On July 27, 1983, the world would be introduced to a budding superstar from the streets of New York City (she was from Bay City, Michigan) named Madonna (if someone still don´t know, she got the name after her mother, a French Canadian descent, Madonna Louise, née Fortin).

Madonna attended Rochester Adams High School where she became a straight-A student and a member of the cheerleading squad. After graduating, she received a dance scholarship to the University of Michigan. She convinced her father to allow her to take ballet lessons and was persuaded by Christopher Flynn, her ballet teacher, to pursue a career in dance. 

In 1978, she dropped out of college and relocated to New York City. She had little money and worked as a waitress at Dunkin' Donuts and with modern dance troupes. Madonna said of her move to New York, "It was the first time I'd ever taken a plane, the first time I'd ever gotten a taxi cab. I came here with $35 in my pocket. It was the bravest thing I'd ever done." She started to work as a backup dancer for other established artists. During a late night, Madonna was returning from a rehearsal, when she was dragged up an alleyway by a pair of men at knifepoint and forced to perform fellatio. Madonna characterized the attack as rape; she later commented that "the episode was a taste of my weakness, it showed me that I still could not save myself in spite of all the strong-girl show. I could never forget it." 

While performing as a dancer for the French disco artist Patrick Hernandez on his 1979 world tour, Madonna became romantically involved with musician Dan Gilroy. Together, they formed her first rock band, the Breakfast Club, for which Madonna sang and played drums and guitar. In 1980 or 1981 she left Breakfast Club and, with her former boyfriend Stephen Bray as drummer, formed the band Emmy. Their music impressed DJ and record producer Mark Kamins who arranged a meeting between Madonna and Sire Records founder Seymour Stein.


After Madonna signed a singles deal with Sire, her debut single, "Everybody", was released on April 24, 1982, and became a dance hit. After the successful release of her first two singles Everybody and Burning Up, Warner Records  gave Madonna the permission to produce her first album. 

/ Video below: Madonna's first ever live performance of "Everybody" at the Danceteria club in New York - December 16, 1982 /

Though New York DJ Mark Kamins had discovered Madonna and produced Everybody, Madonna decided to work with Warner producer Reggie Lucas for the rest of the album. They started recording Lucky Star, a song written by Madonna, and Borderline, which was a composition of Lucas. Soon both realised they couldn't cooperate that well. Lucas produced the album his way, while Madonna complained that she had different concepts and ideas. She took the finished but unsatisfactory album to her friend John -Jellybean- Benitez, who remixed and rearranged the whole album. He also added a song written by Curtis Hudson and Lisa Stevens: Holiday. This song (which was her third single) would establish Madonna as the new dance act of the early 80s. Of course later it would grow into one of Madonna's best classics. 

Though the album at first got the name 'Lucky Star', it was released on July 27th, 1983 simply as 'Madonna'. The overall sound of Madonna is dissonant, and is in the form of upbeat synthetic disco, utilizing some of the new technology of the time, like the Linn drum machine, Moog bass and the OB-X synthesizer. The album peaked at number eight on the Billboard 200, sold 10 milion copies worldwide and and spawn five singles: "Everybody", "Burning up", "Holiday", "Lucky Star" and "Borderline". Madonna dedicated the album to her father. 

In September 1985, the album was re-issued under the name "The First Album", using different art work (photo below). 

Listen to the full album.

Track list:

Lucky Star – 5:37 (Madonna)
Borderline – 5:18 (Reggie Lucas)
Burning Up – 3:44 (Madonna)
I Know It – 3:45 (Madonna)
Holiday – 6:08 (Curtis L. Hudson, Lisa Stevens)
Think of Me – 4:53 (Madonna)
Physical Attraction – 6:36 (Reggie Lucas)
Everybody – 6:00 (Madonna)

Madonna's look and manner of dressing, her performances, and her music videos influenced young girls and women and her style became one of the female fashion trends of the 1980s. It was created by stylist and jewelry designer Maripol and the look consisted of lace tops, skirts over capri pants, fishnet stockings, jewelry bearing the crucifix, bracelets, and bleached hair.

Below read the interesting story behind the making of each single from the album and their belonging video. The singles follows in the sequence of their release.


