Guess Who’s Behind This Disco-Fueled Track ( you think it’s M?) reply @billboard

We’ve been sworn to secrecy, but the music speaks for itself

Due in no small part to the success of a couple of Parisian robots, disco is fully back in vogue these days. With its buoyant analog chords, filtered funk synths, and vocoded hook, this blistering tune by a shape-shifting dance legend takes a few cues from the Daft Punk playlist and is a flawless fit for the times.

Billboard was given an exlcusive listen to this forthcoming track, but we’ve been sworn to secrecy on the exact artist’s identity. But, after a fair amount of begging, we were given exclusive permission to leak this 50-second snippet to the world. For now, the music will have to speak for itself.

Check out the tease above, and stay tuned for the big reveal coming soon. (And feel free to hit @billboard on twitter with any guesses about who the secret star might be.)

From an article by Billboard

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Madonna for L’Uomo magazine



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Because of the Internet, or because we’ve acquired some kind of maturity vis-à-vis the mass media, celebrities’ social role has changed in recent years. It’s not that they’re less interesting but now we demand greater transparency.

Consequently, many have rediscovered art’s ancient function as a public conscience and they use their media leverage for social purposes. An example? Madonna; who is not only still the greatest pop icon of our time, but also the one most committed to the fight for human rights, as demonstrated by her frequent public statements, her humanitarian work in Malawi and her recent project Secretprojectrevolution and Art For Freedom.

Secretprojectrevolution is a short film co-directed with Steven Klein. It calls for a “Love revolution […] a revolution of independent thought, of having your own opinion and not giving a damn about what people say”.

The movie has an autobiographical slant and reflects the many battles against stereotyping that Madonna has fought in her life. “How can you create art without becoming involved?”, says Miss Ciccone. “I like to compare myself to Frida Kahlo: everything she did was a self-portrait”.

The movie was intended as the advertising campaign for her lingerie range, but Secretprojectrevolution turned into a manifesto against oppression. It is founded on a sensuous, noir choreography featuring scenes of masochism shot in the labyrinth of rooms of a former prison in Buenos Aires.

Madonna alternately plays the roles of prisoner and torturer, accompanied by political messages about control and punishment. “Sometimes we are the victims of oppression, other times we imprison ourselves”, she says. “The movie is an example of the paradoxical world we live in”.

Art For Freedom is the next stage on from the movie. It is a digital platform in association with Vice Media that hosts videos, photos, illustrations and documentation of performances addressing intolerance and persecution. “There was a time when art reflected what was happening in society”, she proceeds, pensively. “Artists like Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, Richard Pryor or Jean-Luc Godard made political statements through their art”. The object of Art For Freedom is “to encourage people to believe that we can bring about change in the world through art” and a cry of protest against the commoditization of creativity.

Her greatest source of inspiration is the writer and activist James Baldwin, who has spoken at length of an artist’s responsibility in society. “By allowing ourselves to be consumed by corporate branding, worrying about having the approval of others and promoting only what is acceptable and popular, we destroy our art and everything about it that’s unique”, Madonna states.

At the start of her career, in New York, she belonged to the East Village artistic community and she was friends with Jean-Michel Basquiat and Keith Haring, who addressed social issues through art in a direct way, as do many artists in Art For Freedom. “Hanging out with Keith and Jean-Michel deeply influenced me”, she recalls. “Their approach to art was aimed at making it accessible to people, in the subway, on the street. It wasn’t elitist, you didn’t have to pay for it, go to a museum or gallery or frequent rich people, you could be anyone”.

Art For Freedom fights stereotypes, bigotry and discrimination, and promotes civil rights and the acceptance of diversity. “There are enemies, tyrants, fascists and dictators, people who destroy other people’s lives or take away their freedom: like Putin or the president of Venezuela”, the star continues, fervently. “In actual fact, the enemy is inside us. Whether we’re aware of it or not, we constantly discriminate against and judge others. So the first thing we have to change is ourselves. All the great leaders said that, like Gandhi, Martin Luther King, John Kennedy and Nelson Mandela”.

After Pussy Riot’s arrest, Madonna gave a speech defending gay rights at her show in St Petersburg in 2012. Eighty-seven people were arrested that evening and the star was fined one million dollars. Other times she’s been booed, censored and threatened with death, but nothing stops her. “I’m willing to sacrifice all in the name of human rights”, she declares, “apart from my children”.

Her next album will be connected with Art For Freedom. And we can expect to see her increasingly involved and committed. “I have no choice. At this point, there’s no turning back. This is my role in the world, my work as an artist. I have a voice and I have to use it”.

Far from the walls of museums, which a growing number of pop stars aspire to cross, Madonna’s statements and her resolve echo the words of Baldwin. They are meant for other artists in the hope of awakening them to their potential as agents, if they so wish, of social change and leaders of a more democratic, civilized society.

L’Uomo Vogue, May-June 2014 (n. 451)

Fashion Assistant Esther Matilla, Rika Watanabe.
Manicure Naomi Yasuda@Streeters.
Hair stylist Andy LeCompte@The Wall Group for Wella Professionals.
MakeUp Artist Gina Brooke for Intraceuticals.
Personal Stylist Arianne Phillips.

Fashion Editor Rushka Bergman

Photo by Tom Munro

PUBLISHED: 05/16/2014 – 06:30
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Madonna’s Hard Candy Fitness brand set for European expansion

The Hard Candy Fitness (HCF) chain started by Madonna and New Evolution Ventures chair Mark Mastrov looks likely to be expanded across Europe, after one of its biggest rights-holders began a fundraising programme to fuel further growth.

