Madonna news - July 2006


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31 July - Madonna disappoints Greer
Superstar Madonna has been blasted by leading feminist author Germaine Greer for abandoning her pledge to front the "future of feminism".
Australian Greer criticises the 'Like A Virgin' hit maker for allowing religion, marriage and motherhood to overtake her desire to be a strong independent female role model.

Greer says, "She used to call herself the 'future of feminism'. Then she got DIY religion, married an Englishman and crumbled before our eyes. She started telling us that all she wanted to be was a good wife and mother, even though she worked out strenuously every day that she was honed to breaking point."
Greer also takes offence to the star's extravagant stage shows - in particular the Confessions tour which saw Madonna descend onto the stage on a cross made of disco-mirror.

She adds, "Madonna's massive cross was supposed to be covered with diamonds and Swarovski crystals, which seems a bit excessive, especially as behind were projected images of African Aids orphans." (source: Yahoo! Launch)


30 July - Madonna scores another UK Top 10 hit
Madonna's latest single Get Together debuted at a healthy #7 on the UK charts today, earning her 58th Top 10 hit. The album Confessions On A Dance Floor is at #33 rising from last week's #57 after it spent several weeks off the Top 75, while The Immaculate Collection is at #71. With the UK leg of the Confessions Tour starting today, album sales will probably rise next week!


29 July - Madonna rehearses in Cardiff
Madonna has arrived in Cardiff to start rehearsing for tomorrow's show. Follow the rehearsals in our tour diary (contains spoilers).


29 July- Madonna tops Liverpool Summer Pops' wishlist
Madonna is being lined up to headline the Summer Pops in Capital of Culture year.
The star's name was linked with the Pops today as it emerged that last year's series of summer gigs cost Liverpool council £780,000 to subsidise.
Officials said the Queen of Pop was top of the list of artists being pursued as they start preparing the line-up for 2008.
Luring Madonna to play in Liverpool for the first time would be a massive coup for the Pops as it moves to its new home at the Kings Dock arena.

Organisers said the venue's 10,000-seat capacity, compared with 4,000 in the Big Top, meant ahigher calibre of artist should be attracted to the city.
Pops promoter Chas Cole said: "We intend to be exceptionally ambitious for the 2008 line-up and Madonna is right at the top of our wishlist."
The near-£800,000 cost of last year's event was revealed in a report published after an investigation by councillors into how the Pops was operated.

But Mr Cole and Jason Harborow, chief executive of the Culture Company, said they were satisfied the Pops provided value for money, despite the subsidy. (source: icLiverpool)
~ Please bear in the mind that this article only states the 'wishlist'; there are no concrete plans for Madonna's appearance yet. Each year many festivals try to attract Madonna, but she usually refuses (with this year's Coachella being a rare exception)


28 July - H&M campaign
H&M website - click to visit "Hi, this is Madonna." That's how Madonna greets us in the new H&M radio campaign. With Get Together playing in the background, she continues: "Do you know what H&M stands for? I finally figured it out. H&M stands for Her Majesty. Wasn't that sweet of them." A male voice takes over saying "Yeah OK, we love you too. Now win tickets for Madonna's show in London or Paris!" Madonna finishes the advert with: "Let's get together. See you at my show!"

The H&M website opens with the Madonna ticket competition, but strangely enough uses Madonna's signature and none of the new pictures. The winner of the competition receives two air tickets, one night in a hotel for two people, transport to and from the show, two great seats at the show and a light meal. Good luck to everyone participating!


28 July - Moments of sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll
With MTV turning 25 next week, USA Today has compiled 25 key moments of sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll. Madonna features in quite a few...

4. Not like a virgin
Sept. 14, 1984
The moment: Madonna ushered in 1984's inaugural Video Music Awards with a bang (and a bustier) by performing her hit Like a Virgin.
What made it special: Though relatively tame by today's standards, her writhing on stage and sexually suggestive moves helped cement her reputation as a risqué performer and set the stage for even more risqué MTV VMAs shows to come.

