alesso and Florida Georgia Line will all perform along with appearances from Taylor Swift and more to be announced. This year’s iHeartRadio Music Awards will also feature unexpected collaborations from some of the top names in music.

The 2015 iHeartRadio Music Awards air live Sunday, March 29th at 8pm ET/PT on NBC, and will be broadcast simultaneously on iHeartMedia stations nationwide and across the iHeartRadio digital music platform.
iHeartRadio

This Wednesday the show moves to 1p EST for a special live show with @Madonna! #MadonnaOnHoward #WestCoastFeed

REVIEW : MADONNA – ALWAYS IN VOGUE




Many pop acts, and most female pop artists, inextricably link themselves to youth. Stars exploit the beauty, rebelliousness and vogue of a fresh bloom, the connection with the obsessiveness of teen culture, to become icons.

The problem is people age. Even Madonna. Maybe especially Madonna, under the hot lights of three decades of scrutiny.

I wish Madonna didn’t carry the burden of being 56 in a world where Britney is ancient at 33, because Madge’s new album is her best this century. If we could forget how old she looks (she could barely pass for 45, gasp!) or how last month’s Grammy performance was less than awesome, we could focus on how great “Rebel Heart” is.

“Rebel Heart” rolls forward Madonna’s expanding, innovative approach of finding bridges between her classic ’80s and ’90s aesthetic and current sonic trends. Like 2012’s “MDNA,” a good record in itself, she continues her introspection on her 13th studio album, out Tuesday (to fit our maddening, modern age, there are two different deluxe editions with bonus tracks). But between the self-examination she doesn’t forget to have fun. Would Madonna ever forget fun?

Thwarting a leak, Madonna released six of the 14 tracks in December. “True Blue” fans got a hook and harmony reminiscent of old-school Top 40 in “Living for Love” — a joyful, fresh and nostalgia-inducing single to compare with her best. They also got choice album cuts that, with help from producers du jour Kanye West, Diplo, Avicii and Billboard, explored EDM tricks, lyrics obsessed with the divine (some things don’t change) and catchy choruses.

The other eight songs continue the delicious balance of Material Girl and modern Madge. “Iconic” begins with a sample of Mike Tyson ranting about his unparalleled skills before dropping down into a club-thumping beat with slippery, wicked verse from Chance the Rapper (who was born 10 years after Madonna debuted in ’83). Getting into her specialty, “Holy Water” blends sex with the sacred and includes a well-placed snippet of “Vogue.”

Not everything is great. Actually, not everything is good. This is a modern pop album, so there are songs that should be cut to make the music fit on two sides of vinyl — I nominate “HeartBreakCity,” “Inside Out” and “Wash All Over Me.”

Don’t expect another “Like a Prayer.” She’ll never equal that (nor will Katy Perry, Taylor Swift or Maroon 5). But ignore the eternal gossip around Madonna’s personal life, close your ears to suggestions she’s too old to be relevant, and embrace the mix of the exotic and familiar. Her still impressive blond ambition remains one of pop’s great voices.



Source : BostonHerald

Saturday, March 7, 2015

REBEL HEART : A CONFIRMATION OF MADONNA’S SUSTAINED MUSICAL RELEVANCE




If any confirmation were required of Madonna’s sustained cultural relevance, it was surely provided by a mere wardrobe malfunction out-shining the combined micro-celebrity wattage of the entire Brit Awards line-up.

It’s fortunate, then, that this ironic triumph should be followed by confirmation of her musical relevance. Rebel Heart capitalises on the comeback charm of 2012’s MDNA, and in places repeats aspects of its success. Nicki Minaj reprises her role as Madge’s rapping henchgirl on the amusingly abrasive “Bitch I’m Madonna”; and Madonna again slips sly hints of hits such as “Vogue” into the arrangements, like straps binding the material to her legacy.

