Dumbing Down The Sound Introduction™: Madonna's Disastrous Effect on Women's Music and Culture

In the States circa 1984 at least, once Madonna arrived Cyndi Lauper, Jody Watley, Heart, Tina, Pat Benatar and others were all effectively marginalized and shelved by the media within two years although they still had many fans. Anyone who came after Madonna was comparatively ignored. Whitney Houston sold huge records and was the top US Box Office ACTRESS for TWO years with "The Bodyguard" and "The Preachers Wife" (not a feat madonna has even come close to accomplishing) but appeared on no major fashion magazine covers nor was granted huge media buzz. NOT ONE of those singers received a vanity fair, vogue, bazaar or other major fashion mag covers Madonna was clearly all the press wanted. That has NOT made her a powerful woman only a very lucky and coddled one. It took the obliteration BY THE MEDIA of an entire generation of other, much more talented female singers to keep her famous.

So who did madonna have to fight over the pop charts in the mid 80s to mid 90s? NONE of the gals who charted back then received the career longevity they deserved or made anywhere near the money they should especially compared to who is on the charts currently. (Brickell, Suzanne Vega, Sinead, Natalie Merchant, Lisa Stansfield, Taylor Dayne) were NOT given ANY media attention at least in the states. The media just wanted madonna. that was ALL you got. It was 24/7 in every magazine, entertainment news show, news paper
Post Mtv in the 80s meant if you were a female singer who was not Madonna you stood way behind in line with the media. Before the internet that meant you could go from headlining stadiums to half empty clubs in a few short years like all the hair cut metal guys did post Nirvana or Debbie Harry, the genius, who was playing movie theatres in the 90s.

No media buzz no fanbase back then. Once madonna got too "Bang Bus/JackAss porno" and the media was turned off THEN you saw the Lilith Fair women, (Sarah M, Jewel, Alanis, Fiona Apple, Paul Cole, Shaun Colvin, Dido) emerge and new superstars like Shania and Mariah. For a moment it looked like things might go in a singer songwriter direction but the media was not having any of it. Thus Britney and the Bush era Pop tarts arrived and seemingly overnight, the Lilith Fair gals vanished. Madonna "reappeared with a comeback" (she never went away) and now it is just an army of singing madonna spawns apart from Adele, Lady Gaga (who is an accomplished musician) and a few others. Women's pop music is now at its lowest point in history.

Madonna now has to compete with about TEN other huge female stars. Taylor Swift, Adele, Katy Perry, Nick Minaj, Beyonce, Rihanna, Spears, Clarkson, Cyrus, Lady Gaga and other lesser ones like Pink, Jessica, Christina, Gomez (less meaning buzz, all three are still worth millions upon millions) etc yet many I named are all going into their SECOND decade of VERY high profile careers.

Lady Gaga who is often accused of copying the Queen of copies, has to at least compete with others on a level playing field. She may not retain mega status she has had since 2008 but if Britney and pink are still high profile after 12 plus years which they are she will be too and so will Katy perry. The message in US women's Pop music is clear-be a brand like Madonna, be corporate like Madonna and sell like her. Music is almost an afterthought now.

Madonna never took a rest these past few year she had her feature turkey, gyms opening in impoverished Mexico City, made in China clothing lines and tons of media space as always. She has never ever really left the public eye and retreated. Ever. And we all know why. It would be like Murdoch taking two years off to go and live on a desert island alone.


  1. ALL of Lady Gaga's music is shit. You can't say that about Madonna. She has made questionable stuff but she's also made brilliant stuff. "Lady Gaga's" music is just plain garbage.

  2. I'm not a huge fan of Lady Gaga but the rock influence and her piano playing is a refreshing change from so many people, including Madonna who can't play any instruments. I can see why people like "Like A Prayer" but that song only exists because of a Black gospel choir and would be nothing without that back up.i think its clear NONE of the hits would have been important to people without videos and the juggernaut over magazine covers. You can say that about Katy Perry today too but not about Lady Gaga.

    American Life is the only disc I ever heard all the way through that I care for because it was so tired and such an attempt to be political that it failed but was actually interesting in it's failure. like a soccer mom walking around in a Che Tshirt paying her nanny slave wages while she applies a "Save Tibet" bumper sticker to her minivan who will not see the hypocrisy or cannot-ever. My friend Tim made me listen to it when we'd drive out to the mall.

    Dear Jessie, is the one song of her's that I think is truly great. Mainly beacuse of the video she's not in that is 80s cheese and because the song, Like Wilson Phillips' stuff reflects the optimism of its time. I love the structure and think it is just a great piece. Lady Gaga just is more of a rocker and musician as is Adele and that's what I love. They were both composing as kids while Madonna wanted to be dancer until way late in the game.

