Mini BiographyMadonna (born Madonna Louise Ciccone; August 16, 1958) is an American recording artist, actress and entrepreneur. Born in Bay City, Michigan and raised in Rochester Hills, Michigan, she moved to New York City in 1977, for a career in modern
dance. After performing as a member of the pop musical groups Breakfast Club and Emmy, she released her self-titled debut album, Madonna in 1983 by Sire Records.
A series of hit singles from her studio albums Like a Virgin (1984) and True Blue (1986) gained her global recognition, establishing her as a pop icon for pushing the boundaries of lyrical content in mainstream popular music and imagery
in her music videos, which became a fixture on MTV. Her recognition was augmented by the film Desperately Seeking Susan (1985) which widely became seen as a Madonna vehicle, despite her not playing the lead. Expanding on the use of religious
imagery with Like a Prayer (1989), Madonna received positive critical reception for her diverse musical productions, while at the same time receiving criticism from religious conservatives and the Vatican. In 1992, Madonna founded the Maverick
corporation, a joint venture between herself and Time Warner. The same year, she expanded the use of sexually explicit material in her work, beginning the release of the studio album Erotica, followed by the publishing of the coffee table
book Sex, and starring in the erotic thriller Body of Evidence, all of which received negative responses from conservatives and liberals alike.
In 1996, Madonna played the starring role in the film Evita, for which she won the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a Musical or Comedy. Madonna's seventh studio album Ray of Light (1998) became one of her most critically acclaimed,
recognized for its lyrical depth. In 2005, Madonna released Confessions on a Dance Floor, which earned the Grammy Award for Best Electronic/Dance Album. Her eleventh studio album Hard Candy (2008), became her seventh to debut at number one
on the Billboard 200 albums chart. Departing from Warner Bros. Records, Madonna signed an unprecedented $120 million dollar contract with Live Nation the same year.
Madonna is ranked by the Recording Industry Association of America as the best-selling female rock artist of the twentieth century and the second top-selling female artist in the United States with sixty-three million certified albums;
she has sold over two-hundred million albums worldwide. In 2007, Guinness World Records listed her as the world's most successful female recording artist of all time and she was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame the following year.
Considered to be one of the most influential women in contemporary music, Madonna has been known for continually reinventing her music and image and for retaining a standard of anonymity within the recording industry; she is recognized as
an influence among numerous music artists.
1958�1981: Early life and beginnings
Madonna was born in Bay City, Michigan at 7:05 AM on August 16, 1958 to Madonna Louise (n�e Fortin), who was of French Canadian descent, and Silvio Ciccone, who was a first-generation Italian American Chrysler/General Motors design engineer,
originating from Pacentro, Abruzzo, Italy. Madonna is the third of six children; her siblings are Martin, Anthony, Paula, Christopher, and Melanie.
Madonna was raised in the Detroit suburbs of Pontiac and Avon Township (now Rochester Hills). Her mother died of breast cancer at age 30 on December 1, 1963. Then her father married the family's housekeeper, Joan Gustafson, and they had
two children; Jennifer and Mario Ciccone. Madonna commented on her father's second marriage: "I didn't accept my stepmother when I was growing up ... retrospect, I think I was really hard on her." She attended St. Frederick's and
St. Andrew's Elementary Schools (the latter is now known as Holy Family Regional School), and after that West Middle School. There she became known for her high GPA - and for her "unusual" behavior, particularly a kind of an underwear
fetish: Madonna performed cartwheels and handstands in the hallways between classes, dangled by her knees from the monkey bars during recess, and thought nothing of tugging her skirt up over her desk during class so that all the boys could
see her briefs.
Later, she went to Rochester Adams High School, becoming a straight-A student and a member of the cheerleading squad. Madonna received a dance scholarship to the University of Michigan after graduating from high school. She wanted to
take ballet lessons and convinced her father to allow her to partake the classes. Her ballet teacher persuaded her to pursue a career in dance, so she left the college at the end of 1977 and relocated to New York City. Madonna had little money
at that time and hence lived in squalor, working as a waitress in Dunkin' Donuts and with modern dance troupes. Of her move to New York, Madonna said, "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." While performing as a dancer for the French disco artist Patrick Hernandez on his 1979 world tour, Madonna became romantically involved with the musician
Dan Gilroy, with whom she later formed her first rock band, the Breakfast Club, in New York. She sang and played drums and guitar for the band. However, she departed from them and formed another band called Emmy in 1980, with drummer and former
boyfriend Stephen Bray. She and Bray wrote and produced dance songs that brought her to local attention in the New York dance clubs. DJ and record producer Mark Kamins was impressed by her demo recordings, so he brought her to the attention
of Sire Records founder Seymour Stein.