In 1982, the 24 year old Madonna was living in New York and trying to set up her music career. She was joined by her boyfriend from Detroit, Steve Bray, who became the drummer of her band, The Breakfast Club, which generally played hard-rock music. After that, however, they abandoned playing songs in the hard-rock genre and got signed by a music management company called Gotham Records with the plan of pursuing a new musical direction. They decided to pursue the funkgenre but the record company was not happy with their musical abilities, hence they were dropped, and Madonna and Bray left the band.Meanwhile, Madonna had written and developed some songs on her own. She carried rough tapes of three of the songs, namely "Everybody", "Ain't No Big Deal" and "Burning Up". At that time, she frequented the Danceteria nightclub in New York. It was there that Madonna convinced the DJ Mark Kamins to play "Everybody" for the crowd, and the song received a positive reaction. Kamins offered to get Madonna a record deal with the understanding that he would produce the single. He took her to his boss, Chris Blackwell, who owned Island Records, but he declined to sign Madonna. This rejection led Madonna to Sire Records in 1982. Michael Rosenblatt, who worked at the artists and repertoire department of Sire, commented that: "Madonna is great. She will do anything to be a star, and that's exactly what I look for in an artist: total co-operation... With Madonna, I knew I had someone hot and co-operative, so I planned to build her career with singles, rather than just put an album right away and run the risk of disaster."
Rosenblatt offered Madonna $5,000 in advance plus $1,000 in royalties for each song she wrote. Madonna was ultimately signed for two 12 inch singles by the President of Sire, Seymour Stein, who was impressed by her singing, after listening to "Everybody" at a hospital in Lenox Hill where he was admitted. The 12 inch version of "Everybody" was produced by Mark Kamins at Bob Blank's Blank Tapes Studio in NYC. Kamins was romantically involved with Madonna at that time. He took over the production work from Steve Bray. The new recording ran 5:56 on one side and 9:23 for the dub version on the flipside. Madonna and Kamins had to record the single at their own cost. Arthur Baker, friend of Mark Kamins, guided him through the role of a music producer and provided him with studio musician Fred Zarr who performed his keyboard wizardry on the track. Zarr became one of the common musical threads on the album by eventually performing on every track. Due to the restrained budget, the recording was a hefty affair as Madonna could not understand Kamins' directions and Kamins himself faced problems directing. Hence the A-side "Ain't No Big Deal" did not become as successful as everyone expected. Rosenblatt wanted to release "Everybody" with "Ain't No Big Deal" on the other side, but later changed his mind and put "Everybody" on both sides of the vinyl record after hearing the recorded version of "Ain't No Big Deal". The single was commercially released in October 1982.

The 12-inch single of "Everybody" failed to break into the Billboard Hot 100 in the United States. It peaked at seven on Billboard's Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles chart on December 25, 1982. However the song moved quickly up the dance charts, and was Madonna's first single to chart on the Billboard Hot Dance/Club Play Chart, peaking at number three. One of the first radio stations to embrace the song was WKTU, which reported it as a new "Playlist Top Add On" in the December 11, 1982, issue of Billboard, reflecting their station's playlist for the week ending November 30, 1982. Since its release, the single has sold around 250,000 copies. The song helped Madonna achieve a first magazine cover photograph. In the December issue of Dance Music Report magazine, Madonna and another band Jekyll and Hyde were nominated for awards in the sales category of a reader's poll. It was Madonna's picture that appeared on the cover

/ Video below: "Everybody" official video directed by Ed Steinberg The video helped to clear the misconception regarding her public image, that she was an African American artist. /

Sire Records had marketed the "Everybody" single as if Madonna was a black artist. This misconception was cleared by the release of the music video for the song. Regarding the importance of shooting a music video for the song, Madonna commented that, "If I didn't have a video, I don't think all the kids in the Midwest would know about me. It takes the place of touring. Everybody sees them everywhere. That really has a lot to do with the success of my album." She invited Sire Records executives, including Stein and Rosenblatt, to the New York nightclub Danceteria. She performed "Everybody" on the dancefloor, wearing a top hat and tails. On the night of the performance, Madonna's friend Haoui Montaug introduced her to the 300 strong audience. Cheered by them, Madonna and her dancers performed their choreographed dance moves, later described as a 'disco act backed by avant-garde dancers. Seeing the performance, they also realised that Madonna appeared visually stunning. They ordered an in-house video of "Everybody" to be sent to the clubs around the country which used dance videos.