Jopp AG, which operates a number of HCF clubs in Germany and also holds exclusive rights to operate under the HCF brand in Austria and Switzerland has revealed intentions to open additional clubs financed through a bond issue.

Jopp AG opened its first HCF in Berlin in September 2013 and has since launched the HCF Women brand which it has applied to a number of its existing Women’s Gym Jopp & Jopp clubs.

The company has issued a bond with a maximum volume of €5m (US$6.9m, £4.1m), over a five year term with an annual interest rate of eight per cent. The bond offering was then lengthened until 30 April after around €1.5m (US$2.1m, £1.2m) had been raised and reports in German press suggest the deadline may be extended further.

HCF has steadily grown its presence worldwide, now operating in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Santiago de Chile, Mexico City, Sydney and Rome.

Health Club Management

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From Ric’key Pageot

#TBT This @madonna watermarked #cd was hand delivered to me a few days after I got the call to go on the road with her in ’08. This man literally waited on my doorsteps for 30 mins just so he can personally hand it to me when I got back home. I thought I got involved with the CIA. #TopSecret #UnreleasedMusic #CandyShop #HardCandy #PromoTour #StickyandSweet #4mins #FirstShow #Rehearsals #RoselandBallroom

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If Madonna’s ‘Like A Prayer’ Were A Wholesome 1940s Tune, It Would Sound Like This

Scott Bradlee and Postmodern Jukebox have taken yet another classic and turned it into something, well, classic.

This time they’ve nabbed Madonna’s “Like A Prayer” and recreated it to sound like a 1940s tune with the voice talents of Robyn Adele Anderson.

Watch the video above to see the recreation of the ’80s hit, and tell us which version you like better in the comments below.


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Madonna NYC 83 by Richard Corman Review

In 1983, Richard Corman, a photographer in New York, received a call from his mother, Cis. At the time, Mama Corman worked in casting (credits include Raging Bull and Once Upon A Time In America). She told Richard that “she’d just auditioned a woman,” someone he “really had to photograph.” Mom claimed, “She’s an original! I’ve never met anyone like her!”

This sounds like a classic mom-overhype, but it turned out that Cis had met a future star. Still a relative unknown who hadn’t put out an album, a young Madonna auditioned for the part of Virgin Mary in Scorsese’s movie. Given her stage name, it made perfect sense.

This story begins a new book of Corman photographs, Madonna NYC 83. Somehow, this lucky photographer got to hang out with Madonna before she released an album, made 12 number one pop hits, landed some 40 songs in the top 20 on the charts, won a slew of Grammys and sold more than 300 million albums worldwide. Roughly twice as prolific as Michael Jackson and protean as Prince with her reinvention, Madonna blossomed into one of the most powerful musical entities the world has ever seen. The way album sales work nowadays, she’s probably one of the most powerful the world will ever see.

Corman photographed Madonna in various NYC landscapes. She straddles a beat-up red armchair left out on the street. She squeezes comfortably between two well dressed, slightly confused older gentlemen on a bench outside a nursing home. At the time of these photos, the star-to-be favored torn denim, with kind of a James Dean white T-shirt/jean-jacket combo. She sports gaping holes in the knees of her pants, rolled up way past her ankles. She also likes belts. Who needs one, when you can wear three?

A different series of shots features Madonna in a knit outfit, full of bright blues and reds, posing with a boom box. While some of these poses seem mildly sexual, today’s viewers will hardly bat an eye. In one spot, she munches on the boom box antenna. Madonna dominated radio in her career, and these photos seem to predict future comfort with the format. She’s at ease and also in control.

When Corman captures the future star hanging out with a group of five local kids in the 10-to-12-year-old range, the denim comes back out. So does another, more portable boom box. The boys alternate between dancing and looking very serious in front of graffitied NYC rooftops. Madonna stands in the background, saving her moves for the stage. As soon as the kids disappear, she chews on the antenna of this boom box too.

When Madonna hits a club to perform, she trades colors and denim for a variation on the downtown NYC musician uniform—a.k.a., all black. (She basically wears the outfit from one of her earliest music videos.) For some additional personal flair, she relies on accessories: a large pair of cross earrings and enough bracelets for the whole band.

Not long after these photographs, the debut album Madonna came out. Future works may have sold more copies and won more awards, but they never eclipsed this debut—brash, cheerful, lusty and just eight tracks. Few pop albums achieve this much impact with such few songs. You can put Madonna at the same (high) level as Prince’s Dirty Mind, the Stooges’s Raw Power or Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes’ Wake Up Everybody. From the beginning, Madonna breathed rarified air.

In the 1980s, rock, pop, funk, disco, soul, early hip-hop and reggae routinely got mashed together with new, state-of-the-art technology. Wild, exciting albums like Madonna proved intensely innovative and vigorously danceable. Bass parts became particularly crucial to the album, clumping and stuttering in bubbly bundles. The producer Reggie Lucas, who spent some time in the early ‘70s touring with Miles Davis before working as a songwriter and producer, “established this mini-Moog bass sound,” according to an interview with The Atlantic last year, even though it was the first time he encountered some of the technology, like drum machines.

Madonna seemed to know her direction from the start. The album leads with “Lucky Star.” It’s a statement of purpose, a prediction of what’s to come: “You may be my lucky star, but I’m the luckiest by far.” She willingly let some of that luck rub off on Corman.

Next time your mom calls, pick up the phone.

From an article by Paste Magazine

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