1982�1985: Madonna, Like a Virgin and marriage to Sean Penn
Madonna and her boyfriend John "Jellybean" Benitez during the early days of recording Madonna's debut album.Madonna signed a singles deal with Sire Records, a label belonging to Warner Bros. Records. Her first release was "Everybody"
on April 24, 1982. Her debut album, Madonna was primarily produced by Reggie Lucas. At the same time, she became involved with artist Jean-Michel Basquiat, living with him for a time in his loft, and visiting Los Angeles over December 82-January
83. She left the artist soon after, over his drug use and late hours, and took up with Musician John "Jellybean" Benitez, while developing the album.
Slowly Madonna's look and manner of dress, performances and music videos, became influential among young girls and women. Largely created by stylist and jewelry designer Maripol, Madonna's style of dress; defined by lace tops, skirts
over capri pants, fishnet stockings, jewelry bearing the Christian cross, multiple bracelets, and bleached hair, became a female fashion trend in the 1980s. Her follow up album, Like a Virgin (1984), became her first number one album on the
Billboard 200. Its commercial performance was buoyed by the success of its title track, "Like a Virgin," which peaked at number one on the Billboard Hot 100 for six weeks. The album sold approximately twelve million copies worldwide,
eight of them in the United States alone. She performed the song at the first MTV Video Music Awards, wearing her then-trademark "Boy Toy" belt. The performance is considered as one of the iconic moments in the history of MTV, as
is the album Like a Virgin which, the National Association of Recording Merchandisers and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame listed as one of the Definitive 200 Albums of All Time.
The next year, Madonna entered mainstream films beginning with a brief appearance as a club singer in the film Vision Quest. Its soundtrack contained her second US number-one single "Crazy for You". She also appeared in the
comedy Desperately Seeking Susan, a film which introduced the song "Into the Groove," her first number-one single in the United Kingdom. Although not the lead actress for the film, her profile was such that the movie widely became
seen (and marketed) as a Madonna vehicle. The film received a nomination for a C�sar Award for Best Foreign Film, and The New York Times film critic Vincent Canby named the film as one of the 10 best films of 1985., with the lead Rosanna Arquette
receiving a supporting actress BAFTA for her role. While filming the music video for "Material Girl" Madonna started dating actor Sean Penn and married him on her twenty-seventh birthday that year.
Madonna embarked on her first concert tour in North America titled The Virgin Tour, with the Beastie Boys as opening acts. In July 1985, Penthouse and Playboy magazines published a number of nude photos of Madonna taken in New York in
1978. Madonna posed for the photographs as she was in need of money. But because she had signed the appropriate release forms, she could not take legal action to block them. The publication caused media uproar. However, she remained defiant
and unapologetic upon publication of the photos for which she was paid as little as $25 a session. The photographs were ultimately sold for up to $100,000. She referenced this incident at the outdoor Live Aid charity concert. She stated that
she would not take her jacket off because "they might hold it against me ten years from now."
1986�1991: True Blue, Like a Prayer and the Blond Ambition
Madonna in the AIDS benefit project during the "Blond Ambition World Tour" - September 12, 1990.Madonna released her third album, True Blue, in 1986, prompting Rolling Stone to comment that "it sounds as if it comes from
the heart." The album included the ballad "Live to Tell", which she wrote for the film At Close Range, starring her then-husband Sean Penn. True Blue produced five top five singles on the Billboard charts namely, "Live
to Tell", "Papa Don't Preach", "Open Your Heart", "True Blue" and "La Isla Bonita". In the same year, Madonna starred in the film Shanghai Surprise (which was panned by critics) and made her theatrical
debut in a production of David Rabe's Goose and Tom-Tom, both co-starring Sean Penn. In 1987, Madonna starred in Who's That Girl, and contributed four songs to its soundtrack; including the title track and the United States number-two single,
"Causing a Commotion". The same year, she embarked on the Who's That Girl World Tour. The tour was complimented for Madonna's innovative dresses. Later that year, she released a remix album of past hits, You Can Dance. In 1988, city
officials in the town of Pacentro began to construct a 13-foot (4 m) statue of Madonna in a bustier. The statue commemorated the fact that her ancestors had lived in Pacentro. Madonna's marriage to Sean Penn also ended. After filing and withdrawing
divorce papers in December 1987, they separated on New Year's Eve 1988 and divorced in January 1989. Of her marriage to Penn, Madonna said, "I was completely obsessed with my career and not ready to be generous in any shape or form."
