Sticky & Sweet Tour diary - North America

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Miami - 26 Nov. 2008

Performing Give It 2 Me with Pharrell Williams in MiamiPerforming 4 Minutes with Timbaland in Miami Just like in 2004 & 2006, the US leg of the Madonna tour comes to an end in Miami, Florida. On the eve of Thanksgiving, Madonna gave her all for a goodbye show to her American fans. Unfortunately Madonna's plans to have Kanye West guest star for this show didn't work out, since Kanye is touring Europe. Nonetheless, her superstar collaborators from her latest album,

Timbaland & Pharrell joined the show tonight! Timbaland appeared in a white shirt and pants during 4 Minutes while Pharrell, just like at the 3rd NYC show, came onstage for the last number, Give It 2 Me. The request song on this show, just like in Detroit, was the classic song Material Girl.

After touring the US & Canada throughout all October & November, unfortunately the second leg of the Sticky & Sweet Tour came to an end now. Madonna is proceeding onto the final, Latin American leg of the tour, starting in Mexico. Possibly this tour garnered the best response ever from fans and critics alike in the US, well-deserved! Such a great way to honour her 25th year in the music business!

Atlanta - 24 Nov. 2008

After ignoring it on her previous tour, Madonna comes back to the Southern state of Georgia. Her concert in Atlanta was honoured with a huge enthusiasm by fans. Surprisingly, being a "red" state, the crowd gave loud cheers to Obama during Get Stupid!

The request section was quite disappointing, but funny though, compared to the recent shows: she dismissed three differnt song requests (the first getting labeled as "that's not even a C-side!", which was the Evita track Rainbow High to which she said she couldn't sing it coz she hadn't written it herself) so she went with Express Yourself, but this time, she sang the first verse as well of that single.

Celebrities attending the show include Dallas Austin, who co-produced Madonna's 1994 album Bedtime Stories in Atlanta, and his protege, the R&B singer Joi, whose debut was also helmed by Austin and that record eventually inspired Madonna to enlist him as a collaborator in 1994.

Atlantic City - 22 Nov. 2008

Atlantic City, the other gambler's den that's famous for its bad crowd at a Madonna show. It wasn't any different for this tour either, where Madonna was furious with the gentlemen in the front rows sitting all bored and smoking their cigars. "Have you had enough? How could I tell? This is a very confusing audience. Some people are very laid back in this audience tonight. I'm not so happy about that!", she even asked a few people if they were bored.

Madonna tried to get the best out of herself when a fan requested her very first single Everybody. She admitted she didn't know the words for it, which became obvious at the end of the performance when both the crowd and Madonna forgot the words and she bursted out laughing: "Okay, guess what! We both suck, okay?! I suck and you suck! Yes, thank you, let's be honest to ourselves!", but then she said at least they can clap and even gave an applause for the new president.

Interestingly, at the third NYC show, Madonna refused to sing this song because it's "too slow." Finally singing it now, she gave a nod to all of the singles of the first album on this tour.

Philadelphia - 20 Nov. 2008

After traveling across the United States and Canada in the past several weeks, Madonna arrives back at the east coast for the last few shows of the US leg of the tour. Thursday evening she played in the historical city of Philadelphia, the only city that featured in every Madonna tour schedule so far.

The show went well, with some minor mistakes by Madonna during Spanish Lesson, that were addressed in the intro of Miles Away as "sometimes I get confused". She urged people to keep clapping because "some people just don't put enough effort".

In the request section, Madonna introduced her drummer, Brian Frasier-Moore to the Pennsylvania crowd because he's from Philly. She then asked a front row fan, Adam ("the first man"), to pick a song, and he picked Dress You Up, which is now the 3rd most performed song of the request part of the show, and it was considered as a real treat by the happy fans. Near the end of the singalong, she made a cheeky comment to a front row fan with a red tank that he should start working out in order to wear that.

Detroit - 18 Nov. 2008

Madonna's home! After a seven year itch, Madonna is back to her hometown, Detroit! Not seeing her since the Drowned World Tour, the Motor City crowd greeted Madonna with enthusiastic response. "I don't come here very often, so please make a big deal about it.", that's how she encouraged them to give her a warm welcome.

Madonna was very relaxed at the Michigan show, she even said "There's no place like home." during the intro of Miles Away.

In the request section, Madonna asked a front row fan, Kyle, to choose a song. She dismissed his first request but his second choice was normally accepted by Madonna. It was her 1985 hit single Material Girl! The crowd and Madonna together did a great singalong of the Madonna classic. She cheekily finished off the track with "How did I become known for that song?"

