Billboard ‘Woman of the Year’ Madonna Gives Provocative Interview on Everything From 2016 Election to Ageism

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In the early days of September 2001, I was driving down Santa Monica Boulevard on my way to a call-back for Guy Ritchie’s adaptation of Swept Away, starring his then-wife Madonna, when it dawned on me: Instead of turning left toward the office buildings, I would be veering into the residential area. I was going to Madonna’s house. Her music had been the soundtrack to my preteen angst, and she was my idol as a feminist and as an artist. Naturally, I pulled the car over, called my sister and had a mini-freak-out.

Madonna performs during her Blond Ambition tour in Worcester, Mass. on June 4, 1990.

Madonna Through the Years: Photos of the Pop Icon With Michael Jackson, Sean Penn & More

When Madonna walked into Guy’s home office that day, her little son, Rocco, was perched on her hip. She told me that my audition was funny and that I’d be good in the movie, and I just tried to keep ­breathing. I assume it was in that moment that Guy concluded I’d be the perfect, nubile idiot to cast in Swept Away. I won the part. The next few weeks were surreal for all of us. I had seen Madonna in concert as a teenager and had splurged on tickets for her Staples Center show scheduled for Sept. 11, 2001. Needless to say, that concert was postponed as the world came undone. But a couple of weeks after we met, I watched Madonna finish her Drowned World Tour. Before the music began that night, she started with a prayer for peace: “If you want to change the world, change yourself,” she told the crowd. Through tears, I sang along for the entire show.

“Art is how I express myself, and art is how I can change the world.”
Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott
“Art is how I express myself, and art is how I can change the world.”
 

Anyone who has ever had the ­opportunity to work alongside her — as I did in Malta during those next couple of months — understands why Madonna is Madonna. She works harder than anyone I’ve ever met; she exists in this world by her own rules; she has remained in control of her own voice, paving the way for the Taylor Swifts and Adeles of the world to do their thing in the process. During the course of her more than three-decades-long career, all of those instincts have helped her land the most top 10 singles on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, and hold the record for the most No. 1s by any act on a single Billboard list (46 No. 1s on Dance Club Songs). With more than $1.3 billion earned from her groundbreaking concert tours through the years, as reported to Billboard Boxscore, she now reigns, at age 58, as the highest-grossing female touring artist of all time. Her most recent trek, the Rebel Heart Tour, grossed $170 million during the course of 82 performances, concluding in March 2016. (A concert film chronicling the tour, Madonna: Rebel Heart Tour, premieres Dec. 9 on Showtime.)

Phillips designed the first-act costumes for the Rebel Heart Tour, an arresting mash-up of warrior dress and religious iconography. To construct the looks, she took inspiration from a vintage John Galliano jacket and a dress designed by Murmur.

Madonna’s Stylist Arianne Phillips Opens Up About Working With the Icon for Nearly 20 Years

 

“I worry about my kids, I worry about my health, I worry about the state of the world. There isn’t anything I don’t worry about.”
Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott
“I worry about my kids, I worry about my health, I worry about the state of the world. There isn’t anything I don’t worry about.”
 

On a recent Monday afternoon in between parent/teacher conferences for my kids and meetings for Pitch Perfect 3 — a film that focuses on young women finding harmony through music — Madonna and I reconnected over the phone. Since there is no shortage of Madonna books, articles, blog posts and career analyses, I just wanted a snapshot of Madonna right now, in this moment, because she is a woman who lives in the present and never looks back.

Where are you today?
I’m in New York, trying to get my Raising Malawi art auction together for Art Basel in Miami. Just dealing with artists and ­temperamental people.

How many artists will you feature?
It will probably be 12 amazing works of art. I wanted to keep it to artists that I collect myself or I’m friends with or art from my own collection. Originally it was just going to be art, but now it’s also experiences, so I’m trying to make them as ­interesting as possible. For instance, one is a trip with me to Malawi, where my son and ­daughter [David Banda and Mercy James] are adopted from. Another is playing poker with Jonah Hill and Ed Norton, and another is staying at Leonardo DiCaprio’s house in Palm Springs for a week. I didn’t think it was going to be as complicated as it is, but, oh well, that’s life. It’s complicated because I’m involved with everything: the lighting, the curtains, the flowers, the decor, the food. I’ve tasted too many bad bottles of wine. This auction is an extension of me, so I want everything to be beautiful, tasteful and well-appointed. It becomes ­exhausting because I need to be involved in every aspect of it: the people who are speaking, the clothes people are wearing, the music on the playlist.