Rosenblatt contacted Ed Steinberg, who ran the Rock America video company and asked him if he could spare a few hours to make a music video for "Everybody" with Madonna on stage at her next performance in Danceteria. The idea was to play the video as promotion across the United States so that people will come to recognize an image of Madonna and her performance. Rosenblatt offered Steinberg $1,000 for the in-house production video, when artists like Duran Duran and Michael Jackson were spending six figure sums on videos. They finally agreed on $1,500. With the low-budget, the video was directed by Steinberg. Steinberg suggested shooting the video on location at the Paradise Garage, a downtown gay disco, instead of filming a live performance. Madonna's friend Debi Mazar did the makeup and joined her other backup dancers, namely Erika Belle and Bags Rilez. Mazar brought a few of her friends to act as a disco crowd in the video, including African-American graffiti artist Michael Stewart. Steinberg was impressed by Madonna's professionalism on the set and he helped to send copies of the tape to nightclubs across America which used dance music videos for their entertainment. This promotion helped the song to grow from being a dance hit in New York to a nationwide hit.

The video starts with Madonna and her two backup dancers dancing in a club while lights blink in the background. The shots continue while interspersing close-up shots of Madonna dancing while wearing a coat and junk jewelry. Author Douglas Kellner in his book Media Culture: Cultural Studies, Identity, and Politics Between the Modern and the Postmodern noted that already with her first video, Madonna was deploying fashion, sexuality and the construction of an individual image to present herself both as an alluring sex object and as a transgressor of established norms. The band Fab Five Freddy reminisce that with the video Madonna "is attracting those who were more street, more savvy, more flavorful.".


In 1982, Madonna was living in New York and trying to launch her musical career. Her Detroit boyfriend, Steve Bray, became the drummer for her band. Abandoning hard rock, they were signed by a music management company, Gotham records, and decided to pursue music in the funk genre. They soon dropped those plans. Madonna carried rough tapes of three songs with her: "Everybody", "Ain't No Big Deal" and "Burning Up". Madonna presented "Everybody" to the DJ Mark Kamins who, after hearing the song, took her to Sire Records, where she was signed for a single deal. When "Everybody" became a dance hit, Sire Records decided to follow up with an album for her. However, Madonna chose not to work with either Bray or Kamins, opting instead for Warner Brothers producer Reggie Lucas. Michael Rosenblatt, the A&R director of Sire Records, explained to Kamins that they wanted a producer who had more experience in directing singers; hence they appointed Lucas. He pushed Madonna in a more pop direction and produced "Burning Up" and "Physical Attraction" for her.
While producing the tracks, Lucas radically changed their structure from the original demo versions. Madonna did not accept the changes, so John "Jellybean" Benitez, a DJ at the Funhouse Disco, was called in to remix the tracks. He added some extra guitar riffs and vocals to "Burning Up". Sire Records backed up the single by sending Madonna on a series of personal appearances in clubs around New York, where she performed the single. They also hired a stylist and jewelry designer called Maripol, who helped Madonna with the single cover. The cover for the 12-inch dance single for "Burning Up" was designed by Martin Burgoyne.

"Burning Up" was released on March 9, 1983. But like its predecessor "Everybody", "Burning Up" not only failed to break into the Billboard Hot 100 chart, but this time "Burning Up" even failed to chart in the Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles chart. It did however manage to peak at number three on the Billboard Hot Dance Club Play, staying on the chart for 16 weeks. The song was a top 20 hit in Australia in June 1984, peaking at number 13, after having originally charted in the lower reaches of the top 100 in November 1983. The song was also used as background music for a scene in the 1984 film The Wild Life.

/ Video below: "Burning up" official video directed by Steve Baron. 
Madonna in a white dress lying on the road while writhing in passion for her lover /

Sire Records commissioned a music video for the song to be directed by Steve Barron. Madonna's friend Debi Mazar was hired as the make-up artist for the video while Maripol was the stylist with Madonna's then boyfriend Ken Compton appearing as her onscreen lover. By the time the video was released, MTV had begun to show dance music videos. Hence the music video of "Burning Up" became a minor hit on the channel. The narrative of the video shows Madonna in a white dress, as she sings the song proclaiming her helpless passion for her lover. She wore her famous rubber bracelets which were actually typewriter belts. Her love for the boy portrayed her as a helpless victim like the stereotyped female portrayed in many silent movies. At one point in the video Madonna is shown being hit by a car driven by a young man, played by Compton. By the end of the song Madonna is shown driving the car, with a knowing, defiant smile on her lips and has ditched the man, thereby giving the message that she was in charge, a theme recurrent throughout her career.
Though the lyrics of the song like "Do you want to see me down on my knees?" portray female helplessness, the video performance acts as a counter-text to it. When this line is sung, Madonna is shown kneeling on the road in front of the advancing car, then turns her head back while exposing her throat back in a posture of submission. However, her voice tone and her look at the camera portray a hardness and defiance that contradict the submissiveness of her body posture and turn the question of the line into a challenge for her lover.

