In an interview with Mixmag, DJ The Blessed Madonna has revealed she recently mixed a Madonna song, which is a collaboration with another big star and which will be released soon.
What was it like seeing The Blessed Madonna alongside Madonna and Dua on the digital artwork?
Wonderful. I mean, I'm a Madonna superfan. I think that a lot of the driving force of that and part of the reason I related to her so much, especially as a kid, was because I was trying to work out a lot of the same stuff as a Catholic person. I really related to where she was coming from. She was certainly my gateway into dance music as much as anyone was, it felt amazing. I am forever grateful to her for letting me be a part of that. And that relationship has continued: I've actually just remixed something of hers. It’s a collaboration with someone else that's getting ready to come out. It’s a legendary duo…
Last year, The Blessed Madonna remixed Dua Lipa's Levitating with Madonna taking over most of the vocals.
UPDATE: apparently, the Mixmag article was misleading and The Blessed Madonna has denied that she was referring to a Madonna song :-(
Manager Guy Oseary wrote a beautiful and moving post on his Instagram, wishing Madonna a happy birthday, while telling more about the journey of their many years of collaboration.
But since he used parts of the Material Girl video (with his picture pasted on one of the dancers' head) Instagram automatically removed his post for copyright infringement. Oseary later made a new post, laughing off the incident saying "it even happens to me..".
Madonna is in Puglia in the South of Italy to celebrate her 63rd birthday. Among the guests are her 6 children, her boyfriend Malik and many of her friends, including her best friend Debi Mazar, Madame X dancers Daniele Sibili and Nicholas Huchard, Hollywood agent Maha Dakhil Jackson, creative director B. Åkerlund, photographer Steven Klein and many more.
Madonna has signed with Alexandra Baker of High Rise PR, whose clients include Billie Eilish and Finneas, Duran Duran, Clairo and Noah Cyrus, among others. She had previously been represented by Kelly Bush Novak at ID PR, who signed on in 2018, and BB Gun Press, which was founded by veteran music publicist Brian Bumbery, currently heading up publicity for Apple Music. Prior to that, Madonna had been represented for more than 20 years by Liz Rosenberg, who runs her own New York City-based shop with a roster that includes Cher and Michael Buble.
The news comes on the heels of today's announcement of a milestone, career-spanning global partnership between Warner Music Group and Madonna, including a new agreement for her entire recorded music catalog.
NEW YORK, NY – August 16, 2021: Madonna and Warner Music Group today announced a milestone, career-spanning global partnership that includes a new agreement for her entire recorded music catalog. With global sales of over 300 million records, Madonna is the best-selling female artist of all time, with countless accolades that include seven Grammy Awards, 24 ASCAP Pop Music Awards, and numerous international trophies, including BRIT, Bravo Otto, Danish Music, Edison, GAFFA, International Dance Music, Ivor Novello, Juno, MTV, and World Music Awards, among many others across the globe. She was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2008.
This partnership marks the revitalization of a decades-long relationship with Warner that began with the release of Madonna's debut single in 1982. The deal encompasses her entire Sire/Maverick/Warner catalog, including global smash albums such as Madonna, Like a Virgin, True Blue, Like a Prayer, and Ray of Light. It also includes her three most recent studio albums, MDNA, Rebel Heart, and Madame X, which will join the Warner catalog beginning in 2025. All in all, the new pact includes 17 studio albums plus singles, soundtrack recordings, live albums, and compilations.
Warner Chappell Music also globally administers all of Madonna's songwriting work. This features such top-charting hits as "Like A Prayer," "Vogue," "Into the Groove," "La Isla Bonita," "Live to Tell," "True Blue," "Open Your Heart," "Who's That Girl," "Express Yourself," "Lucky Star," "Take A Bow," and many more.
2022 will mark the 40th anniversary of Madonna's recording debut. This new deal heralds the launch next year of an extensive, multi-year series of catalog releases that will revisit the groundbreaking music that made her an international icon. For the first time, Madonna will personally curate expansive deluxe editions for many of her landmark albums, as well as introduce unique releases for special events, and much more. The series of releases will be overseen by Warner Music's catalog team, led by Kevin Gore, President of Global Catalog, Recorded Music, with the first release to be announced soon.
This monumental deal was executed by Madonna's longtime manager Guy Oseary at Maverick, Allen Grubman of Grubman Shire Meiselas & Sachs P.C., her business manager Richard Feldstein of NKSFB, and Max Lousada, CEO, Recorded Music, Warner Music Group.
"Since the very beginning, Warner Music Group has helped bring my music and vision to all my fans around the world with the utmost care and consideration. They have been amazing partners, and I am delighted to be embarking on this next chapter with them to celebrate my catalogue from the last 40 years."
Guy Oseary said:
"Over the past 30 years, I've been fortunate enough to meet and spend time with many of Madonna's incredible fans, and this new partnership will bring to fruition what so many of them have been patiently waiting for: a celebration of her groundbreaking catalogue. My partner Sara Zambreno and I are working closely with Warner Music Group to bring new life to these iconic works."