6. A united front 2
July 13, 1985
The moment: The multi-venue music collaboration Live Aid, organized by Geldof and Ure, aired to raise money for famine relief in Ethiopia. Bands such as The Who, Duran Duran and Hall & Oates performed around the globe, with main locations in London and Philadelphia.
What made it special: The outgrowth of Band Aid drew 1.5 billion viewers across 100 countries for the live broadcast, one of the largest-scale satellite linkups and TV broadcasts of all time. It raised more than $280 million. And in July 2005, artists including U2, Madonna, Pink Floyd and Jay-Z performed at Live 8, 10 simultaneous concerts around the world to raise awareness of world poverty. It drew an estimated 3 billion viewers.

17. You gotta Love it
Sept. 4, 1996
The moment: During the red-carpet arrivals at the Video Music Awards, Courtney Love interrupted Kurt Loder's interview with Madonna by hurling her compact at them. The rocker stole the Material Girl's thunder when she stumbled on stage — babbling about everything from Madonna's shoes to her desire to be a candy striper — then fell down.
What made it special: Although Madonna maintained her composure, Love's brazen interruption marks one of the most embarrassing moments in VMA history.

24. Girl meets girl
Aug. 28, 2003
The moment: Madonna performed her classic hit Like a Virgin with Christina Aguilera and Britney Spears at the Video Music Awards. The Material Girl caused a sensation when she shared an open-mouthed kiss with Spears.
What made it special: The network hyped a "big event" before the broadcast, but no one quite expected a same-sex kiss between a music icon and a pop sex kitten. "I didn't know it was going to be that long and everything," Spears told CNN.


28 July - The big 4-ohmygoodness! Are these women hot!
There are a hundred reasons to still be crazy for Madonna - not the least of which are her abs, svelte thighs and toned butt.
Watch the Queen of Pop strut around onstage and it will be obvious that two kids and four decades have done little to keep Madonna from striking the sexiest of poses.

At nearly 48, Madonna is one hot mama. And that sex appeal has made her beloved by women of all ages, especially her peers.
"What Madonna says to women in particular is that at age 47 it can be done," says Deborah Wilker, a veteran entertainment journalist and bureau chief for The Hollywood Reporter. "You don't have to get married and live in the suburbs and look like (expletive)."

Wilker says the message is "43 or 44 is like the new 31. I think a lot of women find that very inspiring."
Madonna, of course, isn't the only middle-aged celebrity who remains a sex symbol. Fortysomething stars such as Demi Moore, Vivica A. Fox, Heather Locklear and Teri Hatcher are showing that youth doesn't have a monopoly on hotness.

"I think the idea of a woman being sexy has expanded a lot, and it has a lot to do with actresses turning 40 or above," says Ila Stanger, managing editor of More magazine, a popular lifestyle magazine dedicated to women 40 and older.
The attraction of today's fortysomething stars is not just that they make men salivate, Stanger says.
"I think what is attractive about them isn't just their looks - or in the case of Madonna, their incredible bodies," she says. "It is a sense that they are smart and they have a sense of humor. And I think that adds to the allure."

And that age-related je ne sais quoi is charming Hollywood's hottest younger men.
Madonna, for example, is married to 37-year-old Guy Ritchie, the handsome writer-director of "Snatch" and, most recently, "Revolver." She gave birth to the couple's son, Rocco, when she was 42. Last year, Moore married Ashton Kutcher, the "That '70s Show" heartthrob who is 15 years her junior. She is rumored to be pregnant with the couple's first, and her fourth, child.

"Friends" star Courteney Cox Arquette, 42, is expecting her second child with 34-year-old hubby David Arquette. And Vivica A. Fox, who will turn 42 in July, had a high-profile relationship - and breakup - with rapper 50 Cent, despite an age difference of more than a decade.
Though in real life she is married to a man about her age, critics and moviegoers didn't have any problem believing a then-40-year-old Angela Bassett could catch sexy 26-year-old Taye Diggs in "How Stella Got Her Groove Back."

Seeing close-ups of Bassett and other stars, it's not difficult to understand how they are landing young heartthrobs. Part of a celebrity's job is to look good, and the women easily play the part. Their skin is seemingly flawless, with nary a wrinkle or spot - arguably thanks to surgery in some cases - and their bodies are lean and toned.
In other words, they don't look like your mother's - or grandmother's - 40.