Will there ever be a time that you let go of that control, or is this like, “I have to?”
I have to.

Where does that come from?
Obviously, you could say it has to do with my childhood, if you’re going to psychoanalyze me: My mother dying and me not being told, and a sense of loss and betrayal and surprise. Then feeling out of control for the majority of my childhood, and becoming an artist and saying that I will control everything. No one will speak for me, no one will make decisions for me. You could say I’m a super control freak. That’s what everybody likes to say. I don’t want to have an event that I’m not proud of. It’s like everything that I do. My shows, my films, my house, the way I raise my children. I take great offense when details are overlooked.

I want to ask you about ageism in the music world. In Hollywood, as you know, it’s rare for women to find great roles as they get older. I imagine it’s even tougher to be a woman of a certain age in pop music. When you go into the studio or mount a tour like Rebel Heart, are you concerned about staying relevant?
I don’t care. It’s the rest of society that cares. I don’t ever think about my age until someone says something about it. I feel that I have wisdom, experience, knowledge and a point of view that is important. Can a teenager relate to that? Probably not. But that’s OK. I understand that. “Relevance” is a catchphrase that people throw out because we live in a world full of discrimination. Age is only brought up with regard to women. It’s connected to sexism, chauvinism and misogyny. When Leonardo is 60 years old, no one is going to talk about his relevance. Am I relevant as a female in this society that hates women? Well, to people who are educated and are not chauvinists or ­misogynists, yes.

Speaking of: How did you feel about the outcome of the election?
It felt like someone died. It felt like a ­combination of the heartbreak and betrayal you feel when someone you love more than anything leaves you, and also a death. I feel that way every morning; I wake up and say, “Oh, wait, Donald Trump is still the president,” and it wasn’t a bad dream that I had. It feels like women betrayed us. The percentage of women who voted for Trump was insanely high.

Why do you think that is?
Women hate women. That’s what I think it is. Women’s nature is not to support other women. It’s really sad. Men protect each other, and women protect their men and children. Women turn inward and men are more external. A lot of it has do with jealousy and some sort of tribal inability to accept that one of their kind could lead a nation. Other people just didn’t bother to vote because they didn’t like either candidate, or they didn’t think Trump had a chance in the world. They took their hands off the wheel and then the car crashed.

Were you surprised?
Of course. I was devastated, surprised, in shock. I haven’t really had a good night’s sleep since he has been elected. We’re f—ed.

Do you know anyone who voted for Trump?
Yeah, and I’ve gotten into major arguments.

What did they say?
That they would rather have a successful businessman running the country than a woman who lies. Just absurd. But people don’t have faith in government as we know it. We live in a country that’s run by ­bankers. In a way, it makes sense that Donald Trump is the president. Because money rules. Not intelligence, not experience, not a moral compass, not the ability to make wise ­decisions, not the ability to think of the future of the human race.

What do you think artists’ responses will be?
I’ve witnessed many protests in Manhattan, but in the end the protests have to equal something. Something has to manifest.

Do you think you can be an agent for change?
Well, of course you know the answer to that. I’m trying to figure out my response to Trump. I like the idea that women are marching on Washington, D.C., the day after the inauguration. I want to rain on his parade. I was put on this earth to fight for the underdog and fight against discrimination.

As a fellow New Yorker, have you ever met the president-elect?
I wouldn’t call him a friend or ­anything, but I’ve certainly met him. I did a photo shoot years ago at [Trump’s] Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach [Fla.] for a Versace campaign. He’s a very friendly guy, ­charismatic in that ­boastful, macho, alpha-male way. I found his political incorrectness amusing. Of course, I didn’t know he was going to be running for ­president 20 years later. People like that exist in the world, I’m OK with it. They just can’t be heads of state. I just can’t put him and Barack Obama in the same ­sentence, same room, same job description.