Houston - 16 Nov. 2008

Performing Candy Shop in Houston Madonna's back in Texas, for the first time since the Blond Ambition Tour! For some weird reason, Madonna couldn't recall that in Houston and told the crowd she had never been there (even though she opened the US leg of the 1990 tour in Houston).

During the request section, she urged people to keep clapping as an excercise, because in the front rows she saw people who needed some excercise. She then introduced her guitar player & teacher Monte Pittman to the audience, since he's from Texas.

For the request song, she let a front row fan, Tommy, to decide. The choice was Secret, the first single of the 1994 album Bedtime Stories. Madonna has not performed it since 2001, but surprisingly she knew the words very well and she did most of the song, not just a small snippet. She was satisfied with the participation of the Texas fans and even thanked them for reminding her of the track, because she forgot it.

Denver - 12 Nov. 2008

Surprisingly, Madonna went with Like A Virgin on the second Denver show as well. It's the first time that she does the same song in two shows in a row in the same city!

The request section featured a fan from Australia who was so excited when Madonna spoke to him that he was barely able to request a song, which was Who's That Girl, but Madonna turned it down.

Then another fan requested the 1998 song Candy Perfume Girl but Madonna dismissed it as well, saying "Huh? That's kinda dark don't you think? Are you kinda dark?" Finally, she went over to a girl in a wedding dress, called Amy and said, "I bet I know what to expect from you." That's how she ended up singing Like A Virgin. Afterwards, she asked the Amy if she was a virgin. She said no, then Madonna was like, "That's okay, baby. What is a virgin anyways.".

Denver - 11 Nov. 2008

This day saw Madonna's first ever concert in Denver, Colorado. She has avoided the Rocky Mountain state for 25 years! The show got a great response from fans and critics. While the crowd was very rewarding, the after-effects of the Vegas crowd probably have not worn off yet as Madonna asked Colorado if they were sleeping, since they woke up only before Hung Up, when the request song was Like A Virgin, which went down very well.

Interestingly, during the intro of La Isla Bonita Madonna quoted the "dance and sing, get up and do your thing" part of her first ever single Everybody.

Sunday, 09 November

The second Las Vegas show went more or less the same way as the first. The crowd was slightly better, but unfortunately not many knew the words of the request song, which was the 2006 single Sorry (used as a request for the second time on tour, first sang in Montreal).

Madonna dedicated Miles Away to Perez Hilton: "I'd like to dedicate this song to my good friend Perez, who thinks I play too much guitar in my show! Sorry baby, you're gonna have to live with it!" (Read his reaction here).

Las Vegas - 8 Nov. 2008

The crowd at Madonna's first Las Vegas show of the tour lived up to its notoriety and was indeed bad, but that just made Madonna to prove herself more. She mixed up some lyrics during Candy Shop but then greeted the audience with "Viva Las Vegas!" in the beginning of Beat Goes On.

She was a bit upset that the singalong of Into The Groove didn't go down very well.

She introduced the Latino-tingled number Spanish Lesson with "Let's get this party started!" and the crowd went wild during the breakdown of that song. She told the crowd to wake up from their fuzzy dream during the intro of Miles Away.

The request section saw the True Blue track Open Your Heart demanded by a front row fan, Abraham, who was noted by Madonna because he bought a lot of merchandise. Madonna messed up the lyrics here as well and said she lost her mind in Vegas.

She was upset about the people who were just smoking and placing their bets and gave them a big "fuck you"! She even joked "This is the part of the show where I take requests. No blowjobs!".

Los Angeles - 6 Nov. 2008

Madonna's Los Angeles show was the most special date of the tour so far. Lots of changes and fantastic surprises. The biggest of them being Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake making special appearances.

Madonna performing Human Nature with Britney in LABritney, looking good, wearing a white blouse and black pants, came on stage during Human Nature (the song was introduced with Madonna saying "Fuck you if you think I cheated on you!"), stood behind the microphone next to Madonna and they did the song together, changing the singular lyrics to plural.

Madonna performing 4 Minutes with Justin in LANaturally, Justin joined Madonna in 4 Minutes, dressed up just like in the video. They did the performance as seen on the Hard Candy promo tour in Roseland Ballroom more than 6 months ago.

Devil Wouldn't Recognize You was performed with Madonna being visible on top of the piano as the circular screen was broken, and the ending of Like A Prayer was different as well.

Before You Must Love Me, Madonna apologized for the technical problems of the stage and was sad because some of the lights were out so she couldn't see the fans' eyes. John McCain was replaced by the president of Iran in the "Get Stupid" montage.