In fact, if your mother or grandmother was a sweet woman who wore big, homemade sweaters and always had fresh-baked cookies on the table, then they probably have nothing in common with her.
"These stars are just a daily reminder that this is how 40 looks and this is what 50 looks like," Stanger says, "and it is certainly not the way your mother looked." (source: The State)


27 July - Billboard rates chances for Jump on US radio
Hi Keith,
I just read the Madonna article U.S. Radio Hangs Up On Madonna. It made a lot of sense. It put into perspective how radio handled each of Madonna's tracks.
My first question is, what is "call out research?" This phenomenon is supposedly responsible for her previous three tracks not getting the airplay that her fans feel they deserve.

To be fair, I am aware that her fans alone can't decide whether a song is going to be played. I also just recently found out after hearing that Get Together was going to be her last single released off her album, Jump is in fact going to be released. I am so excited about this news. I think that this song is more pop-oriented than her previous releases off the record -- even though I think that Hung Up and Sorry were great songs. I wonder, what changed Warner Bros.' minds?

As everyone knows, Madonna's Confessions tour is hugely successful. Does this say anything to radio about Madonna's continuing appeal to attract and excite people? Also, her tour is going to be aired on NBC, I hear. This would also be great exposure for her, as I'm sure people will tune in simply out of curiosity. I've said quite a bit, but what I really want to know is the concept behind callout research and your professional opinion on Madonna's Jump.

You were right on in your opinions on Sorry and Get Together facing an uphill battle. They both failed on the radio in the U.S. Do you think Jump will face the same fate here in America?
Thank you,
Matthew Tarantino, Boston

Hi Matthew,
Glad you enjoyed the article on Madonna -- and why her singles aren't getting play on American radio but are successful overseas.
Call out research is where radio listeners are reached by telephone (hence the term "call out") and are played short samples of songs. The listener is then asked their opinion on the tune –- usually by rating the song with a number. This research is then used to determine what stations should play what song, how often, at what time of day, etc.
Regarding Jump as the fourth single from Confessions -- I'm pretty sure it was always slated to be a single. I think the order of the third and fourth singles got re-arranged at some point. But, as far as I'm aware, Jump was almost always going to be a single.

Now, will Jump succeed on American radio? Warner Bros. is optimistic and they seem committed to getting it on the airwaves. They are aiming to make it a genuine hit on Adult Top 40 and Adult Contemporary radio stations before they bring it to Mainstream Top 40 outlets.
Personally, I really think Jump is a great pop song -- way better than Get Together. The latter was probably just too odd for American radio. Jump, however, is very accessible and stands a chance at success on U.S. airwaves. (source: Ask Billboard)


26 July - Win front row tickets for London
Go to capitalgold.com now to find out how you can win FRONT ROW tickets to see Madonna live in London. You can also win top-price tickets to her concert on August 15th as well as a DAB Digital Radio by playing Beat The Intro: Madonna Edition. There will also be more top-price tickets up for grabs in a special competition that goes online on Monday August 7. Good luck!


24 July - LAP video is 'top rule-breaker'
Madonna's Like a Prayer, condemned by Christian organisations as blasphemous upon its release in 1989, has topped a poll of videos which "broke the rules".
The clip showed the singer dancing around burning crosses and kissing a black Christ-like figure in a church.

It came first in a survey of 10,000 MTV viewers, with Madonna's songs Ray of Light and Vogue also in the top five.
Baby One More Time by Britney Spears was number two, with Michael Jackson's 13-minute epic Thriller in third place. (source: BBC)


24 July - Madonna wraps up for the beach
Next Magazine On a beach dotted with bikini-clad women, there is only one way to stand out.
But although she's notorious for cavorting semi-naked, Madonna had little choice but to cover up at a beach in Miami with her daughter Lourdes, who wore a normal swimming costume.