When you go to Malawi, or travel the world, you must clearly get a sense of how our president affects the globe.
We’re the laughing stock of the universe right now. We can no longer criticize other governments, other leaders. I’m hanging my head in shame.

What have you learned through your work in Malawi?
It really opened my eyes to what’s going on in the rest of the world. It has ­connected me to organizations and NGOs ­[nongovernmental organizations] in other countries in Africa. It got me involved with the importance of secondary school for girls because girls are not encouraged to be educated in Africa. I’ve been working in Malawi for over a decade. I have a huge commitment and love for the country and I will never desert them. I adopted my two children that I’m so lucky to have living in my house right now. Since then I’ve been working tirelessly trying to make Malawi a more self-sufficient country. I’ve been ­building orphan-care centers, funding ­clinics and schools, and the list goes on. I’ve also been supporting this pediatric surgeon, Eric Borgstein. He’s an angel in human form who has given his life to ­looking after ­children. He’s tireless and fearless and ­performs multiple surgeries a day in the most dire conditions. I couldn’t take it anymore, so I built a hospital. I’ve been subsidizing education of other ­surgeons to work by his side so he doesn’t do everything on his own. That’s really what this Art Basel fundraiser is about: creating an endowment for the hospital with art. Art is how I express myself, and art is how I can change the world.

When I visit your social media ­accounts, you’re either posting about Malawi or about your family.
My family is everything. I will go to war for them. Whatever I’m fighting for, it’s for my daughters and my sons. I want them to have a good future. I’ve created an unconventional family and we have discussions at the dinner table about all sorts of things. My 11-year-old son can speak eloquently about Malcolm X and Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela and James Baldwin. My daughter Mercy plays the piano and can talk to you about Nina Simone. I’m really proud of that.

How do you decide when to include your children in your social media posts?
When I post their things, they give me permission. A lot of times they’ll send me pictures and say, “Please don’t post this,” and I won’t. They have private accounts, and I respect that. I also consider my ­children part of my work and the work that we do together.

What is going on with you as a ­filmmaker?
I want to make more films, and I’m going to make more films. I’ve written ­screenplays and I’m hoping to make them next, but who knows. Making films is very complicated. There are a lot of people involved. When I go on tour I just go, “OK, I’m going on tour.” But with films, I don’t have that kind of control. It’s much more frustrating for me.

Besides Trump, what does ­Madonna worry about? Do you even worry about anything?
What? I worry about absolutely ­everything. I worry about my kids all day long. I worry about my health. I worry about whether I’m going to get things done in time. I worry about every project I’m working on. I worry about whether I’ll get to sleep at night. I worry about the state of the world. There isn’t anything I don’t worry about.

Artists Weigh In on Madonna’s Inspirational Role in Their Lives

“When I think of greatness and what a legend is, I always think of Madonna. She has always been true to herself as an artist. She does things her way no matter what, and that always inspires me. Because she never backs down from her beliefs and takes risks, she has made history. Working with her was one of the proudest moments of my career. She’s the ultimate boss.”
Nicki Minaj

“Madonna paved the way for girls in pop to express themselves sexually, without apologizing. I really admire what she has created!”
Tove Lo

“Madonna has always been an inspiration to me. She’s a strong woman who knows what she wants and doesn’t compromise her vision. And she’s not afraid to reinvent herself — with every album she experiments more and pushes the envelope. That takes a lot of courage, which motivates us all.”
Britney Spears

“Madonna is such a singular artist. She created the modern pop star and has pushed boundaries for music for 30 years. She’s legendary, and yet she still brings this incredible young energy.”
Diplo 

 

This article originally appeared in the Dec. 10 issue of Billboard. Billboard’s Women In Music event takes place on Dec. 9 in New York City and airs on Lifetime Dec. 12. 

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Madonna’s Tears of a Clown – read and see all about it (new feature online)

With Madonna’s Art Basel ‘Raising For Malawi’ fundraiser behind us, we have completed our new ‘Tears of a Clown’ feature for you.