The most welcome reminders are those which recall the career-apex achievements of Like a Prayer, particularly “Devil Pray” and album closer “Wash All Over Me” – the latter mining a resistant melancholy while the former urges the adoption of a deeper spirituality not dependent on drugs. A less reverential employment of religious imagery, however, occurs in the controversy-courting cunnilingus anthem “Holy Water”, where she proclaims, “Bless yourself and genuflect/Jesus loves my p***y best.”

But if the lyrics mine familiar tropes of sex, dance, religion and celebrity, the music pushes out from her electropop template, with the brittle beats and wheezing dubstep electronic flourishes augmented by the kalimba groove of “Body Shop”, the choral responses of “Heartbreak City” and the Middle Eastern drone of “Best Night”.

The inventive Diplo is a frequent collaborator, with support from Avicii, Michael Diamond and Kanye, but what’s most impressive is Madonna’s singing, which for the most part eschews the excessive vocal treatments of R&B in favour of a simple clarity, which, on “Ghosttown” and “Joan of Arc”, recalls the purity of Karen Carpenter.

It’s a sonic nakedness that’s more revealing than any flirty flash of boob or buttock.

Source : Independent

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Madonna: The Last True Icon!




Stunning! March 2/2015 Paris.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Pitchfork Interviews Madonna.

Pitchfork: You have worked in lots of different mediums—acting, directing, theater, philanthropy—but always come back to pop music as your primary means of expression.

Madonna: Yes, my home base—pop music and the Catholic Church.

Pitchfork: And sex.

M: [laughs] Yes. Why not? All three together, if possible.

Pitchfork: What makes pop music such a powerful medium for you?

M: It’s very primal. It’s also like poetry, when it’s good. I like that you have four minutes to zero in on something and evoke a specific feeling and take people on some sort of journey. When I discovered that I could write music, it felt like the most natural way for me to connect with people and tell my stories. I’ve always thought of that as what I do: I tell stories.


Pitchfork: I was really surprised by this new record. To be honest, I was also kind of relieved…

M: That you didn’t hate it? [laughs]

Pitchfork: Yes, actually. I mean, you never know…

M: Totally. That’s to be expected.

Pitchfork: This is your 13th studio album. Do you tend to go into the making of a record with a sense of what you want the record to be, or does that reveal itself as things unfold?

M: Generally I start by choosing producers to work with, which determines the direction the overall sound is going to go in. But this time around, my goal from the very beginning was just to write good songs that don’t require any production to be felt or understood. I wanted to be able to sit in a room with a guitar and play the song from beginning to end and have it be as impactful as if you heard the studio version with all the bells and whistles. In the beginning I was writing songs with Avicii, whom everyone associates with EDM, but I worked with his team of writers and everything was very simple—vocals and piano, vocals and guitar. It almost had a folk feeling to it.

It wasn’t until I got about halfway through the album that I started thinking about sounds, and that’s where Diplo came in. He started adding these monster beats and punch-you-in-the-stomach bass sounds and 808s like you’ve never heard before, and that pushed me in a certain direction. Then I looked at the songs I had that still didn’t have producers and started asking around for people I thought it would be fun to work with.

I wanted to work with a hip-hop producer, but not a conventional hip-hop producer, and DJ Dahi had worked on a Kendrick Lamar record that I really liked. Then [Diplo] brought Blood Diamonds into the picture, and I’d never heard of him before. It was like a train that started moving: Along the way, new people would get on while other people would get off for a while only to return again later. So not only was I the primary songwriter, but I was also the schedule keeper trying to manage the comings and goings of crazy DJs who all have ADD. [laughs]

Pitchfork: When I was listening to the record I started to make a division between the “party” songs and the “personal” songs—the party versus the personal…

M: Party versus funeral. [laughs]

Pitchfork: I found myself much more drawn to the personal songs.

M: Which song in particular?

Pitchfork: “Joan of Arc”, for example. Maybe it’s just because…

M: You feel like a martyred saint? [laughs]

Pitchfork: I was gonna say because I’m a 40-something gay dude—same thing. I was just drawn to the songs that seem to deal with getting older, making sense of things.