By early 1989, Madonna had signed an endorsement deal with soft drink manufacturer Pepsi. She debuted her new song, "Like a Prayer" in a Pepsi commercial and also made a music video for it. The video featured many Catholic symbols
such as stigmata and burning crosses. It suggested an interracial relationship between Madonna's character and a black priest, hence it was condemned by the Vatican. Since the commercial and music video were nearly identical, Pepsi was unable
to convince the public that their commercial had was not inappropriate. They revoked the commercial and cancelled their sponsorship contract with Madonna. However, she was allowed to retain her fee for the contract. Madonna's fourth studio
album, Like a Prayer was released the same year. It was co-written and co-produced by Patrick Leonard and Stephen Bray. Rolling Stone hailed it as "...as close to art as pop music gets". Like a Prayer peaked at number one on the
Billboard 200 album chart and sold seven million copies worldwide, with four million copies sold in the United States alone. The album produced three top five singles namely the title track (her seventh number-one single on the Hot 100), "Express
Yourself" and "Cherish".
The next year, Madonna starred as "Breathless" Mahoney in the film adaptation of the comic book series Dick Tracy. The movie starred Warren Beatty in the title role. To accompany the release of the film in, she issued the album
I'm Breathless, which included songs inspired by the film's 1930s setting. It also featured her eighth US number-one single, "Vogue", and "Sooner or Later", a song that earned Stephen Sondheim an Academy Award for Best
Original Song in 1991. While shooting for the film, Madonna began a relationship with Beatty. He appeared on the album-cover of I'm Breathless and in her documentary Truth or Dare. Their relationship ended in the fall of 1990. Madonna
began her Blond Ambition World Tour in April 1990. Featuring religious and sexual themes, the tour drew controversy for her performance of "Like a Virgin" during which two male dancers caressed her body before she simulated masturbation.
The Pope again encouraged Catholics not to attend. A private association of Catholics, called Famiglia Domani, also boycotted the tour for featuring eroticism. In response, Madonna said, "I am Italian American and proud of it" and
that the Church "completely frowns on sex ... except for procreation."
The Immaculate Collection, Madonna's first greatest hits compilation album, was released in November 1990. It included two new songs called "Justify My Love" and "Rescue Me". "Rescue Me" became the highest-debuting
single by a female artist in Billboard chart history at that time, entering at number fifteen and peaking at number nine. "Justify My Love" became a Madonna's ninth US number-one single. Its music video featured scenes of sadomasochism,
bondage, same-sex kissing and brief nudity. It was deemed too sexually explicit for MTV and was banned from the station. At the end of the year, Madonna decided to leave the controversial Jennifer Lynch film Boxing Helena. From late 1990 to
early 1991, Madonna dated Tony Ward, a model and porn star who starred in her music videos for "Cherish" and "Justify My Love". She also had an eight-month relationship with rapper Vanilla Ice. Her first documentary film,
Truth or Dare (known as In Bed with Madonna outside North America) was released in mid-1991. The documentary chronicled her Blond Ambition World Tour, as well giving glimpses of her personal life. The following year, she appeared in the baseball
film A League of Their Own in the role of Italian-American Mae Mordabito. She recorded the film's theme song, "This Used to Be My Playground" which became her tenth Billboard Hot 100 number-one hit.
1992�1996: Maverick, release of Sex, Erotica, Bedtime Stories
Madonna at the Madrid premiere of Evita - November 20, 1996.In 1992, Madonna founded her own entertainment company, Maverick, consisting of a record company (Maverick Records), a film production company (Maverick Films), and also music
publishing, television, merchandising and book-publishing divisions. The deal was a joint venture with Time Warner as part of $60 million worth of recordings and businesses. The deal gave her a twenty percent royalty, equal at the time to
Michael Jackson's. The first release from the venture was Madonna's first publication Sex, a book consisting of sexually provocative and explicit images photographed by Steven Meisel. It caused strong reactions from the media and the general
public, but nevertheless sold 1,500,000 copies, at $50 each, in a matter of days. At the same time she released her fifth studio album Erotica. It peaked at number two in the United States. Its title track peaked at number three on the Billboard
Hot 100. Erotica also produced five further singles namely "Deeper and Deeper," "Bad Girl," "Fever," "Rain" and "Bye Bye Baby."