Madonna’s fundraiser at Art Basel in Miami was the second time she performed her ‘Tears of a Clown’ show, different songs than the first one in Melbourne and slightly different costume. Madonna raised a total of 7.5 million dollars for her ‘Raising Malawi’ charity at Art Basel in Miami where she auctioned off private pictures of her wedding to Sean Penn, Rebel Heart Tour outfit, a trip with her to Malawi and much more. 

To read more about ‘Tears of a clown‘, see the shows and view an online gallery (including the full Malawi catalogue) visit Tears of a Clown now (in the menu under ‘LIVE’).

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Madonna Clowns Around at Miami Fundraiser, Zings President-elect Trump

Madonna Clowns Around at Miami Fundraiser, Zings President-elect Trump

 
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Madonna performed an intimate, hour-long gig at Faena Forum in Miami Beach early Saturday following a big-bucks auction to raise money for her personal charity, Raising Malawi… but she wasn’t so charitable to President-elect Trump!

After telling the audience of less than 500 an anecdote about sleeping in Trump’s bed (she was working on a shoot for Versace for which his home had been rented), the outspoken superstar — dressed as a sexy clown — performed a slow-burn rendition of Britney Spears’ “Toxic” while images and unflattering quotes attributed to Trump were projected behind her.

Jokingly berating the audience for misbehaving, she also gave an impassioned speech about the situation at Standing Rock, asking why native people and lands are so often disrespected.

On the subject of her own career, Madonna shouted that the most controversial thing she has ever done is stick around as an entertainer for 34 years. She then declared she would stick around another 34 if she felt like it.

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Leggy Madonna thanked the evening’s supporters for saving children’s lives.

The show’s musical component included some rarely performed album tracks, along with big hits like “Beautiful Stranger,” “Don’t Tell Me,” and “Express Yourself.” One lucky (and deep-pocketed) fan even got to hold Madonna’s mic as she accompanied herself on a ukulele-powered version of “Holiday.”

Celebrities spotted at the so-called “evening of music, art, mischief and performance” — which cost a minimum of $5,000 for entry and offered six-figure packages that guaranteed a photo op with Madonna as well as access to an exclusive pre-party — included emcee James Corden, Leonardo DiCaprio, Ariana Grande (who danced with Madonna to her hit “Music” during the auction and modeled the Material Girl’s Rebel Heart world tour flapper dress, which sold for $150,000), Chris Rock, and Paris Hilton.

The auction included rare images from Madonna’s wedding to Sean Penn by the late Herb Ritts, art from Madonna’s personal collection and priceless experiences like a photo shoot art-directed by Madonna.

On the topic of the monies raised, Madonna said in a release, “Founding Raising Malawi is one of the most meaningful things I have done in my life. Raising Malawi’s evening of art, music and mischief at Art Basel will support our latest project to establish Malawi’s first pediatric surgery and intensive care unit. I’m excited to give others the opportunity to be part of this undertaking that will ultimately safe lives and help the children of Malawi.”

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Madonna raises $7.5M for Malawi, slams Trump in Miami show

Madonna performs during Art Basel Miami Beach, Saturday, Dec. 3, 2016, in Miami Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Kelli Kennedy)
 

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Madonna kissed Ariana Grande, repeatedly criticized President elect Donald Trump and said she was ashamed to be an American in a magnetic performance in Miami on Friday night where she raised more than $7.5 million for the African nation of Malawi.

The Material Girl dug deep into her personal treasures, auctioning off pieces from her own art collection, a costume from her tour modeled by Grande and black and white photos from her 1985 wedding to ex-husband Sean Penn shot by the late photographer Herb Ritts. The trio of wedding photos sold for $230,000.
Penn, who attended the fundraiser and bid on several pricey items when the auction stalled, handcuffed Madonna and crawled through her legs at one point as the two tried to coerce the audience to bid higher.
 

“For once, he’s not the one being arrested,” she joked.

The party lasted until early Saturday morning when Madonna took the stage for an hour-long performance before a star studded crowd that included Leonardo DiCaprio, Chris Rock, Dave Chappelle, James Corden, ex-boyfriend A-Rod and Courtney Love. The fundraiser was just one of the many parties during Art Basel Miami Beach, a contemporary art fair.
 