Author Andrew Morton, in his biography on Madonna, commented that the video was America's first introduction to Madonna's sexual politics. Author Robert Clyde Allen in his book Channels of Discourse compared the video with that of "Material Girl". According to him both the videos have an undermining ending, while employing a consistent series of puns and exhibiting a parodic amount of excess associated with Madonna's style. The discourses included in the video are those of sexuality and religion. Madonna's image of kneeling and singing about 'burning in love' performed the traditional ideological work of using the subordination and powerlessness of women in Christianity to naturalize their equally submissive position in patriarchy. Author Georges-Claude Guilbert in his book Madonna as postmodern myth commented that the representation of the male character becomes irrelevant as Madonna destabilizes the fixing and categorization of male sexuality in the video. Her utterance of having "no shame" was interpreted by author James B. Twitchell, in his book For Shame, as an attempt to separate herself from contemporary female artists of that era.


In 1983, Madonna was recording her eponymous debut album with Warner Bros producer Reggie Lucas, after Sire Records green-lighted it when her first single "Everybody" became a club hit. However, she did not have enough material for the album. Lucas brought two new songs to the project and John "Jellybean" Benitez, a DJ at Funhouse disco was called to remix the available tracks. In the meantime, due to conflict of interest, Madonna's collaborator on "Everybody", Steve Bray had sold another song "Ain't No Big Deal" to an act on another label, rendering it unavailable for Madonna's project. It was Benitez who discovered a new song written by Curtis Hudson and Lisa Stevens of the pop group Pure Energy. The song, titled "Holiday", had been turned down by Phyllis Hyman and Mary Wilson, formerly of The Supremes. Jellybean and Madonna sent the demo to their friend, Fred Zarr so he could embellish the arrangement and program the song with his synthesizer magic. After the vocals were added by Madonna, Benitez spent four days and tried to enhance the commercial appeal of the track before the April 1983 deadline. Just before it was completed, Madonna and Benitez met Fred Zarr at Sigma Sound in Manhattan where Zarr added the now familiar piano solo towards the end of the track.

Initially it was decided that "Lucky Star" would be released as a single; instead "Holiday" was released in the US when the latter became a dance hit. The original coverart for "Holiday" did not carry Madonna's picture since Sire did not want people to find out that she was not a R&B artist. Instead it carried the picture of a train station and an engine. "Holiday" was later remixed in dub and groove versions for the 1987 remix album You Can Dance It also appeared in her first greatest hits compilation, The Immaculate Collection, in a remixed and shortened form. In 2005, during an interview with CBS News, Madonna admitted that "Holiday" was her favourite among all her songs.

In the United Kingdom, "Holiday" has been released three times as a single; in January 1984, reaching number six, re-issued in August 1985 reaching number 2 (only being kept from number one by her own "Into the Groove" single). It was re-released with new artwork in 1991 to promote The Immaculate Collection with a limited edition EP titled The Holiday Collection, which contained tracks omitted from the compilation; this version reached number five. Although the song was released to promote the greatest hits collection, it did not include the shorter remix from the album, instead it included the original album version from Madonna (1983). The photography used for the 1991 release was by Steven Meisel and had previously been used for the February 1991 cover for Vogue Italia.