The queen of pop walked between the beach and her hotel wrapped in white cloth from head to toe, looking unusually modest and perhaps more like an Arab woman than a sunbather on a Miami beach.
The dramatic towel wrap-up, one can safely assume, was to protect her from the sun.
Not one to tan, Madonna is on her World Confessions tour and is no doubt keen to stay milky white. (source: Daily Mail)


23 July - Record amount of tour stops in Confessions Tour
A second show in the Osaka Dome has been added on September 17th. Tickets will go on sale on August 5th.
Meanwhile, an official announcement of the tour stops in Moscow is expected any day now. Media have been reporting these will take place in the Sparrow Hills, Moscow on September 11 and 12. This would bring the total of tour stops for the Confessions Tour on 61 (34 shows in the North America, 23 in Europe and 4 in Japan). That's 4 more than the Blond Ambition Tour, which held the record of most tour stops so far. The Girlie Show was the only tour that covered stops in other regions than North America, Europe and Japan.


23 July - Madonna closes Cardiff roads
Fans travelling to Cardiff for the Madonna concert on Sunday July 30 need to plan their journey ahead of time and be aware there will be
road closures operating in the city centre.
With a huge crowd expected at the Millennium Stadium and many central road closures operating between 7.30pm and 11.30pm, the best way to travel to Cardiff is by car share or by using the various park and rides sites.

Cars should exit at junction 33 of the M4 and follow signs for Millennium Stadium Park and Ride car parks. It costs £10 per car. The drop-off points in the city centre are within 5 minutes walk of the Stadium.
The car parks will be manned from 2pm, with the first bus at 2.30pm. The last bus will leave the pick-up point at 11.30pm after the concert, with the car parks closing at midnight. Stewards will be on hand to help any disabled drivers needing assistance.

Due to the city centre road closures, the public are advised that ALL buses travelling in, out and around the city WILL be affected.
More information is available from traffic-wales.com , Traveline Cymru on 0870 608 2 608 or traveline-cymru.org.uk, Cardiff Bus at cardiffbus.com, liftshare.com or sewtacarshare.com (source: News Wales)


23 July - US & Japan sales info
Hung Up passes 700K in USA Digital Sales. This track has definite digital legs in the USA, especially considering the mediocre airplay it received.
Billboard 200 Rankings: Confessions on a Dance Floor drops 3 spots to No. 138, its 35th week on the chart. Sales increased 1% to 6,439; cume stands at 1,516,279. I'm Going to Tell You a Secret, as expected, plunges again, down to No. 199 in is 4th (and most likely final) week on the chart. Sales dropped 20% to 4,354; cume stands at 44,515.
COADF Certified 2 Platinum in Japan. That's for shipments of 500,000 units - her biggest album in Japan since The Immaculate Collection. Oricon sales of the title are around 390,000 to date.
(source: jimmyrad @ MIR)


22 July - Madonna clears up adoption rumours
Madonna has cleared up rumours she and husband Guy Ritchie are planning to adopt a child by revealing she's actually planning to play mum to an African village.

The pop superstar set tongues wagging when news broke about her reported links to African adoption agencies last month.
More recent reports even suggested the singer and her movie maker husband were even seeking new dad Brad Pitt's advice on adoption after he became the legal guardian of girlfriend Angelina Jolie's two adopted children.

But now Madonna has revealed, through her aides, she has much bigger plans.
In a statement released yesterday, a spokeswoman says, "Actually she is adopting a village of children... Madonna is participating in the building of a school and home for hundreds of kids in Malawi, Africa and that is her current passion and commitment." (source: Yahoo)


22 July - Madonna to give first-ever Russia concerts
US pop queen Madonna will perform in Russia for the first time on September 11 and 12 as part of her Confessions world tour, a Russian organiser said.
Madonna's two concerts will take place on a specially-constructed stage on the Sparrow Hills overlooking the city centre, close to where Moscow State University is located, ITAR-TASS news agency reported.

"Decorations and costumes for the singer will arrive in Russia on 27 trailers," the organiser was quoted by ITAR-TASS as saying.
Madonna is set to perform in Britain, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the Netherlands as part of her 2006 tour, according to the star's official website. (source: Yahoo)


21 July - US radio hangs up on Madonna
Madonna is in the midst of a sold-out North American trek that may end up being the top-grossing tour ever by a female artist. But this on-the-road success is not carrying over to American radio airwaves. In the United States, the three singles from Madonna's latest Warner Bros. album, Confessions on a Dance Floor, have not been embraced by mainstream top 40 radio.
Hung Up got middling airplay, Sorry was barely played, and Get Together has been all but ignored by pop stations. Naturally, this state of affairs has left executives at her Warner Bros. label -- and more than a few fans -- wondering, what gives?