Madonna, who performed in a pink sequined clown top and fishnet stockings, seemed to hold nothing back, especially her opinions on the election, joking with the audience that she had promised to perform sexual favors for those who voted for Hillary.
She coyly said she’d been in Donald Trump’s bed, but later revealed it was for a magazine photo shoot and that Trump wasn’t even there — and she criticized his cheap sheets.
 

“They won’t be Egyptian cotton because we all know how he feels about Muslims don’t we,” she said as some audience members gasped.

She gyrated to a slowed-down version of Britney Spears’ “Toxic” and seductively sang, “You know that you’re toxic,” as images of Trump appeared on a large screen behind her.
 

At one point, she walked into the audience, climbing on tables and giving one man a lap dance. She abruptly stood up at another point, grabbed the chair on which she had performed and said she also wanted to auction it, noting $600 could send a girl in Malawi to secondary school and $2,000 would cover her university expenses. The chair sold for $10,000.

Other notable items included a Damien Hirst painting, a private performance by magician David Blaine, who was also at the event, and a weeklong stay at DiCaprio’s home in Palm Springs, which fetched $140,000. A print by artist Tracey Emin from Madonna’s personal art collection, sold for $550,000.
 

Madonna adopted her 11-year-old son David from an orphanage in Malawi more than a decade ago. At the time, she said, “I didn’t know where Malawi was” on the map. David had pneumonia and malaria. His mother died in childbirth and his siblings were also dead.

He was on hand to introduce his mother, telling audience members who paid at least $5,000 per plate, “I realize I’m one of the lucky ones.”
 

The pop star showed videos of Malawi, asking for help to build a pediatric surgery and intensive care unit at a hospital there. Fifty percent of the population there is under the age of 15, according to her foundation Raising Malawi.

The night was punctuated by her sardonic humor, corny clown jokes, controversial political statements and heartfelt moments about how much the hospital project means to her. She divulged a few personal details, lamenting that she was very single and hadn’t had sex in a long time and saying she’d always had a fascination with clowns which she said are “profoundly misunderstood.”
 

She spoke passionately about the plight of Native Americans and asked why their land was being destroyed.

“It just really makes me feel ashamed, ashamed to be an American, ashamed to be a human being really,” she said before launching into “American Life.”
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Madonna’s art collection and more on sale at starry benefit

As well as artworks and intimate photographs, auction items include a week in Leonardo DiCaprio’s Palm Springs villa and a poker game with Edward Norton and Jonah Hill

Madonna in Malawi in 2013, at one of the schools her foundation has helped build.
Madonna in Malawi in 2013, at one of the schools her foundation has helped build. Photograph: AP

Intimate photographs of Madonna’s wedding to her first husband Sean Penn are among the lots up for auction at the pop singer’s star-studded benefit show in Miami on Friday night.

The three photographs taken by Herb Ritts in Malibu in 1985 will be sold, along with prints from Madonna’s infamous 1992 book Sex and artwork by Tracey Emin from the superstar’s private collection, to raise funds for her Raising Malawiorganisation.

Comedian James Cordon will be master of ceremonies at the event, billed as “an evening of music, art and mischief”, in which Madonna will revive her bawdy cabaret show, Tears of a Clown, first performed in Australia earlier this year. The singer shared a photo of herself dressed in a pink clown suit on Instagram earlier this week to tease her performance at the Faena Forum in Miami Beach.

Other lots up for auction include a private game of poker with actors Edward Norton and Jonah Hill, a week in Leonardo DiCaprio’s Palm Springs home, a private dinner performance by the magician David Blaine, and artworks by Ai Weiwei, Richard Prince, Cindy Sherman, Julian Schnabel, Marilyn Minter and Damien Hirst.

But the chance to mingle with celebrity guests, including Sean Penn, comedian Chris Rock and singer Ariana Grande, comes at a high price, with tickets starting at $5,000 for seating at the event and rising to $150,000 for a “philanthropist package” that includes a premium table for 10, access for four people to a VIP cocktail reception and a photograph with Madonna.