"Holiday" was released on September 7, 1983, and became Madonna's first hit single and remained on the charts from the timespan of Thanksgiving to Christmas in 1983. It was Madonna's first song to enter the Billboard Hot 100, at 88 on the issue dated October 29, 1983. and reached a peak of 16 on January 28, 1984 and was on the chart for 21 weeks. The song debuted at eight on the Hot Dance Club Play chart on the issue dated November 2, 1983 and was Madonna's first number one single on the Hot Dance Club Play chart remaining at the top for five weeks. It was released with "Lucky Star" as a double-A side single. The song also made an entry in the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart and peaked at 25, remaining on the chart for 20 weeks.
In Canada, the song debuted at number 48 position of the RPM singles chart on January 21, 1984 and peaked at 39. The song again entered the chart at 45 in March 1984, and peaked at 32 on April 1984. It was on the chart for 12 weeks. In the United Kingdom, "Holiday" was released in 1984 whence it charted and reached a peak of six on the chart. However, a re-release in 1985 with "Think of Me" on the B-side, saw the song enter the charts at number 32 and reached a new peak of two on the chart, being held off the number one spot by Madonna's own "Into the Groove", while being present for ten weeks. Another re-release in 1991 saw the song reach a peak of five on the chart. The song was certified gold by the British Phonographic Industry (BPI) in August 1985. According to The Official Charts Company, the song has sold 770,000 copies there. Across Europe, the song reached the top ten of Belgium, Netherlands, Germany and Ireland while reaching the top 40 in France, Italy, Sweden and Switzerland. It also made the top five in Australia. The song debuted at number 37 on the New Zealand Singles Chart, making it Madonna's debut single in the country. It peaked at number seven.

/ Video below: "Holiday" official video directed by Ed Steinberg /


In 1983, Madonna was recording her first studio album with Warner Music producer Reggie Lucas and her then boyfriend John "Jellybean" Benitez. However, she did not have that much new material to ensure a full LP album. Lucas produced a number of songs for the album, namely "Borderline", "Burning Up", "Physical Attraction", "I Know It", "Think of Me" and lastly "Lucky Star". The song was written by Madonna for DJ Mark Kamins, who previously promised to play the track at his club Danceteria, where he worked as a DJ. However, the track was instead used by Madonna for her debut album, which she planned to call Lucky Star. She believed that "Lucky Star" song, along with "Borderline", were the perfect foundation for her album. But problems arose after recording the song.

Madonna was unhappy with the way the final version turned out. According to her, Lucas used too many instruments and did not consider her ideas for the songs. This led to a dispute between the two and after finishing the album, Lucas left the project without altering the songs to Madonna's specifications. Hence, Madonna brought Benitez to remix "Borderline" and "Lucky Star", along with some of the other recorded tracks. In a later interview, Benitez reflected back on the recording sessions and commented: "She was unhappy with the whole damn thing, so I went in and sweetened up a lot of music for her, adding some guitars to 'Lucky Star', some voices, some magic. I just wanted to do the best job I could do for her. When we would play back 'Holiday' or "Lucky Star", you could see that she was overwhelmed by how great it all sounded. You wanted to help her, you know? As much as she could be a bitch, when you were in groove with her, it was very cool, very creative."
"Lucky Star" was initially decided to be released as the third single from the album, but "Holiday" had already become a dance-hit in the United States. Hence it was released as the fourth single from the album.

"Lucky Star" was released as the album's fifth single in the United States and debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 chart at 49, on the week of August 25, 1984. It finally reached a peak of four, and was present for a total of 18 weeks. It was able to enter other Billboard charts, such as Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs and Hot Adult Contemporary, where it peaked at 42 and 19 respectively. Prior to its release, the song had already reached the top of the Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart along with "Holiday". In Canada, the song debuted at position 89 of the RPM Singles chart, reaching a peak of eight in November 1984, and it was present on the chart for 19 weeks. It placed at 72 on the RPM year-end chart for 1984.

In the United Kingdom, "Lucky Star" was originally released as the album's second single in September 1983, simultaneously with "Holiday" in the United States. However, it only bubbled under the UK Singles Chart at number 171. In March 1984, it was re-issued and then debuted on the UK Singles Chart at 47, and reached a peak of 14 after three weeks. The song was present on the chart for nine weeks. According to The Official Charts Company, "Lucky Star" has sold 117,470 copies in the United Kingdom, as of August 2008. In Ireland, the song was able to reach 19 on the Irish official charts. In Australia, the song made the top 40 of the Kent Music Report chart and peaked at 36.