M: I can understand that.

Pitchfork: You’ve never been afraid to put yourself out there in terms of talking about provocative topics like sex or religion, but is it somehow scarier to talk about your personal, intimate feelings?

M: Hm. I think “scary” is probably the wrong word. You just have to be ready. You know, I just don’t ever want to sound like a victim, or like a person that is feeling sorry for themselves. However, I did want to share some aspects of my life experiences that were painful that I think people can relate to—especially in this age of social media where people can hide behind the Internet to say a lot of disparaging, hateful, discriminatory things to other people. It’s not that people got crazier or more hateful, it’s just that now people have the courage to say stuff without any fear. As much good as it does, social media can also encourage stupidity and degradation.

Do you know [‘60s poet] Anne Sexton? I worship her. She came up in a tough time, and she definitely wasn’t encouraged to be a poet or to speak her mind or reveal anything personal. When I made Truth or Dare, I got so much shit from people for everything, for allowing cameras to follow me around all the time. Can you imagine, in this day and age?

Pitchfork: Now everyone has a camera following them at all times.

M: When that movie came out I was constantly referencing this Anne Sexton poem called “For John, Who Begs Me Not to Enquire Further”. She was given so much shit for being too personal in her work, but that poem is her way of saying, “Look, I don’t know how to do anything else.” That poem always gave me solace, especially at a time when everyone told me I was being crazy.

Pitchfork: What has inspired you recently in the realm of pop music?

M: To be honest, pop music isn’t exciting me too much right now. I mean, do you consider James Blake pop music? I love his music, some of his songs just kill me. He’s a great songwriter. It’s the kind of thing that makes me jealous, like, “Oh! I wish I’d made that!”

Pitchfork: You’ve talked about how having kids is like the best A&R, because they keep you up to date on what’s happening in the world.

M: Oh yeah, they’ve certainly turned me on to lots of great music.

Pitchfork: Are they harsh critics as well?

M: Yes. They’re like, “Please, Mom, no. Please stop. Oh, here she goes again…” And then I say, “Shut up, this is paying the bills!” [laughs]

Pitchfork: Two of your children are from Malawi, and I think it’s important to acknowledge the work you continue to do there.

M: Yes. My work there gives me a sense of purpose that I never really had before—it gives me a lot of joy, and it would be wonderful to invite other people to get involved. You witness extreme suffering but also extreme joy. I know it’s a cliche, but it really puts everything else in perspective. You just have to pour yourself a great big glass of “shut the fuck up” because you realize that you literally can’t complain about anything.

I love taking my kids there because not only does it stop them from ever complaining, it lets them become adults and takes them out of their comfort zone and they get to do this amazing work to help people. Being able to step outside of yourself in order to help someone else is why we’re all here, it’s what we should all be doing if we can. I don’t talk about this too much because I’m not in it so people can pat me on the back. Even when the former president there was trying to run me out of the country when we were trying to build schools and hospitals, it never stopped me, because I do this for love. It’s as important as anything I have ever done.

Pitchfork: You also really advocated for gay people—and talked openly about AIDS—at a time when not a lot of people were willing to do so.

M: Absolutely.

Pitchfork: I appreciate that you’ve been so supportive of my people.

M: [laughs] Your people? My people.

Pitchfork: Are you surprised by how radically things have changed, particularly in respect to things like gay marriage?

M: Well, it’s about time. I’m not surprised really. There are too many powerful, intelligent voices in the gay community for things not to change. So, I’m happy and I’m relieved. I feel vindicated.

Pitchfork: In preparation for this interview, I spent a lot of time watching lots of YouTube videos of your past performances…

M: Oh god, you must be so sick of me.

Pitchfork: Are you still excited about being on stage in front of people?