Lapo Elkann, the 39-year-old grandson of Giovanni Agnelli, the late billionaire industrial magnate who was chief executive and controlling owner of Fiat, has donated a customised Fiat 500 described in the auction catalogue as “a car inspired by Madonna that invokes the Miami of over-the-top style, baroque prints, glitz and glamor”.

Elkann, has recently been charged with falsifying his own kidnapping as part of an alleged ploy for ransom money, according to police in New York City.

Madonna on her Rebel Heart tour – the costume is one of the items up for grabs at her charity benefit.
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Madonna on her Rebel Heart tour – the costume is one of the items up for grabs at her charity benefit. Photograph: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Live Nation

The event comes amid Art Basel Miami Beach, the biggest art fair in North America, which attracts super-rich art collectors and celebrities from across the world. Guests will also have the opportunity to bid on a trip to Malawi with Madonna, a portrait session with photography duo Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott, and the star’s Swarovski crystal encrusted flapper dress, as worn on her Rebel Heart tour.

The singer’s first Tears of a Clown concert, in Melbourne, saw her enter the stage riding a tiny tricycle and singing a cover of Stephen Sondheim’s Send in the Clowns. Over the two-hour show, she recalled visiting her mother’s grave, tearfully discussed losing custody of her 16-year-old son, Rocco, to her second ex-husband Guy Ritchie, and visiting her then-husband Penn in jail.

The auction of Madonna and Penn’s wedding private photos marks another sign of rapprochement between the pair whose four-year marriage was beset by rows and his clashes with the paparazzi. At their wedding ceremony in 1985, Penn scrawled “Fuck off” in the sand at the media helicopters flying overhead.

All proceeds from the evening will benefit Raising Malawi, the non-profit organisation founded by Madonna in 2006, which is building a new paediatric surgery and intensive care unit in the country, named after the singer’s adopted daughter, Mercy James, set to open next year.

“Founding Raising Malawi is one of the most meaningful things I have done in my life,” said Madonna. “Raising Malawi’s evening of art, music and mischief at Art Basel will support our latest project to establish Malawi’s first paediatric surgery and intensive care unit. I’m excited to give others the opportunity to be part of this undertaking that will ultimately save lives and help the children of Malawi.”

“This fundraiser is critical to supporting Raising Malawi’s goal of improving access to high quality pediatric healthcare in Malawi, one of the poorest countries in the world,” said Sarah Ezzy, executive director of Global Philanthropy Group, which manages Raising Malawi.

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Greatest of All Time: Madonna Is Billboard’s No. 1 Dance Club Songs Artist

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Janet Jackson, Madonna and Enrique Iglesias.
 

The icon is the queen of the chart’s first 40 years. Plus, Pet Shop Boys are the top duo/group & Enrique Iglesias is the top solo male.

Madonna is the No. 1 Billboard Dance Club Songs artist over the last 40 years, dating to the chart’s 1976 inception. The icon reigns thanks largely to her record total of 46 No. 1s, the most of any artist on any single Billboard chart, and her consistently dazzling performance on the tally since her 1982 debut.

In the Dance Club Songs chart’s history, in addition to her unmatched 46 No. 1s, Madonna owns the record for the most top 10s: 60. Janet Jackson follows with 33.

Fittingly, following Madonna on Billboard‘s Greatest of All Time Top Dance Club Songs Artists list is Ms. Jackson at No. 2. Rihanna ranks at No. 3, followed by Beyonce (No. 4) and Pet Shop Boys (No. 5), the top duo or group; Depeche Mode(No. 10), Erasure (No. 19) and New Order (No. 25) follow in the duo/group category. Enrique Iglesias, at No. 14 overall, is the top male soloist, followed by Prince (No. 24), Michael Jackson (No. 26) and David Guetta (No. 27).

Billboard’s Greatest of All Time Top Dance Club Artists:
1. Madonna
2. Janet Jackson
3. Rihanna
4. Beyonce
5. Pet Shop Boys

Click here for the full list of all 100 Greatest of All Time Top Dance Club Artists

The Greatest of All Time Top Dance Club Artists ranking is based on weekly performance on Billboard‘s Dance Club Songs chart, from its Aug. 28, 1976, inception through Aug. 27, 2016. Artists on the all-time chart are ranked based on the combined point totals of all their Dance Club Songs chart entries (with songs ranked based on an inverse point system and weeks at No. 1 earning the greatest value and weeks at lower spots earning the least; due to changes in chart methodology over the years, eras were weighted differently to account for chart turnover rates over various periods).