/ Video below: "Lucky Star" official video directed by Arthur Pierson /

The music video was directed by Arthur Pierson, and was produced by Glenn Goodwin, while Wayne Isham was in charge of photography. At the time of the song's release, Madonna's style of dress was catching on as a fashion statement among club kids and her fans. The most prominent among her fashion accessories were the crucifixes she wore as earrings and necklaces. Madonna commented that wearing a rosary and a crucifix is "kind of offbeat and interesting. I mean, everything I do is sort of tongue-in-cheeks. Besides, the crucifixes seem to go with my name." In reality, she was trying to find a separate image for herself, being inspired by then artists like Boy George, Cyndi Lauper and David Bowie, and their constantly shifting image and persona. Madonna realised the importance of her music videos and its popularity via MTV – launched in 1981 – was instrumental in popularising her image.

The rush for Madonna's fashion started with the music video for "Lucky Star". In the video, Madonna wore an all-black outfit with leggings, ankle boots, and belly button, with her tangled hair tied in a floppy black ribbon. This was coupled with a shiny black miniskirt, an earring on her right ear, cut-off gloves and rubber bangles. Madonna's friend Erika Belle was credited with designing the outfit, although biographer Mary Cross noted that Madonna was after all wearing her day-to-day outfit. Mary Lambert, then a Rhode Island School of Design graduate, was decided for directing the video. However, Arthur Pierson replaced her as the director. Warner Bros. gave Pierson a small budget to make the video, shot in an afternoon. The video starts with the close-up of Madonna's face, as she slides her sunglasses down her nose. This scene was a reference to the character of Lolita in Stanley Kubrick's 1962 film of the same name, and Audrey Hepburn in the movie Breakfast at Tiffany's (1961). The image then fades to white, denoting the celestial stars dazzle, and then resumes itself in color. Madonna is shown dancing against a stark white background, along with closeups of her mesmerised gaze. She is accompanied by Belle and brother Christopher, as backup dancers. The video ends with the initial black-and-white image repeated, but in retrograde, as Madonna puts back on the sunglasses. The taking down and putting up of those sunglasses provided a frame to contain the song, functioning like a curtain that marks the opening and closing of a stage performance.

Dance historian Sally Banes, in her book Before, between, and beyond: three decades of dance writing, noted that the video portrayed Madonna as both the subject and the object of the song. She believed that in the video, Madonna taking off her sunglasses symbolised herself as a movie star, thus creating an ambiguous characterization of herself, and a narcissistic theme. Author Peter Goodwin, in his book Television under the Tories: Broadcasting Policy 1979-1997, commented that although "Lucky Star" is not a narrative video, in the clip Madonna plays at least four characters:—the person in sunglasses looking; a break-dancing girl; an androgynous social dancer; and a seductress. The juxtaposition of all these characterizations portray Madonna as a narcissistic self-lover. Images of Madonna's body writhing against the white background generates the question whether she is addressing her lover or herself in the song. According to Goodman, Madonna creates an eroticized woman for her own pleasure only. Time noted that "(s)he's sexy, but she doesn't need men she's kind of there all by herself."


In 1982, Madonna was working with producer Reggie Lucas on her debut album. She had already composed three songs, when Lucas brought one of his own composition to the project and called it "Borderline". However, after recording the song, Madonna was unhappy with the way the final version turned out. According to her, Lucas used too many instruments and did not consider her ideas for the song. This led to a dispute between the two. After finishing the album, Lucas left the project without altering the songs to Madonna's specifications. Hence, Madonna brought her then boyfriend John "Jellybean" Benitez to remix "Borderline" and some of the other recorded tracks.

In the United States, the song became Madonna's first top ten hit when it reached position ten on the Billboard Hot 100 on June 16, 1984. The song reached a peak of two on the Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart. It also became a crossover success by charting on the Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks chart at 23. On October 22, 1998, the song was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for shipment of 500,000 copies. In Canada the song debuted at number 56 on the RPM issue dated August 4, 1984 and reached a peak of 25 on September 15, 1984. The song was on the chart for 14 weeks.
In the United Kingdom, with the original release of the song on June 2, 1984, it was able to reach a peak of only 56. However, upon re-releasing the song on January 1, 1986, it reached a new peak of two on the chart and was present for a total of nine weeks. The song was certified gold by the British Phonographic Industry (BPI) on February 1986. According to The Official Charts Company, the song has sold 310,000 copies there. Across Europe the song topped the chart in Ireland and entered the top ten of Belgium and Netherlands. It also peaked at 23 in Switzerland and 12 in Australia. In New Zealand, the song debuted at number 47, until falling then re-entering for a sole week at number 49. In New Zealand, "Borderline" is Madonna's most unsuccessful single to date
/ Video below: "Borderline" official video directed by Mary Lambert  /