M: Yeah. I like coming up with these spectacular extravaganzas that will, hopefully, totally blow people away. But I also like the intimacy of stopping it all and sitting at the edge of the stage and connecting with individual people in the audience. Actually, I quite like the idea doing a different kind of tour—and don’t get any ideas because this is not gonna happen right now—where I would sing songs and play guitar and just have maybe one other musician out there with me; it’s just me and a guitar and a good bottle of wine. I could talk in between each song and tell stories, or do some of my stand-up comedy, which I’m actually quite good at. I love it when I see a stand-up comedian have some amazing back-and-forth dealing with a heckler in the audience. I could really have a field day with something like that. I don’t think you understand how funny I am—I mean, maybe not right now, but in general. I do some of my best stand-up comedy during sound checks.

Pitchfork: I always thought it might be frustrating how big stadium shows don’t allow for much spontaneity.

M: I actually always try to have a moment in my show where I can just lay down on stage and talk to people for a little while. Also, I like to fuck with people sometimes. [laughs] I might be responsible for as many gay marriages as I am for heterosexual divorces, because there have been circumstances where see couples in the audience and there is a husband sitting there with his arms crossed, looking bored out of his brain, while his wife is up on her feet dancing and having such a good time. I’ll stop the show and point them out and say, “Who’s that guy sitting down right now?” And she’ll reply, “Oh, he’s my husband.” And I say, “Divorce him—right now.” And then they do! Just kidding. I hope they don’t, really.

Pitchfork: Could you imagine a time when you wouldn’t want to tour or make records anymore?

M: This might be verging on a stupid question. [laughs] You might need to take a drink for that one. You know what, I’ll have a drink too. [pours tequila shots] Cheers! Here’s to a stupid question!

Pitchfork: Here’s to apparently never retiring!

M: Here’s to never retiring!

Source : Pitchfork


Madonna on the cover of Italian Vanity Fair.





Monday, March 2, 2015

Madonna announces Rebel Heart Tour Dates!

The list of Madonna concert dates for her highly anticipated 35-city ‘Rebel Heart’ Tour were officially announced today by Live Nation with the opening night scheduled for August 29th in Miami, Florida. Additional performances to follow include New York, LA, Chicago, Philadelphia, Boston, Vancouver, Montreal and several other cities including San Juan, Puerto Rico. Following the North American leg of the Rebel Heart Tour, Madonna will begin the UK/European series of dates on November 4th in Koln, Germany with stops in major cities including Barcelona, London, Paris and Glasgow amongst others. A complete list of tour dates follow this release. Tickets for The Rebel Heart Tour go on sale starting Monday, March 9th. Additional tour dates for Asia and Australia are expected to be announced soon. The Rebel Heart Tour is produced by Live Nation Global Touring.

“Madonna continues to be one of the most successful touring artists in history – her shows are legendary and we are thrilled to have her going back on tour,” Arthur Fogel, President – Global Touring and Chairman – Global Music.

The “Rebel Heart” Tour follows the March 9th release of Madonna’s Rebel Heart album on Interscope Records (Germany and Japan March 6; Europe/UK March 9; North America March 10). Rave reviews for Madonna’s 13th studio album include: The Sun (UK): “The Queen of Pop will reign again – Madonna is about to release her best album in 17 years and one of the greatest of her career.” NY Times: “They won’t experience the celebrity of Madonna the fashion statement but the Madonna who has kept us listening for decades: Madonna the musician”.

Following Madonna’s stunning performance on the Grammys, three songs from Rebel Heart topped the Global iTunes Chart. The multi-Grammy winner’s current single “Living For Love” is at No. 1 on the Billboard Dance Charts – her 44th time at the top spot. Madonna also recently performed on The Brits in London and is scheduled to appear and perform on The Ellen DeGeneres Show in the US for the entire week of March 16th. Other global TV performances include France’s Le Grand Journal on March 2nd, Italy’s ITV on Sunday March 8th, an interview on The Today Show on March 9th and 10th and a performance and interview on the Jonathan Ross ITV UK Special airing March 14th.