Madonna

Madonna Is Billboard’s 2016 Woman of the Year

Across four decades, Madonna has kept her sound fresh, current and uniquely her own, all while collaborating with a flurry of writers, producers and remixers. Whether delving into disco, house, R&B, hip-hop, dubstep or EDM, Madonna has burned up Dance Club Songs for 34 years and counting.

Madonna, who rose out of New York City nightclubs like Danceteria, debuted on Dance Club Songs (then known as the Dance/Disco Top 80) at No. 40 with “Everybody,” produced by Mark Kamins, on the chart dated Nov. 6, 1982. The song reached No. 3 on Jan. 8, 1983, the first of four top five hits from her self-titled debut album. On Sept. 24, 1983, Madonna hit No. 1 for the first time with the double-sided “Holiday”/”Lucky Star,” which ruled for five weeks. In 2000, “Music” (also the most recent of Madonna’s 12 Billboard Hot 100 No. 1s) tied “Holiday/Lucky Star” for Madonna’s longest No. 1 reign.

Madonna has scored two sets of seven consecutive No. 1 Dance Club Songs singles. The first began with “Causing a Commotion” on Oct. 31, 1987, continued through three leaders from Like a Prayer, among others, and culminated with the MTV-banned, Lenny Kravitz-co-produced and William Orbit-remixed “Justify My Love” on Jan. 19, 1991. The second streak started on March 13, 1999, with Madonna’s third topper from Ray of Light, “Nothing Really Matters,” and lasted through her fourth No. 1 from Music, the promo-only, Peter Rauhofer-remixed “Impressive Instant” (Nov. 17, 2001).

Madonna’s lone full-length remix album You Can Dance hit No. 1 on Dance Club Songs in 1988, as full-length albums (a la Michael Jackson‘s Thriller and many others) were allowed to chart as single entries at the time (until Feb. 23, 1991). Powered by the previously unreleased “Spotlight,” produced by Stephen Bray and remixed by John “Jellybean” Benitez, along with remixes of album tracks like “Over and Over,” a Nile Rodgers-produced Like a Virgin tune, and True Blue‘s “Where’s the Party” (in addition to “Holiday,” “Into the Groove” and more), Dance kept fans and DJs busy for months.

Madonna performs at Feijenoord Stadium on July 24 1990 in Rotterdam, Netherlands.

Madonna’s 40 Biggest Billboard Hits

In 1990, Madonna, with Shep Pettibone, surfaced an underground dance trend while name-dropping movie stars whose careers largely predated her fans with the No. 1 “Vogue.” In 1993, she transformed jazz-pop standard “Fever” (released in the U.S. as the B-side to ballad “Bad Girl”) into a topper with Murk Boys mixes. In 1997, Madonna re-worked Evita classic “Don’t Cry for Me Argentina,” remixed by Pablo Flores and Javier Garza, into a Club leader, while, in 2000, she took Don McLean’s classic rock story-song “American Pie,” with its Richard “Humpty” Vission and Victor Calderone remixes, to the summit.

Madonna’s record-extending 46th and most recent No. 1, the Diplo co-production “B**** I’m Madonna,” featuring Nicki Minaj, topped the chart on Aug. 15, 2015. The third leader from her most recent studio effort, Rebel Heart, was remixed by Sander Kleinenberg, Sick Individuals and Fedde Le Grand, among others. On Dec. 9, fans can revel in a full broadcast of Madonna’s Rebel Heart Tour on Showtime.

Next up, Madonna will be honored as Billboard’s 2016 Woman of the Year. The 11th annual Women in Music event is scheduled for Friday, Dec. 9, in New York and will air on Lifetime Monday, Dec. 12.