During the request section, Madonna was shocked by such suggestions like Who's That Girl or Hollywood and went with Dress You Up instead. Before that, she applauded Obama and discussed the ban of gay marriage in California, telling her fans that if we can put an African-American president in office, then one day gays will have the right to get married.

In the closing song Give It 2 Me, she urged the "rich motherfuckers" at the front to jump. Celebrities attending the show included Jennifer Lopez, Ryan Seacrest, Kate Moss, Lindsay Lohan, Heidi Klum, Fergie, Lucy Liu & Drew Barrymore.

San Diego - 4 Nov. 2008

Madonna honouring Obama @ San DiegoAs the Democrat candidate Barack Obama became the 44th US president on the fourth of November, Madonna couldn't contain herself at the San Diego show: during the request section, she was having a blast and said "This is a historical evening, this is a motherfucking important evening and we are lucky to be sharing it with each other! This is a beginning of a whole new world! " which met huge enthusiasm from the crowd.

She didn't take any requests because she went with Express Yourself, fitting for the event. On the screens, Obama's picture was shown with the text "We won!". For the closing number Give It 2 Me, Madonna wore an Obama T-shirt. She forgot some lyrics of Ray Of Light because she "has a lot on her mind".

Oakland - 2 Nov. 2008

Madonna surprised the fans of California on the second Oakland show and debuted Burning Up in the request section. Her second single was a nice treat for the crowd, but she couldn't remember all the words.

Miles Away was dedicated to everyone who's afraid of love. For the next show, she's moving to South California and will perform in San Diego on election night.

Oakland - 1 Nov. 2008

Madonna's back in sunny California. Her first show in the state was in Oakland, the outskirts of San Francisco. According to fan reports, Madonna presented a near-flawless show with lots of energy and just small problems, like in the beginning of Ray Of Light.

During the request section, fans were ready with their signs again but Madonna refused to sing most of them, including Cherish & Justify My Love. The latter because "that's only talking and fucking", so in the end, she went with Like A Virgin yet again. After the song, Madonna claimed her support for same sex marriage.

Vancouver - 30 Oct. 2008

On the night before Halloween, Madonna had her first ever concert in Vancouver, Canada and her first show in the Pacific Northwest since the Who's That Girl Tour. Which is a huge reason why the audience in British Columbia was so good and that made Madonna deliver a fantastic show. A fan in the front row requested Like A Virgin and Madonna gladly obliged but asked the female fan back "Are you a virgin?". The singalong went amazingly well with Madonna notably enjoying herself.

Chicago - 27 Oct. 2008

On her second Chicago show, Madonna surprised again during the request part and treated an enthusiastic crowd to the 1985 single Dress You Up. She sang a lot of the song and even interacted a bit with one of the front row fans. Neither of the Chicago shows had a special introduction for Miles Away, Madonna just asked the fans to sing along with her.

Chicago - 26 Oct. 2008

The first show in Chicago, the City of Winds, saw a brand new request song: Beautiful Stranger from the Austin Powers soundtrack! Madonna was in a great mood, said the audience was amazing, she was the luckiest girl in the world and that she loves her current album Hard Candy (watch here). Being her 29th Sticky & Sweet show, Madonna is now halfway through her world tour.

Montreal - 23 Oct. 2008

On the second show in Montreal, Madonna surprised her fans and sang her recent hit Sorry during the request section. The audience got into it well and Madonna finished the singalong with the fitting "Je suis desolée!". Then she mentioned that her roots were French-Canadian.

Madonna dedicated Miles Away to Guy Oseary's birthday and called him "my brother".

Montreal - 22 Oct. 2008

Unlike the fans in Toronto, the Montreal crowd only had to wait 2 years to have a new Madonna show in their city. On the first of two concerts in Quebec, Madonna dedicated Miles Away to Rosemary, mother of Montrealian keyboardist Ric'key Pageot: "I hear this is your favourite song Rosemary! Sing along Rosemary!"

Naturally, Spanish Lesson was introduced with "Parlez-Vous Français? Habla Español?"

During the request section, Madonna went with Express Yourself because of a "cry baby" fan, who went so emotional at the sight of Madonna, which she rewarded with doing the usual singalong, but did note that "you can't sing and cry!" Madonna acknowledged some front row fans wearing "Sarah Palin sucks!" T-shirts.

Toronto - 19 Oct. 2008

The second show in Toronto, which started earlier than usual, at 8:30 pm, featured Dress You Up in the request section. Madonna refused to perform Causing A Commotion because "singing that song made her sound retarded".