Max Lousada added:
"We're honored to be forming a dynamic new partnership with an incomparable superstar whose influence on our musical and artistic landscape is immense and immutable. Madonna has changed the course of pop and dance music, while taking live performance to new heights of drama and invention. At the same time, she uses her fame to amplify some of the most important social issues and movements of our time. Constantly and fearlessly challenging convention, her four decades of music are not only an extraordinary body of work, but a playbook for creative and cultural evolution."
On October 8, Madonna will be releasing her highly anticipated documentary film, MADAME X, exclusively on Paramount+, the streaming service from ViacomCBS, and MTV Entertainment Studios in the U.S., Latin America, Australia, the Nordics, and Canada. Fans outside of these markets can watch the documentary on MTV. Filmed in Lisbon, Portugal, the film captures the pop icon's rare and rapturous tour performance, hailed by sold-out theatrical audiences worldwide. The unprecedented intimate streaming experience will take viewers on a journey as compelling and audacious as Madonna's fearless persona, Madame X, a secret agent traveling around the world, changing identities, fighting for freedom, and bringing light to dark places.
In other news, Madonna has announced her birthday wish for friends and supporters to adopt a bed at the Mercy James Centre hospital in Malawi, built especially for children. There are 50 beds in the hospital's ward, where children recuperate after surgery or regain strength following intensive care. By adopting a bed, you can ensure that any sick or injured child that comes through the hospital doors has access to world-class specialized care. Madonna has challenged supporters to adopt all 50 beds in honor of her birthday. For more information on how to donate, go to: www.raisingmalawi.org/adopt-a-bed/
With her birthday coming up, Madonna has called upon her friends and fans to support the Mercy James hospital in Malawi by sponsoring a bed.
For more information on how to donate, go to: www.raisingmalawi.org/adopt-a-bed/
Actor Leon cuts a slim and regal frame. Once upon a time, his soulful eyes, defined facial structure and silken voice compelled Madonna to cast him as the saintly figure come-to-life and racial martyr in her culturally provocative Like A Prayer video during MTV's golden era.
It was a career-making turn that made headlines around the world. Leon went on to play memorable roles on screen, from embattled former basketball great in 1994's Above the Rim opposite the late Tupac Shakur to David Ruffin in 1998's biopic about Motown legends The Temptations, and his critically acclaimed portrayal of Little Richard in the 2000 biopic about the eccentric late singer's life.
Allison Kugel: You've had so many iconic roles and appearances over the years, and you've played a part in some amazing pop culture history. The first thing I want to ask you about is waaay back in 1989 when you were Madonna's male lead in the controversial music video for her song, Like A Prayer. How were you cast in the Like a Prayer video, first of all?
Leon: My agent called me and said they were interested in seeing me for this music video with Madonna and I told them I wasn't interested.
Well, why would I be at that time? I was in acting at the time, and I had just started doing studio movies.
But you didn't think at the time that MTV was this amazing platform, and Madonna was the top artist?
No, I wasn't thinking that way because I was a serious actor, and you didn't see serious actors in music videos back then, dancing around. I thought, "If I'm in this music video with Madonna, I'll be dancing around doing something like that. I didn't really know, and at the time I'm trying to pick and choose and I'm trying to do something with my career. I didn't think dancing around in a music video with Madonna was going to elevate it (laugh). That was my thinking.
Then, maybe a week or two later they came back again and said to my agent, "Listen, Mary Lambert (the video's director) would like to meet Leon." Then my agent said that Mary Lambert was a feature film director. And she said, "You know, maybe something can come out of this meeting even if you don't do the music video."
I went to meet her and there was nothing but women around everywhere. We hit it off, it was great, and then they wanted me to meet Madonna, and Madonna and I hit it off. Madonna walked in and said, "I don't even know what to say, because everyone in the world is telling me that you're the guy (laugh)."
So, you're on the set of the Like a Prayer video with Madonna, and you had to know this was going to be a controversial video, or that it would at least spark a major conversation about race and about religion. What were you thinking when you were making the video?
First of, I have to tell you, one of the things that made me want to do the video when I was talking with Mary Lambert, and I said to her, "Well let me hear the song." I heard the song, and I was thinking, "Wow, this song sounds like it's going to be number one." I then said, "Let me get this right. You want me to act?" She said, "Yes. I need you to play two different characters and I need an actor for this." That's when it clicked, and I got it. I said, "I'm going to be acting in the video, and Madonna will have me come to life and Madonna will adore me? Yeah, okay I got it. I can see me doing this (laughs).
I get it now. Okay. So, they basically twisted your arm (laughs)…
Things had to come together for me to see the vision, you know? When I'm on the set and I realize the level of production and how good this is going to be, all the metaphors in the video, I knew at that time that this was Madonna's comeback, and this is a number one song. I know it would be the lead off story of every entertainment section. What I didn't know is it would be the lead off story of everything; not just the entertainment sections, but the front of the newspapers and the first story on the news.
It's the late 80s and it sounds comical to say this now, but I remember news people discussing your interracial kiss with Madonna. That sounds so crazy now, right? But we're going back over thirty years ago, and it was a big deal back then.