"Borderline" was filmed on location in Los Angeles, California from January 30 to February 2, 1984 and was the first video that Madonna made with director Mary Lambert, who would later also direct the videos "Like a Virgin", "Material Girl", "La Isla Bonita" and "Like a Prayer". The video portrayed Madonna's then burgeoning star quality. It is regarded as one of her career-making moments when the video was started to be shown on MTV. She acted as the girlfriend of a Hispanic street guy who is picked up by a British photographer who publishes her picture on a magazine cover. The portrayal of the street life and high-fashion scene in the video was a reference to Madonna's life in the gritty, multiracial streets and clubs that she used to haunt while her career was beginning as well as the world of popularity and success she was experiencing at that moment. The storyline involved her being emotionally torn between the photographer and her boyfriend. Madonna's boyfriend in the video is portrayed as Latino and her struggles with this relationship depicted the struggle Hispanic women faced with their men. In the January 1997 issue of Rolling Stone, Mary Lambert described the video and its plot as, "Boy and girl enjoy simple pleasures of barrio love, girl is tempted by fame, boy gets huffy, girl gets famous, but her new beau's out-of-line reaction to a behavioral trifle (all she did was to spray-paint his expensive sports car) drives her back to her true love."

Image shows a group of youngsters on the pavement of a street. A blond woman stands closest in the picture. She has unkept hair and is dressed in black pants, blue jeans jacket and red socks. She is looking towards a young boy doing a back-arch on the street. The other youngsters are also dressed in tracks and pink bands around their forehead, as they watch the boy perform.

Madonna in her usual boy-toy look, dances with one of the dancers on the street of a Hispanic barrio, thus portraying the type of life she used to lead before she began her career and became famous.
The video narrative weaved the two relationship stories in color and black and white. In the color sequence, Madonna sings, flirts and seduces the Hispanic guy who becomes her boyfriend. In the black-and-white sequence she poses for the photographer, who also courts her. The video had Madonna in her usual sense of style in those years and wore her hair in a haystack, lace gloves, high heeled boots with thick socks and her trademark boy-toy belt. She changes from one shot to another in color as well as black and white while wearing an unusual array of clothes including crop-tops, T-shits, vests and sweaters coupled with cut-off pants and jeans as well as a couple of evening gowns. Posing for the photographer, Madonna looks towards the camera with challenge in her eyes thus depicting sexual aggression. At one moment in the video, she starts spraying graffiti over some lifeless classical statues thus portraying herself as a transgressor who breaks rules and attempts at innovation. With the video Madonna broke the taboo of interracial relationships. Although at first it seems that Madonna denies the Hispanic guy in favour of the photographer, later she rejects him thus implying her desire to control her own sexual pleasures or going over the established pop borderlines with lyrics like "You just keep on pushing my love, over the borderline". The contrasting image of Madonna, first as a messy blonde in the Hispanic sequence and later as a fashioned glamorous blonde, suggested that one can construct one's own image and identity. Portraying herself as a Hispanic also had the clever marketing strategy of appealing herself to Hispanic and black youths thus breaking down racial barriers.

After its airing "Borderline" attracted early attention from academics. They noted the symbolism of power in the two contrasting scenes of the video. The British photographer and his studio is decorated with the classical sculptures and nude statues holding spears in a phallic symbol. In contrast, phallic symbols portrayed in the Hispanic neighbourhood included a street lamp which Madonna embraces and a pool cue held erect by Madonna's boyfriend. Author Andrew Metz commented that with these scenes, Madonna displayed her sophisticated views on the fabrications of feminity as a supreme power rather than the normal views of oppression. Author Carol Clerk said that the videos of "Borderline" and "Lucky Star" established Madonna not as the girl-next-door, but as a sassy and smart, tough funny woman. Her clothes worn in the video were later used by designers like Karl Lagerfeld and Christian Lacroix in Paris Fashion week of the same year. Professor Douglas Kellner in his book Media Culture: Cultural Studies, Identity, and Politics Between the Modern and the Postmodern commented that the video depicted motifs and strategies which helped Madonna in her journey to become a star.

Take a look at the video below...and the rest is history.

Simply...There is one and only... Madonna.

American Bandstand Interview With Dick Clark - 1984 /

No comments:

Post a Comment