Her provocative imagery continued with the erotic thrillers Body of Evidence and Dangerous Game. The first film contained scenes of S&M and bondage hence was poorly received by critics. Dangerous Game was released straight-to-video
in North America but received some good reviews for Madonna's performance. The New York Times described that "She submits impressively to the emotions raging furiously around her." Madonna embarked on The Girlie Show World Tour at
the end of 1993. It featured her dressed as a whip-cracking dominatrix, surrounded by topless dancers. The show faced negative reaction in Puerto Rico when she rubbed its flag between her legs on stage. Orthodox Jews protested against her
first ever show in Israel. That year, she also appeared on the Late Show with David Letterman, using four-letter words and asking Letterman to smell her underwear. The release of Truth or Dare, Sex book, Erotica, Body of Evidence and the appearance
on Letterman - all of them made critics question Madonna as a sexual renegade. She faced strong negative publicity with critics and fans commenting that "she had gone too far" and that her career was to be over.
Madonna tried to tone down this provocative image by releasing the single "I'll Remember", which she recorded for Alek Keshishian's film With Honors. She made a tame appearance with Letterman at an awards show, as well as appearing
on the Jay Leno show. However, the public still did not accept her. It was then that she realized her music career needed some dramatic changes in order to sustain herself in the long run. With her sixth studio album Bedtime Stories Madonna
tried to soften her image and reconnect with the general public once more. The album produced four singles� "Secret", "Take a Bow" which spent seven weeks at number one on the Billboard Hot 100, "Bedtime Story"
and "Human Nature". At the same time she became romantically involved with fitness trainer Carlos Leon. Continuing to tone down her image, Madonna released Something to Remember, a collection of her ballads, in May 1995. It featured
her cover of the Marvin Gaye song "I Want You" and the top ten hit song "You'll See". The following year saw the release of Madonna�s most critically successful film, Evita. She portrayed the main part of Eva Per�n, a role
first played by Elaine Paige in the West End. The soundtrack album contained three of her singles including "You Must Love Me", a song that earned Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice the Academy Award for Best Original Song in 1997
and "Don't Cry For Me Argentina". Madonna won a Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a Musical or Comedy for the role. On October 14, 1996, Madonna gave birth to her and Carlos Leon's daughter, Lourdes Maria Ciccone Leon.
1997�2002: Ray of Light, Music, second marriage and Drowned
Madonna with her then husband Guy Ritchie at the premiere of his film Revolver - September 11, 2005.After Lourdes' birth Madonna became involved in Eastern mysticism and Kabbalah. Her seventh studio album Ray of Light reflected this change
in her perception and image. The album debuted at number two in the United States. Allmusic called it her "most adventurous record." The album produced two US top five singles: "Frozen", which reached number two and "Ray
of Light", which reached five. It also won three Grammy Awards the same year. The title track "Ray of Light" won a Grammy for "Best Short Form Music Video", Best Video at the 1998 MTV Video Music Awards and was used
by Microsoft in its advertising campaign to introduce Windows XP. The first single "Frozen" was adjudicated to be a plagiarism of Belgian songwriter Salvatore Acquaviva's 1993 song "Ma Vie Fout L'camp", and hence the album
was banned in Belgium. Ray of Light has been ranked number 363 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time. Beside the album, Madonna was signed to play a violin teacher in the film Music of the Heart but left the project, citing "creative
differences" with director Wes Craven. Madonna followed the success of Ray of Light with the single "Beautiful Stranger", recorded for the 1999 film Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me's soundtrack. It reached number nineteen
on the Billboard Hot 100.
Madonna starred in the movie The Next Best Thing in 2000. She contributed two songs to the film's soundtrack, "Time Stood Still" and the international hit "American Pie", a cover version of the 1970s Don McLean single.Madonna's
eighth studio album, Music, was released in 2000 and debuted at number one on the Billboard 200. It produced three singles; "Music", which became Madonna's twelfth number one US single as well as "Don't Tell Me" and "What
It Feels Like for a Girl". The latter's music video depicted Madonna committing murders and accidents with cars and was banned by MTV and VH1 from airing. The same year Madonna became involved in a relationship with Guy Ritchie, whom
she had met in 1999 through mutual friends Sting and his wife, Trudie Styler. On August 11, 2000, she gave birth to their son, Rocco. Later that year, Madonna and Ritchie married in Scotland.