Both verses of Dress You Up were sung and Madonna really had to work her ass off to make everyone sing along.

The Old School costume was the black/red one on this show and Miles Away was introduced with "I'm lonely, I need company".

Toronto - 18 Oct. 2008

Madonna is back in Canada. The first out of 5 shows in the country was set in Toronto on Saturday evening. Madonna always has a great time in front of a Canadian crowd.

Performing Human Nature in TorontoThe biggest evidence to this is that the request section featured two songs: the usual Express Yourself and her first ever hit Holiday. She was hesitant to sing the latter, so she let the fans to help her out with the first verse, who gladly obeyed (a couple of fans were holding sings of Bad Girl, but she didn't know the words). She had to encourage the crowd to clap and sing along, saying "I'm working my ass off!".

Madonna wore the pink outfit during the Old School segment, the first time since the second Paris show 4 weeks ago (it was the 4th time the pink costume was used). She introduced Miles Away as "This is sort of a love song for the emotionally retarded." During the politically charged video "Get Stupid", fans gave a boo to John McCain and gave an enthusiastic cheer for his Democratic opponent.

Boston - 16 Oct. 2008

The second show in Boston went without any surprises or problems. Madonna still kept her self-censoring and did not mention republican candidate Sarah Palin on this show either.

Performing Candy Shop in BostonDuring Spanish Lesson, she said she knows Bostonians do their homework, likely referencing the colleges of the area. The first show's Miles Away quote was picked up by the press but on the second concert she did not repeat that supposed Guy reference, she just asked the crowd to sing along.

She treated the fans from Massachusetts to the usual snippet of Express Yourself during the request section, even though she reportedly took note of a lot of songs, being demanded on signs by devoted fans (listing Deeper And Deeper, Dress You Up, Open Your Heart, Cherish and Papa Don't Preach, the next to last one being obviously rejected but calling the last one "not bad"). The 1989 single was in fact chosen by musical director Kevin Antunes' mother, whose whole family was at the show. Madonna introduced Kevin to the audience, saying he was from Boston. She finished off the performance saying "I think this song is about Barak Obama, what do you think?".

Boston - 15 Oct. 2008

As Madonna took the stage in Boston last night, nothing could've revealed that her divorce was announced only hours earlier. Madonna wisely avoided the subject throughout the concert. Instead she stuck to the political comments. Apparently she let the audience know that was asked to tone down the Sarah Palin comments, so there was no word on her this time. She urged the audience to vote for Obama: "I hope you fuckers are registered to vote. Take some responsibility for your fucking country, Just vote for Obama!"

Following the political theme, the request song was surprisingly the 2003 single American Life, because she noticed some fans holding sings of it in the front rows. She decided to sing a part of it but asked for help from fans because "that song was bad on the radio". Once again, Miles Away was dedicated to the emotionally retarded. "Maybe you know some people who fall into that category. I know I do.", said Madonna.

New York City - 12 Oct. 2008

The fourth and last show of New York City went perfectly, but without any surprises. There were no special guests, Madonna chatted with the audience less than usual, she did say "4 shows in NYC really kicks the shit out of you". The request song was I Love New York yet again because Madonna did not like the other suggestions.

Of course the last MSG show could not take place without Sarah Palin references: Madonna asked those who were sitting down if they were friends of Palin and repeated the snowmobile joke during Hung Up. Celebrities among the crowd were Natalie Portman, Kelly Ripa, Lindsay Lohan and Chelsea Clinton. That's all for the Big Apple, hope the NYC fans had a blast on this fantastic tour!

New York City - 11 Oct. 2008

Performing Beat Goes On with Pharrell in NYCFinally a show with a special guest! On the third show in New York City, Madonna pulled Hard Candy producer Pharrell Williams on stage! He was in the car during Beat Goes On and he performed Give It 2 Me together with Madonna. Pharrell was wearing a red vest with a blue shirt and jeans and of course his trademark baseball cap.

He seemed a bit confused on stage with Madonna, probably because they never rehearsed together. Hewore glasses like Madonna's and towards the end they made the audience do the singalong part together before Madonna shouted "Come on New York City, give it up for Pharrell!". At the very end of the show, next to the Game Over screen, they gave each other a big hug.

Other interesting bits: Madona almost fell during She's Not Me. She dedicated the Evita ballad You Must Love Me to her daughter Lourdes, who coincidentally had her 12th birthday anniversary: "I'd like to dedicate this song to my beautiful daughter, Lola. Today is her 12th birthday. The first time I performed this song, she was growing inside of me. This is for you, baby!"

