Sometimes it’s crazy to think about all of the amazing musicians and bands that have come out of Detroit. Our city has been the home to some of the world’s top performers, artists, and bands – and it will forever go down in history as a music capital of the world because of that. One of the biggest stars to get her start in our shining city is Madonna. The queen of pop. With a career that has lasted through three decades (and counting!), it’s no wonder we have decided to dedicate this week’s Detroit Proud Playlist to the dancing queen herself.

Madonna Louise Ciccone, better known as simply Madonna, was born in Bay City, Michigan. Her father worked for General Motors, and she grew up outside of Detroit in Pontiac. From a very young age, she knew she wanted to be a performer. After high school, she received a full-ride dance scholarship to the University of Michigan (FUN FACT: Madonna’s daughter Lourdes is entering her first year at the University of Michigan this fall!). After only a short time there though, she dropped out and moved to New York City to pursue her career in dance and music.

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Madonna said of her move to the Big Apple, “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 work right away as a back-up dancer in many productions, and it wasn’t long before she was hard at work on her first single and album.



Madonna, a self-titled album, was released in 1983. It went on to reach number 8 on the US Billboard Top 200 chart and started her career with a bang. The success of her first album helped her go on to make an even bigger hit with her second album, Like A Virgin – it reached number 1 on the US Billboard Top 200 chart, and number 1 on the UK Albums Chart. The dance-pop album has sold over 21 million copies worldwide today and is considered one of the best-selling albums of all time.

Madonna’s not only a talented musician, though, but also a dancer and actress – having appeared in over 20 films. She’s won numerous awards – two Golden Globes (nominated for seven!) and seven Grammy Awards (nominated for a whopping 28!), as well as many others. She was also inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2008, as well as being inducted into the UK Music Hall of Fame in 2004.

Various music journalists, critical theorists, and authors have deemed Madonna the most influential female recording artist of all time. Author Carol Clerk wrote that, “During her career, Madonna has transcended the term ‘pop star’ to become a global cultural icon.”

So, without further ado, we’ve cultivated a list of 10 of our favorite Madonna songs…check ’em out!

From 1984’s Like A Virgin

Like A Virgin


1. “Material Girl”
2. “Like A Virgin”

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From 1989’s Like A Prayer

Like A Prayer


3. “Like A Prayer”
4. “Express Yourself”

From 1998’s Ray Of Light

Ray Of Light


5. “Nothing Really Matters”
6. “Frozen”

From 2000’s Music



7. “Music”
8. “Don’t Tell Me”

From 2005’s Confessions On A Dance Floor

Confessions On A Dancefloor


9. “Hung Up”
10. “Get Together”
There you have it!

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For more on Madonna, check out her website here!