Her fifth concert tour titled the Drowned World Tour, her first since 1993, started in May 2001. The tour visited cities in North America and Europe. It became one of the highest grossing concert tours of the year and grossed $75 million
from 47 sold-out shows. She also released her second greatest hits collection titled GHV2 to coincide with the home video release of the tour. The album debuted at number seven on the Billboard 200. Madonna also starred in the film Swept
Away directed by her husband Guy Ritchie. It was released in 2002. The film was a commercial and critical failure and released straight-to-video in the United Kingdom. Later that year, she released the title song "Die Another Day"
to the twentieth James Bond film, in which she had a cameo role. The song reached number eight on the Billboard Hot 100 and was nominated both for a Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song and a Golden Raspberry for Worst Song.
2003�2006: American Life, Confessions on a Dance Floor and
Madonna performing at the Live 8 benefit concert - July 2, 2005.Madonna collaborated with fashion photographer Steven Klein in 2003 on an exhibition installation named X-STaTIC Pro=CeSS. It included photography from a photoshoot in W
Magazine and seven video segments. The installation ran from March to May, in New York's Deitch Projects gallery. It then traveled the world in an edited form. Madonna released her ninth studio album called American Life. It was themed on
the American society and received mixed reviews. The title song peaked at number thirty-seven on the Billboard Hot 100. Having sold four million copies, American Life became the lowest selling album of her career. Later that year, Madonna
performed the song "Hollywood" with Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera and Missy Elliott at the 2003 MTV Video Music Awards. Madonna kissed Spears and Aguilera during the performance, resulting in a tabloid frenzy. That fall, Madonna
provided guest vocals on Spears' single "Me Against the Music". During the Christmas season of 2003, Madonna released Remixed & Revisited, a remix EP that included rock versions of songs from American Life, and "Your Honesty",
a previously unreleased track from the Bedtime Stories recording sessions. Madonna also signed a contract with Callaway Arts & Entertainment for five books, and published the first one titled The English Roses. The story was about four
English schoolgirls and their envy and jealousy of each other. After its release, The English Roses peaked at the top of New York Times Best Seller list.
The next year in March, Madonna and Maverick sued Warner Music Group and its former parent company, Time Warner, claiming that mismanagement of resources and poor bookkeeping had cost the company millions of dollars. In return, Warner
filed a countersuit, alleging that Maverick had lost tens of millions of dollars on its own. The dispute was resolved when the Maverick shares owned by Madonna and Ronnie Dashev were purchased. The company became a wholly owned subsidiary
of Warner Music but Madonna was still signed to Warner under a separate recording contract. Later that year, Madonna embarked on the Re-Invention World Tour in the United States, Canada, and Europe. It became the highest-grossing tour of 2004,
earning $125 million. She made a documentary about the tour named I'm Going to Tell You a Secret. That same year, Rolling Stone ranked her number thirty-six on their list of the "100 Greatest Artists of All Time". During the 2004
presidential election, Madonna endorsed Wesley Clark's Democratic nomination.
She participated in the televised concert "Tsunami Aid" and performed a cover version of the John Lennon song "Imagine". The concert, which took place on January 2005, raised money for the tsunami victims in Asia.
The same year, Madonna performed at the Live 8 benefit concert in London in July, supporting the aims of Britain's Make Poverty History campaign and the Global Call for Action Against Poverty. Her tenth studio album, Confessions on a Dance
Floor was released in November and has sold more than eight million copies. Following the mixed reviews of her previous studio album, Confessions received positive reviews with critics claiming it as a return to commercial prominence for her.
However, Israeli rabbis condemned the song "Isaac" from the album because they believed it was a tribute to Rabbi Isaac Luria and claimed that Jewish law forbid commercializing a rabbi's name. Madonna claimed that she had named it
after an Israeli singer and said, "The album isn't even out, so how could Jewish scholars in Israel know what my song is about?" The first single from the album, "Hung Up" went on to reach number-one in a record breaking
forty-five countries. "Sorry", the second single became Madonna's twelfth number one in the United Kingdom.
By mid-2006, fashion clothing line H&M had signed Madonna to become their worldwide model. The next year, the clothing line M by Madonna was launched internationally. Madonna's Confessions Tour began in May 2006. It had a global audience
of 1.2 million people and, with reported gross sales of $260.1 million. The use of religious symbols such as the crucifix and Crown of Thorns in the performance of "Live to Tell" caused the Russian Orthodox Church and the Federation
of Jewish Communities of Russia to urge all their members to boycott her concert. The Vatican as well as bishops from D�sseldorf protested against the concert. Madonna responded that, "My performance is neither anti-Christian, sacrilegious
or blasphemous. Rather, it is my plea to the audience to encourage mankind to help one another and to see the world as a unified whole."