Along with extraordinary critical acclaim as an artist, songwriter and producer, Madonna’s reputation as one of the most successful live performers of all time speaks for itself. The 2008/2009 Sticky & Sweet tour is the highest grossing tour of all time for a solo artist and the 2012 MDNA tour was the most successful tour of that year.
General Sales for Madonna’s Rebel Heart Tour will go on sale starting Monday, March 9, 2015. From March 9th – March 30th every North American ticket purchased online will come with an exclusive digital download of the SUPER DELUXE version of “Rebel Heart” which includes 6 bonus tracks (including 4 previously unreleased studio tracks).

Icon is Madonna’s official fan club. Lifetime Legacy members of Icon will receive first access to tickets and VIP Packages starting March 3, 2015. Fans may purchase an “Icon Live Pass” today, which gives them access not only to ticket & VIP Package pre-sales, but also a free membership to Icon, the official Madonna fan club, access to a tour devoted forum and an exclusive tour gift. Fans who are already registered simply need to upgrade their account with the Icon Live Pass on Madonna.com.

Citi is the official card of Madonna’s Rebel Heart tour. For concerts in the United States and Paris, France, Citi cardmembers will have access to a presale beginning Wednesday, March 4 (10am) through Friday, March 6 (4pm) for applicable concerts going on sale to the general public on Monday, March 9; and a presale beginning Wednesday, March 11 (10am) through Friday, March 13th (5pm) for applicable concerts in the United States going on sale to the general public on Monday, March 16. For concerts in the United Kingdom, Citi cardmembers will have access to a presale beginning Wednesday, March 11 (10am) through Friday, March 13 (4pm) for applicable concerts going on sale to the general public on Monday, March 16. For complete presale details visit: www.citiprivatepass.com

North America:
Aug. 29 Miami, American Airlines Arena (on sale Mar. 9)
Sept. 2 Atlanta, Philips Arena (on sale Mar. 16)
Sept. 5 San Juan, P.R.. Coliseo de Puerto Rico (on sale Mar. 21)
Sept. 9 Montreal, Bell Centre On Sale Mar. 14
Sept. 12 Washington, D.C., Verizon Center (on sale Mar. 16)
Sept. 16 New York. Madison Square Garden (on sale Mar. 9)
Sept. 19 Brooklyn, Barclays Center (on sale Mar. 9)
Sept. 24 Philadelphia, Wells Fargo Center (on sale Mar. 16)
Sept. 26 Boston, TD Garden (on sale Mar. 16)
Sept. 28 Chicago, United Center (on sale Mar. 9)
Oct. 1 Detroit, Joe Louis Arena (on sale Mar. 23)
Oct. 3 Atlantic City, N.J. Boardwalk Hall (on sale Mar. 16)
Oct. 5 Toronto, Air Canada Centre (on sale Mar. 9)
Oct. 8 St. Paul, Xcel Energy Center (on sale Mar. 16)
Oct. 11 Edmonton, Rexall Place (on sale Mar. 9)
Oct. 14 Vancouver, B.C., Rogers Arena (on sale Mar. 9)
Oct. 17 Portland, Ore., MODA Center (on sale Mar. 23)
Oct. 19 San Jose, Calif., SAP Center at San Jose (on sale Mar. 9)
Oct. 22 Glendale, Ariz., Gila River Arena (on sale Mar. 23)
Oct. 24 Las Vegas, MGM Grand Garden Arena (on sale Mar. 16)
Oct. 27 Los Angeles, The Forum (on sale Mar. 16)