  3. "I'm not a huge fan of Lady Gaga but the rock influence and her piano playing is a refreshing change from so many people, including Madonna who can't play any instruments."

    Rock influence ? lol

    About as rock as Elton John, Kelly Clarkson and Eurovision Eurotrash.

  4. And, I was born to a rocker, whose friend influenced many greats. Also grew up around the family of one of the greats you love.

    So I'm not talking from an amateurs viewpoint.

    Stefanie Germanotta's "composing" extended to writing songs for The Pussycat Dolls.

    "while Madonna wanted to be dancer until way late in the game"

    Yes. Being a superstar at 23 is "way late in the game".

    What a load of crock

  5. Madonna was not a super star at 23 in 1981 she was unknown then and was not huge until almost half a decade later in 1985/1986 when she was 26/27. is that what you were referring to?

    Does not matter if you or I don't like the tunes, Lady Gaga grew up taking piano lessons and writing music as did Adele. Madonna did not study music as a child or grow up around music. She won't sell a 10th of what she did. The public wants people like Adele who can offer music not an image or clothing. I'm not sure if LG can make the transition and maintain that kind of fame but that's not the point-the point is she's a skilled musician and madonna is not.

    When people simply throw out "I knew so and so" and "I grew up with a famous rocker" and offer no names or nothing to back it THAT denotes load of crock.

  6. So reductive... Here: http://www.muumuse.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/600px-The_Fame_Monster.jpg and here: http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_Kew0IMP69is/TQNiVo-Xy_I/AAAAAAAAAQ0/lvMOCAsGZEE/S240/lady-gaga-fame-monster--large-msg-125876925506.jpg are two images of Lady Gaga "crying" blood or mascara, which Madonna seems to have ripped off at the end of her "Girl Gone Wild" video. I can't find any stills yet, but this is an accurate illustration someone made: http://24.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m19pjoMuFA1qcbwd5o1_500.jpg

  7. Hi SuperAmanda! I’m not sure if you got my last post, which told you about M ripping off Lady Gaga’s leaky-mascara pics from the “Fame Monster” era. I think I’ve discovered yet another sneaky rip-off, this time from the eighties. In some scenes from the “La Isla Bonita” video, Madonna approaches a large open window. They eerily resemble a 1925 Salvador Dali painting of a girl looking out a window at the sea. I’ve seen the piece titled “Figure at Window” (translations may vary). M stands on the right-hand side of the window, just like the girl. She also has her right sole exposed, although M is barefoot. The general style of the curtains and the uncluttered space around the window convinces me this was intentional. Being an intellectual snob who collects art and Spanish culture, she has definitely come across this painting!
    Signed, "Mammon-donna"

    1. Would you say her costumes from the opening segment of the MDNA tour are a rip-off of "Faster Pussycat" and especially Tura Satana? I wonder if someone from her camp has been reading your other webpages?
      Signed, Mammon-donna

      (P.S. I used to call myself "Listal Fan" because I love the comprehensive list of rip-offs. And then you made this site)

  8. Total rip off though of course she's unable to do Tura's Amazonian upper body. Arianne Phillips is such a RIP OFF!!!

    1. Hey, Amanda - it's been a few months, but unfortunately the Hag is still getting press for each stupid stunt she pulls on tour. And by the way, we're supposed to believe she actually donated those stage dollars to Hurricane Sandy victims instead of wiping her a$$ with them? Right....
      Firstly, do ya think her photo for her new stinky perfume is a rip-off pose of Gaga in that she's also got her armpit in our faces? Secondly, I'm dying to hear your take on what she did to her butt, LOL. It almost looks to me like she wears some kind of weird "compression garters" and hikes them up as high as she can. And maybe she's got some kind of high-tech padded spanx - because in one of her "cheerleader-bending-over" photos, her rump looks lop-sided. What do you think?

      Signed, "Mammon-donna"

  9. Think you will find it is most definitely Gaga doing all the copying.

    And Madonna's reference to Gaga in the Give Me All Your Luvin video is obviously intentional, the baby crying (gaga) at the end of the video and then being thrown into the trash (duh!).

    Oh and Madonna ripping off Gaga (Alejandro) ripping off Madonna (Vogue) for Girl Gone Wild - again, making a point. It's GENIUS - you are obviously far too dumb to see the big picture.

    1. This video you posted is a humoristic parody. You are obviously far too dumb and lazy to even read its description. Someone who takes such comparisons seriously has definitely mental issues.
      You are right on one point. GMAYL which copies from Kylie, Karen Kamon, Alizee etc. also copies from Gaga. Alone walking the street at night, dancing in front of the brick wall, coming inside the house by window are obvious references to The Edge of Glory.
      What makes me really laugh is that for videos comparing Gaga and Madonna people often use 'she's not me' song which is plagiarism from Sezen Aksu's 'yaz'.