More than 3,300 fans have signed an appeal at petitiononline.com. The "End the Madonna on U.S. Radio Boycott" petition is addressed to Clear Channel Communications CEO Mark P. Mays. Message boards at Entertainment Weekly and VH1, among others, are rife with everything from support for Madonna to conspiracy theories about why she can't crack the radio dial.

Warner Bros. was aware that the songs on Confessions could present challenges at mainstream top 40 radio, acknowledges Tom Biery, senior VP of promotions at Warner Bros. "Top 40 radio is so hip-hop-driven," he says. "We were coming in with a global pop star who made a dance record."

Guy Zapoleon, president of radio consulting firm Zapoleon Media Strategies, calls it an "interesting dilemma for the woman who certainly held the 'Queen of Pop' title for almost 15 years." Madonna's ability to redefine herself is well-documented, and Zapoleon says that this has helped her keep a "leading edge" to the new group of pop music fans that comes along every three to five years.

But this time, Madonna may have turned left while the pop climate was turning right. Other pop chameleons such as Nelly Furtado and Mariah Carey reinvented themselves with recent rhythmic/hip-hop-leaning singles. Madonna opted instead to return to her dance-pop roots.

Madonna has had no such airplay problems internationally. Since its release last November, Confessions on a Dance Floor has topped the charts in 29 countries and sold more than 8 million copies worldwide, according to Warner Bros. For the week ending July 15, the album's third single, Get Together, had a radio audience of fewer than 1 million listeners in the United States (aggregate, based on market size and station share). Conversely, in the United Kingdom, where all three singles have been A-listed by BBC Radio 1, the single had 38.4 million listeners.

Except for dance radio outlets like KNGY San Francisco, KNRJ Phoenix and KNHC Seattle, Madonna is missing from the terrestrial radio landscape in the United States. John Peake, PD at KNGY, believes that mainstream top 40 radio programmers have completely missed the boat on this project. "When Hung Up didn't get instant callout, the stations gave up on it," he says. "If they had given it more time, the callout would've come home."

Confessions has been healthy at retail: It has moved 1.5 million copies, already double that of its predecessor, 2003's American Life, which has sold 666,000, according to Nielsen SoundScan. File-sharing stats from BigChampagne and support from MTV's "TRL" are also solid. But, Biery says, "Radio still looks at callout research."

As Warner Bros. gears up for the release of the album's fourth single, Jump, Biery remains optimistic, especially since the song was heard in TV and radio spots for the film "The Devil Wears Prada." The label will take a different strategy with this single, Biery says. "We'll begin with AC and hot AC formats," he notes. "Our goal is to have a true hit record with callout and then bring it back to the mainstream top 40 world." (source: Billboard)


21 July - Win Madonna's guitar!
Guitars = cool. Madonna = really cool. Seeing Madonna live on her birthday and taking her guitar home with you = bonkers! And that's exactly what we're offering...
Once again Madonna is heading out on a huge World Tour, the Confessions Tour.
On her travels, her Madgesty will take to the stage around the UK, including a special London date on her birthday - Wembley on August 16.

We're giving one lucky winner a pair of tickets to be the special London show on Madonna's birthday, plus travel to and from London (if you're not from London already!) and a plush hotel to stay in that night.
But does it stop there? Hell no!

We're also giving that lucky winner Madonna's guitar! And we're not talking about some guitar that Madonna's touched once, we're talking about a guitar that was actually owned and played on tour by Madonna! Cool huh. (Visit MTV.co.uk to find out how to enter the competition)


21 July - Tour to be broadcasted in November
NBC will broadcast "Madonna: The Confessions Tour Live" - a two-hour special set to air in November 2006, the network announced Friday.
The special will be taped this summer at Wembley Stadium in London, UK during the pop icon's worldwide sold-out 25-city Confessions Tour.

The special marks the first-ever broadcast network performance by the international superstar.
"Madonna is one of the greatest artists of our time and never fails to generate excitement," said Kevin Reilly, NBC Entertainment President. "We think this is going to be a big event for television."
The concert special will feature songs from Madonna's recent multi-platinum Warner Bros. Records release Confessions On A Dance Floor, which debuted at No. 1 in 29 countries and has sold over eight million copies around the globe.