Europe-U.K.
Nov. 4 Koln, Germany, Lanxess Arena (on sale Mar. 16)
Nov. 7 Prague, CZ, O2 Arena (on sale Mar. 16)
Nov. 10 Berlin,Germany, Mercedes-Benz Arena (02 World) (on sale Mar. 16)
Nov. 14 Stockholm, Sweden, Tele 2 Arena (on sale Mar. 16)
Nov.17 Herning, Denmark, Jyske Bank Boxen (on sale Mar. 9)
Nov. 21 Turin, Italy, Pala Alpitour (on sale Mar. 16)
Nov. 24 Barcelona, Spain, Palau Sant Jordi (on sale Mar. 16)
Nov. 28 Antwerp, Belgium, Sportpaleis (on sale Mar. 9)
Dec. 1 London, UK, O2 Arena (on sale Mar. 16)
Dec. 5 Amsterdam, Holland, Ziggo Dome (on sale Mar. 9)
Dec. 9 Paris, France, Bercy (on sale Mar. 9)
Dec. 14 Manchester, UK, Manchester Arena (on sale Mar. 16)
Dec. 16 Birmingham, UK, Barclaycard Arena (on sale Mar. 16)
Dec. 20 Glasgow, Scotland, The SSE Hydro (on sale Mar. 16)

Madonna.com


Sunday, March 1, 2015

LIZ SMITH : MADONNA IS NOT LIKE OTHER GIRLS. AND NEVER WILL BE




“I LIVE my life like a masochist. Hearing my father say/’I told you so, I told you so. Why can’t you be like other girls? I said: ‘Oh no, that’s not me/And I don’t think it ever will be’.”

Those are some of Madonna’s lyrics from the title track of her upcoming “Rebel Heart” album.

Whatever Madonna does, whomever she marries, beds, or no matter how many children she has, whatever her age, she will never ever be like “other girls.”

Also, apparently, Madonna will never reconcile her issues with her dad. (One of the star’s most powerful songs, with an accompanying haunting video, was 1989’s “Oh, Father.”)

Madonna refuses to bow down to any tiresome convention relating to her art or to what is expected of a woman over 40. (Her recent accident on stage in London, wound up too tightly in a cape, causing her to fall, has unleashed the usual ageist trolling vitriol on social media. When did 56 become “old?”)

La Ciccone’s new album is a source of tremendous controversy already. Half of it was hacked and leaked, forcing the star to officially release six songs. The deluxe version of the disc contains 25 tunes. England’s most popular newspaper, The Sun, says “Rebel Heart” is the greatest album of Madonna’s long career, and reviews ten of the albums unreleased songs.

THE pop icon also decorates the cover of Rolling Stone magazine yet again, profiled by the excellent Brian Hiatt. (I keep waiting for Madonna to become “irrelevant” but somehow that never quite happens.) Madonna talks of many things — her chronic insomnia (although she can’t relate to people “who sleep 12 hours a day”) … her four children … her parenting (“bossy — but what parent isn’t?”) … what she might have been (a schoolteacher in Detroit) … the sexism inherent when a woman displays herself … how Guy Ritchiedidn’t approve of her image (who did he think he married?) … Kanye West(“He’s a beautiful mess. I love him”) … still trying to understand the “degrading” remarks made about her age … her mortality (“In some respects I will never die. Because art is immortal”) … Lady Gaga (There is no feud: “Here’s the thing. One day everyone’s going to have to shut up about it. You’ll see! I have a plan.”)

And finally, writer Hiatt asks her if she is still open to falling in love again?

“Definitely. Yes.”

“That was a fast answer.”

“I don’t doubt love for a second. Come on, listen to my songs!”

Well, for all the blatant behavior — for which she makes no apology — underneath, Madonna has always been the ultimate romantic. That’s why I think her mournful/wistful/slow burn ballads will be better remembered in years to come than her dance tracks.


Thursday, February 26, 2015

Madonna is superhuman. She has to be to survive the ugly abuse!!




No wonder Madonna took her Brit awards fall in her stride – she deals with much worse just for being a 56-year-old woman

Madonna was at the Brits, performing her totally boss I Will Survive-style single Living for Love, when it happened. “Took me to heaven, let me fall down … lifted me up and watched me stumble.”

So she prophesied it, and so it came to pass. It wasn’t a trip or a tumble. It wasn’t funny; it was terrifying and so brutal that the audience fell silent. It was the kind of accident that breaks necks, damages brains and haunts Cirque du Soleil performers’ nightmares. The Armani cape Madonna was wearing as she approached the podium was tied too tight and didn’t fall undone when her dancers pulled it. She was yanked back by the neck and flew through the air over three steps, landed hard at the base of the podium and for a split second didn’t move.