Not to say it wasn't a big deal, but I don't think that the interracial kiss was that big of a deal.
The burning crosses in the video?
It was who she was kissing, and that he was Black.
Tell me the difference…
For one thing, most people believe that she is kissing Jesus and Jesus is being portrayed as a Black man.
That was where there was and is a much bigger controversy. She's not just kissing a Black man. She's kissing a Black Jesus. Even though he was just a Saint that came to life, people thought of him as Jesus, so that's where the controversy really happened. There were so many metaphors, but probably none bigger than that.
When you and Madonna were working together, shooting this video, did she say anything to you about how she thought it was going to be received, or was she just all into the artistry of it and that was it?
Madonna was a lot of fun to be around, and we joked around a lot and did a few things together. She was cool. I think she was very much trusting of her team and the ultimate plan of what this video was supposed to be, and its visuals. I thought she looked great in the video, like an Italian movie star. I think that she was very locked into making her comeback at the time. The song was going to be that lead off thing that was going to kick it off, and it was everything she could have imagined and more.
And everything old is new again, because you have the scenes in the video where you're being wrongfully accused of attacking someone when you are leaning over, trying to help her, after the perpetrator, who happens to be white, runs away.
Of course, and the thing is, the video is such a positive video if you are a religious person. What happens is, a woman (played by Madonna) sees a crime. She sees the wrong man accused, she went to church for guidance and the guidance she got from church and that experience from church, got her to do the right thing.
Another anniversary to celebrate: on August 1, 1989 Cherish is released as third single of the Like A Prayer album. To celebrate this anniversary, the music video has been upgraded in high definition. Check it out on YouTube.
On Friday, the True Blue album celebrated its 35 anniversary. To celebrate, Madonna's team launched a special 35th Anniversary Edition, available on digital streaming platforms. It includes the original songs, as well as remixes, dubs and instrumentals.
The 35th Anniversary edition 'True Blue' tracklisting is:
1. Papa Don't Preach
2. Open Your Heart
3. White Heat
4. Live To Tell
5. Where's The Party
6. True Blue
7. La Isla Bonita
8. Jimmy Jimmy
9. Love Makes The World Go Round
10. Papa Don't Preach (Extended Remix)
11. True Blue (The Color Mix)
12. Open Your Heart (Extended Version)
13. La Isla Bonita (Extended Remix)
14. True Blue (Remix/Edit)
15. Open Your Heart (Dub)
16. Live To Tell (Instrumental)
17. True Blue (Instrumental)
18. La Isla Bonita (Instrumental Extended Remix)
Madonna has joined a growing chorus of celebrities speaking out against DaBaby's homophobic comments made onstage Sunday at Rolling Loud Miami.
On Thursday (July 29), the pop star posted a video of DaBaby's remarks -- where he asked fans to put their cellphone lighters up "if you didn't show up today with HIV, AIDS, or any of them deadly sexually transmitted diseases that'll make you die in two to three weeks," "ladies, if your p---y smell like water" and "fellas, if you ain't sucking d--- in the parking lot" -- and sent a direct "message" to the rapper.
"If you're going to make hateful remarks to the LGBTQ+ community about HIV/AIDS then know your facts: After decades of hard won scientific research— there are life saving medicines available to children born with HIV, to people who contract HIV through blood transfusions, dirty needles or exchange of bodily fluids," Madonna wrote in her Instagram caption. "These new ARV's [antiretrovirals] can keep a person with AIDS alive for the rest of their lives!!! AIDs is not transmitted by standing next to someone in a crowd.
"I want to put my cellphone lighter up and pray for your ignorance," she added. "No one dies of AIDS in 2 or 3 weeks anymore. Thank God."
Madonna went on to address his comments about women as well and to ask him to treat all people "with dignity and respect."
"Your sexist remarks about Ladies [whose] p---ies need to smell like water only encourage more discrimination against women who fight daily against the oppression of living under the constraints of the Male Gaze," she wrote. "People like you are the reason we are still living in a world divided by fear. All Human beings should be treated with dignity and respect regardless of race, gender, sexual preference or religious beliefs. AMEN."
Elton John, Questlove and DaBaby's "Levitating" remix collaborator Dua Lipa have also spoken out against the rapper's comments, with Lipa writing Tuesday on her Instagram Story: "I'm surprised and horrified at DaBaby's comments. I really don't recognize this as the person I worked with."
GLAAD also condemned the remarks, saying Wednesday in a statement: "The rhetoric that DaBaby used is inaccurate, hurtful, and harmful to the LGBTQ community and the estimated 1.2 million Americans living with HIV."
DaBaby partially apologized Tuesday on Twitter, writing, "Anybody who done ever been effected by AIDS/HIV y'all got the right to be upset, what I said was insensitive even though I have no intentions on offending anybody. So my apologies." But he also said his critics misinterpreted the rest of his message. "I told you y'all digested that wrong."
Madonna's reaction was praised by many, among who Dionne Warwick, who wrote:
Madonna, boyfriend Malik and her kids had some fun last week, organising a family BBQ while away in a caravan. The pictures delivered some trashy gold!
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