Billboard

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Watch Madonna Audition Dancers for Her Rebel Heart Tour: Exclusive Video (NEW FOOTAGE)

As Billboard gears up to honor the one and only Madonna as the 2016 Woman of the Year, Showtime is premiering her new concert film Madonna: Rebel Heart Tour on Friday, Dec. 9, which documents her blockbuster Rebel Heart Tour (which sold more than 1 million tickets and earned her $170 million — no big deal). Ahead of the concert film’s premiere, Billboard is excited to share exclusive behind-the-scenes footage of Madonna’s dancer audition process.

In the clip, which you can watch below, we get a backstage pass to witness quite possibly the hardest working backup dancers in the business as they sweat their asses off to earn a spot on Madonna’s Rebel Heart Tour, which boasted some of the Queen of Pop’s most astonishing choreography in years.

“I know I can be difficult and demanding and push you and sometimes my ego is out of control, but I am a Leo,” Madonna tells her dancers in the clip. Case in point: We get to see Madge bluntly reacting to one rehearsal with the simple summation, “That sucked.”

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Madonna Is Billboard’s 2016 Woman of the Year

“She wants the best and wants people who work hard. If you get too comfortable or too lazy, you don’t get the spot,” one dancer says. Another says it as directly as Madonna herself might: “She’s hard as fuck to work with.”

Madonna’s Rebel Heart Tour solidified her status as one of the biggest touring acts of all time. The pop iconoclast is the highest grossing solo touring artist in Billboard Boxscore history (the archives go back to 1990) with a staggering $1.31 billion in total concert grosses.

Relive Madonna’s triumphant Rebel Heart Tour run on Showtime Dec. 9 at 9 p.m. ET when Madonna: Rebel Heart Tour airs. That same day, Madonna will be honored as Woman of the Year at Billboard’s annual Women In Music event, which airs on Lifetime Dec. 12. 

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George DuBose releases limited Madonna…RAW boxset with book and prints – see pictures and order info

Photographer George DuBose has released a limited box set containing five exclusive Madonna prints and the Madonna…RAW – early concerts in NYC and Boston book.

The box set is currently available through this ebay auction

In spite of what eBay’s listing says, the box sets are located in Germany and George DuBose is paying the express shipping, so that orders placed soon can be delivered by Christmas.

There will be only five box set released through eBay this year. However, anyone contacting George through this e-mail address boss@george-dubose.com can buy a box set. These are limited to 50 worldwide.

Thanks to: George DuBose

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Best TV to Watch in December: Madonna Live, Holiday Specials and More

Madonna: Rebel Heart Tour (Showtime, Dec. 9th)
Our lady Madge spent seven months bringing the live show in support of her 2015 record Rebel Heart to a whopping 55 cities. This documentary chronicles bits from the entire tour, with special focus kept on her showstopping performance at the Olympic Park in Sydney, Australia. Expect writhing aplenty from the perennial provocateur as she cycles through her hits as well as new material, and maybe even a celebrity guest or two. (Madonna invited everyone from Idris Elba to Diplo to Katy Perry onstage during her tour; word is that Perry makes an appearance in the doc.)

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Win tickets to Madonna’s Art Basel event in Miami with Raising Malawi!

If you can make it to Miami on Dec 2nd and want to be Madonna’s guest at her exclusive Art Basel special evening in support of @RaisingMalawi, just reply with « I can be in Miami for #RaisingMalawi » as a comment to the official Instagram of Raising Malawi. Some will be rewarded with a ticket to be in the same room as #Madonna during the event!! #raisingmalawi #artbasel #tearsofaclown #fans

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American Life 2LP 180 gram vinyl front and back cover revealed (with corrected info)

Warner Music/Rhino will release American Life and Music on vinyl on December 6. The original pressing of the American Life LP had a misspelled Nothing Fails on the back cover (Nothing Falls), the error has been corrected on the re-issue.

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. American Life
  2. Hollywood
  3. I’m So Stupid

Disc: 2

  1. Love Profusion
  2. Nobody Knows Me
  3. Nothing Fails

Disc: 3

  1. Intervention
  2. X-Static Process
  3. Mother And Father

Disc: 4

  1. Die Another Day
  2. Easy Ride


Product Details

  • Vinyl (December 6, 2016)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Rhino/Warner Bros.
  • ASIN: B01M3Y3W7G

To pre-order through Amazon click here

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