In 1980 Madonna formed 'Emmy' with her former boyfriend, Stephen
Bray whom she later broke up with to write and produce a number
of solo disco and dance songs that would bring her local fame
in New York dance clubs, especially Danceteria, (a specific notable
nightclub located in New York City which operated from 1982 until
1986. It was located at 30 West 21st Street.) and Kansas Kansas.
Mark Kamins (a popular NY DJ/Producer) came across Madonna's
demo and passed it on to Sire Records. It was during this time
that Madonna landed her first starring film role, (a
part in a low-budget independent film, 'A Certain Sacrifice' which
would later prove as another skeleton to haunt her further down
Finally in 1982 Madonna signed with Sire records for a single
deal, paying her $5,000. The name of her first single was, 'Everybody',
which was produced by Mark Kamins. 'Everybody' peaked at number
3 on the Billboard Dance chart as well as gaining recognition
on R&B radio station. This lead caused some people to assume
that Madonna was an African American artist. Sire Records were
concerned if they revealed that she was white, they would loose
her 'black' audience (which was huge at the time) so there were
no pictures of her on the sleeve of the records.
Madonna's second single, 'Burning Up' also reached number 3
on the Billboard Hot Dance/Club Play Chart, however she would
not establish herself until the release of her third single,
'Holiday' which was released in July 1983. 'Holiday' would later
hit number 16 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in January 1984
and would become her first top hit single in several countries.
In July, 1983, at long last, Madonna released her first album,
'Madonna' (produced by Reggie Lucas and John 'Jellybean' Benitez
of whom Madonna had a brief affair) which peaked at number 8
on the Billboard Top 200 Albums chart and received five platinum
certifications from the RIAA. 'Madonna' was composed of her first
three singles as well as the future top 10 hits, 'Borderline'
and 'Lucky Star'. At first, 'Madonna' did not look like it was
going to be a big hit but got some big boosts from her music
videos which would reward her with nationwide exposure. MTV was
a new cable channel and they played her videos over and over.
Recognizing a good thing when they saw it, MTV aggressively
marketed Madonna's image as a playful, sexy combination of punk
and pop. She and her 'elaborate music videos' soon became permanent
features on the music channels.