Watching at home, my heart stopped. Is that all it takes to kill a queen? Milanese outerwear?

The hateful hashtags #shefellover, #Fallenmadonna, immediately began toxifying Twitter: “I get it, Madonna. My grandma is exactly the same.” “I hope grandma’s ok. A broken hip at her age could be a death sentence.”

But as Madonna also sang last night, “I picked up my crown, put it back on my head. I can forgive, but I will never forget.” After a fall like that, anyone else would roll around screaming in agony then look for someone to blame.

She drew on a higher power: herself. Showing her famous mental and physical strength, she got to her feet, picked up the choreography and tune, un-lip-synced and note perfect – as the isolated vocals from her performance at the Grammys show – and finished triumphantly.

That is the Madonna I’ve loved for ever, starting with the flamenco moves of La Isla Bonita. They say you’re not supposed to believe the hype. But with some people, the mythos is real. She has mystique, the rare bulletproof real-deal charisma. She has never been defined by men and has always advocated for other women, pointing out in her upcoming Rolling Stone cover interview that “people like to pit women against each other”.

Analysis Madonna falls, but it was the Brit awards that took a tumble
If the ceremony proved anything, it was that the Brit awards themselves are substantially less interesting than watching someone fall over
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But it’s not just about individualistic survival ability, sisterliness or externals like Vogue style or Desperately Seeking Susan attitude. Madonna is not worthy of respect simply for surviving, having sass or cannily working out how to play every capitalist angle. She has a brilliant and indeed record-breaking talent in her discipline, which is music. She’s been making great albums including Like A Prayer, Ray of Light and Confessions on a Dancefloor throughout her career, and the latest, Rebel Heart, is up there with them; she is “in the game again”, as The Telegraph says.

But how many times does Madonna have to prove that she’s a worthy player? How many times does she have to break records by selling more, touring more lucratively, flexing harder than everyone else on the planet? Her many colleagues have paid tribute to her exceptional skills as a producer, songwriter, lyricist; but whenever Madonna successfully works with a male producer it is he who is given the credit.

Where her abilities are not ignored, imputed to men or praised in passing as though they have now faded, they are actively mocked. I loved her film WE, comparing it favourably with the risible King’s Speech, where the women were two doting wives with barely a line between them and Wallis Simpson was a depraved shrew. I saw WE with a historian friend who was astounded by its accuracy and detail; I loved the women characters, the aesthetic, the mournful realism behind the romance. It’s a feminist film, psychologically acute.

But she was brutally mocked in the reviews. And that laughter is growing louder and crueller and uglier, as the Twitter response to her fall illustrated. Madonna’s longevity was first admired and is now actively sabotaged by editorials which never fail to mention her age, as though it is something to be ashamed of. I am shocked by the uninflected scorn, the derision and foul-mouthed trashing she is dealt, and how much of it is grossly visceral: hatred of her flesh, physicality, sexual confidence, athleticism, ambition, her preference for Latin spunkbots, her alternating bossiness and vulnerability and romanticism and eroticism and playfulness, her performance ability and hunger. All the things which were once admired about her are now used to bash her and make her appear laughable or monstrous or desperate.

Madonna is no stranger to misogyny. She is a rape survivor and a domestic assault survivor. How much worse is this going to get?

Madonna is only 56. She is in the prime of her life, she has power, talent, experience and wisdom, in addition to her natural intelligence and rigour. She is about to release her 13th album – one of her best yet. The things she is ordered to do – age gracefully, put it away, retire, crawl away and die – have behind them a desire to shame, permanently destroy and negate this woman who dares to be vocal and visible, physical and political.

In order to withstand this, one would have to be superhuman. Luckily, Madonna is.

But why should anyone have to swallow the world’s unstinting hatred when she wants to be remembered for her brilliant artistry?