The broadcast will also include some of Madonna's greatest hits from her legendary career.
In the course of that career, thestar has racked up a staggering 35 No. 1 hits on Billboard's Dance charts.
The multi-Grammy winning artist, songwriter, producer, best-selling children's book author, video visionary and cultural icon has sustained an unrivaled reputation for astonishing stage spectacles and has made musical history many times over, including international record sales of over 200 million albums. (source: Access Hollywood)


20 July - Madonna on cover of Next Magazine
Next Magazine NEXT Magazine, the largest and most-widely distributed gay/alternative magazine in the New York City metro area, published an exclusive 7-page pictorial spread from Madonna's latest Confessions Tour that hit Madison Square Garden in late June. The issue - billed as a special Madonna Collector's Issue - has already garnered press on several online sites such as fashiontribes.com, toptensources.com and others. This is the third time in the history of the NEXT Magazine that Madonna has been the cover girl. (source: press release @ PR Web)
~ Madonna is also on the cover of this week's Q Magazine in the UK (The 80s Issue) .


20 July - Madonna's upcoming projects *rumour*
From fansite MadonnaTribe: "Jump, the 4th and the final commercial single from Confessions On A Dance Floor, will include amazing remixes by Junior Sanchez and Axwell among others.
After the Confessions Tour, Madonna will be very busy promoting her new book, the sequel to The English Roses, with lots of appearances, but the most exiting news is, without a doubt, that there's a possibily of a new album towards the end of the year. "

~ Since the release of Confessions On A Dance Floor, Madonna has been busy with promoting the album on a promo tour and now a full-scale stage tour. This means she hasn't had time to spend in a studio recording a new album. If we're receziving new material in 2006, it is likely to be a remix album or something similar.


20 July - TIC is 5th best selling album in UK
A new update of the list of best selling UK albums of all time was published on the site of the BPI (British Phonographic Industry). The Immaculate Collection appears as 5th in the list, passing Abba's 'Gold'. This is the Top 10:

1. BEATLES - SGT PEPPER'S LONELY HEARTS CLUB BAND
2. MICHAEL JACKSON - BAD
3. DIRE STRAITS - BROTHERS IN ARMS
4. OASIS - (WHAT'S THE STORY) MORNING GLORY
5. MADONNA - IMMACULATE COLLECTION
6. ABBA - GOLD
7. SIMPLY RED - STARS
8. QUEEN - GREATEST HITS
9. MICHAEL JACKSON - THRILLER
10. SHANIA TWAIN - COME ON OVER


17 July - Paul Oakenfold to tour with Madonna
Paul Oakenfold, who is currently on the road in support of his new album, A Lively Mind will join Madonna's Confessions tour in Cardiff, Wales, July 30.
He will also open shows in Rome, Italy; Dusseldorf and Hanover, Germany; Horsens, Denmark; and Amsterdam in the Netherlands.
"This is a fantastic opportunity," Oakenfold said. "I'm really looking forward to the challenge - I've got a lot of respect for Madonna as an artist, and have enjoyed a great working relationship in the past-which I hope to continue."

The following are Paul Oakenfold's supporting dates on Madonna's Confessions tour:
July 30 – Cardiff, WAL (Millennium Stadium)
August 6 – Rome, ITL (Olympic Stadium)
August 20 – Düsseldorf, GER (LTU Arena)
August 22 – Hannover, GER (AWD Arena)
August 24 – Horsens, DMK (Forum Horsens Outdoor)
September 3 – Amsterdam, NET (Amsterdam Arena)
September 4 – Amsterdam, NET (Amsterdam Arena)
(source: Groovevolt)


17 July - Williams worried about Madonna tribute
Robbie Williams has written a tribute to his heroine Madonna - but is nervous that the pop queen will now think he's stalking her. The Rock DJ singer and The Pet Shop Boys penned the song She'S Madonna for his forthcoming album 1974. Pet Shop Boys frontman Neil Tennant says, "Apparently she likes it. Rob feared she'd think he was stalking her" (source: ContactMusic)

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