For the request section (which she called as her favourite part of the show), Madonna was throwing condoms to the audience saying "Safe sex, Motherfuckers!" and noted that they had Sarah Palin on them. Many fans were prepared to demand songs (Madonna refused one of them, saying "it's too slow", supposedly it was a campaign for I'll Remember), but Madonna went with the obvious choice this time, Express Yourself. It was dedicated to Sarah Palin as Madonna said she wanted to express herself to Palin: "I'll talk about that later".

And she did in Hung Up: "This is the sound of Sarah Palin thinking!", shouted Madonna and plucked the guitar strings in the solo breakdown. Guests in the audience featured Chris Rock and Kelly Ripa, with the latter being asked to sing along during the last number by Madonna herself. Let's hope Sunday's show will have some nice surprises as well!.

New York City - 7 Oct. 2008

Performing She's Not Me in NYCThe second show in New York City's Madison Square Garden and the 20th show of the tour also featured Madonna in her top form. She's Not Me was introduced by "Ladies, have you ever had a best friend that wanted to do everything you did? Yes? Including fuck your boyfriend, suck your boyfriend? Yeah you know what I'm talking about!" then she messed up the first line of the song. Infamous Madonna impersonator Madiva was standing in his Old School drag just metres away from the real thing.

At the top of the excitement during Ray Of Light, Madonna did a big scream. In the request/speech part of the show, Madonna expressed her disgust once again as she saw fans sitting down and she made them stand up, once again saying she was working her ass off.

Then she sang I Love New York from Confessions On A Dance Floor which was really fitting and went down perfectly. This time around the singalong was longer because she obviously wanted to do the second verse. The audience did "And you can suck George Bush's dick!" which then she replied "Yeah, suck that fucking dick!". The "Get off of my street" part was immediately taken over by Madonna who said "You know who's gotta get off of my street? Sarah Palin!" and did a short diss against the governor in a singalong way. During the guitar breakdown of Hung Up, she repeated the snowmobile joke.

New York City - 6 Oct. 2008

Madonna is back in NYC! And what an incredible mood she has! On Monday evening, Madonna kicked off her first out of 4 shows in Madison Square Garden.

Performing Lucky Star with the NYC crowdAfter Ray Of Light she started complaining about an audience member from the first row: "This man over here looks a bit bored! You sir with the glasses and the camera. Are you bored? Are you having a good time? He looks bored! What the fuck! I'm working my fucking ass off right here! Okay?"

Then she went onto another subject that seems to be Madonna's anti-Republican campaign: "Thank you for coming to my party! You know who's not invited to my party? Sarah fucking Palin! Okay? She's not invited to this show! Sarah Palin has to go! She's not invited to any show! Get that bitch out of here! Okay? Nothing personal, okay? I love her soul, but she's gotta stop, it's freaking me out!", and the Big Apple crowd did not disagree!

After that, Madonna took a request from a fan who wanted Lucky Star and she did the first verse and chorus together with the enthusiastic crowd, Madonna was impressed and shouted "Oh my God, I love New York!" Before she launched Hung Up, she noticed people sitting down and burst out: "Why you people are sitting down for?! This isn't a Barbra Streisand show!"

East Rutherford - 4 Oct. 2008

Performing Hung Up in East RutherfordMadonna successfully kicked off the US leg of the tour. While she did not make any changes in the show, she gave the East Rutherford fans a real treat during the request section. She saw many of the audience holding a sign with a song title and she asked "Do you want me to sing Open Your Heart?" which then she gladly did, for the first time ever on this tour! She remembers the words of that #1 single but in the end she says "Shit that's too high for me!".

The rest of the show went perfectly, Madonna wore the black/red outfit for the Old School section and the crowd was quite good until around You Must Love Me. She got them back with the request section and Hung Up.

Madonna extended the message of Get Stupid on the first US show as she explicitly made fun of Republican vice president nominee Sarah Palin. At first she said "Who's doing the show? Who's doing the motherfucking show? That is not Sarah Palin, right? She is not in my show! She will never be in my show!".

She referred to the Alaskan ex-beauty queen yet again in the rock version of Hung Up: during the breakdown guitar solo, Madonna said "This is the sound of Sarah Palin's husband's snowmobile when it won't start." Madonna's friend Rosie O'Donnell was in the audience. Being the first arena show of the tour, it was the first time when the big M's next to the stage were absent. This will be the case throughout most of the North American leg.

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