While on the tour, Madonna traveled to Malawi to help and fund an orphanage as part of the Raising Malawi initiative. On October 10, 2006, she filed adoption papers for a boy named David Banda Mwale from the orphanage. He was renamed
David Banda Mwale Ciccone Ritchie. The adoption raised strong public reaction because Malawian law requires would-be parents to reside in Malawi for one year before adopting. The effort was highly publicized and culminated in legal disputes.
Madonna refuted the allegations on The Oprah Winfrey Show. She said that there are no written adoption laws in Malawi that regulate foreign adoption and that Banda had been suffering from pneumonia after surviving malaria and tuberculosis
when she met him. Singer and humanitarian activist, Bono, defended her by saying, "Madonna should be applauded for helping to take a child out of the worst poverty imaginable." Some said that Banda's biological father Yohane did
not understand what adoption meant and had assumed that the arrangement was fostering. He said, "These so-called human rights activists are harassing me every day, threatening me that I am not aware of what I am doing." He also said,
"They want me to support their court case, a thing I cannot do for I know what I agreed with Madonna and her husband." The adoption was finalized on May 28, 2008.
2007�present: Live Nation, Hard Candy and the Sticky & Sweet Tour
Madonna and director Nathan Rissman at the premiere of I Am Because We Are in 2008 Tribeca Film Festival.In May 2007, Madonna released the download-only song "Hey You", in anticipation of the Live Earth series of concerts. The
song was made available for free for its first week. She also performed it at the London Live Earth concert in July 2007. Madonna announced her departure from Warner Bros. Records and a new $120 million, ten year contract with Live Nation
in October. She became the founding recording artist for the new music division, Live Nation Artists. Same year, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame announced Madonna as one of the five inductees of 2008. The ceremony took place on March 10, 2008.
Madonna produced and wrote I Am Because We Are, a documentary on the problems faced by Malawians. The documentary was directed by her former gardener Nathan Rissman. The Guardian praised I Am Because We Are, saying that she "came, saw
and conquered the world's biggest film festival." She also directed her first film titled Filth and Wisdom. It received mixed reviews from the British press. The Times said she had "done herself proud" while The Daily Telegraph
described the film as "not an entirely unpromising first effort Madonna would do well to hang on to her day job."
Madonna released her eleventh studio album, Hard Candy, in April 2008. It was lauded by Rolling Stone as an "impressive taste of her upcoming tour." The album debuted at number one on the UK Albums Chart, and the Billboard 200,
with over 280,000 copies sold. The album received mostly positive reviews worldwide, though some critics panned it as "an attempt to harness the urban market". Its lead single "4 Minutes" reached number three on the Billboard
Hot 100. The single scored Madonna her thirty-seventh Billboard Hot 100 top ten hit, thus surpassing Elvis Presley as the artist with the most top-ten hits. In the United Kingdom, she retained her record for the most number one singles for
a female artist, this being her thirteenth. To further promote the album, Madonna embarked on the Sticky & Sweet Tour, which was her first major venture with Live Nation. It became the highest-grossing tour ever by a solo artist with gross
of $US280 million, surpassing the title previous held by her Confessions Tour. The tour was extended to the next year, adding new European dates and places where Madonna did not visit previously.
Life with My Sister Madonna, a controversial book by Madonna's brother, Christopher Ciccone, was released on July. The book debuted at number two on the New York Times Best Seller List. It was not authorized by Madonna and led to a rift
between them. Madonna filed for divorce from husband Guy Ritchie in October 2008. After being granted a preliminary decree of divorce, the separation became final in December. On March 2, 2009, Madonna was honored with the Japan Gold International
Artist of the Year award at the Recording Industry Association of Japan Gold Disc Awards for her album Hard Candy. Madonna decided to adopt again from Malawi. The country's High Court initially approved the adoption of Chifundo "Mercy"
James. However the adoption was rejected with court registrar Ken Manda stating the reason being was that Madonna was not a resident of Malawi. This ruling was overturned by the country's highest court. On June 12, 2009, the Supreme Court
of Malawi granted Madonna the rights to adopt Mercy James.
Madonna started working on Celebration, her third greatest hits, and closing album with Warner Bros. Records. It contained the new song "Celebration" and all her hit songs from her career. In June, Forbes Magazine named her
as the third most powerful celebrity of the year. Madonna appeared at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards on September 13, 2009, to pay tribute to Michael Jackson with a speech.