Music News: Madonna slams planned biopic


Madonna performs at the Xcel Energy Center.
Madonna performs at the Xcel Energy Center in 2015. (Nate Ryan/MPR)

Some biopics are authorized and some are unauthorized, and a planned movie about Madonna’s early years in the music business is clearly going to be unauthorized.

"Nobody knows what I know and what I have seen," wrote Madonna in an Instagram post understood to be about the planned film Blond Ambition. "Only I can tell my story. Anyone else who tries is a charlatan and a fool."

According to the New York Times, "the film follows Madonna's early efforts to break into the music industry, several years after she had arrived in Manhattan from Michigan in the late '70s as an aspiring dancer. By the early '80s, after she'd sung in several rock bands, she struggled to get her first album produced."

A script for the film has been purchased by Universal, but filming hasn't started yet.

Sony and Dr. Luke reportedly parting ways

According to the Hollywood Reporter, superproducer Dr. Luke and Sony Music are "negotiating a split," after which Dr. Luke would no longer be CEO of Sony's Kemosabe Records. That's the label Kesha is signed to. The three-way relationship among Kesha, Dr. Luke, and Sony has been at the center of a two-and-a-half-year legal battle in which Kesha is trying to extricate herself from Dr. Luke, who she accuses of sexual assault and other offenses. In response, Dr. Luke has sued Kesha for defamation.

A split between Dr. Luke and Sony might on the surface seem like a win for Kesha, but the reality is more complicated. In past court filings, Kesha's lawyers have argued that if Dr. Luke and Sony were to part ways, that might make it even more difficult for Kesha to get out of her contract, which ties her to Dr. Luke personally, since they'd no longer have the label as a moderator.

Lucinda Williams plans special show for First Ave

Lucinda Williams’s upcoming Friday show at First Avenue will include a special treat for longtime fans: it will be the only show on her tour where the revered singer-songwriter will play her entire album Sweet Old World from front to back. Williams has an important history with that album and Minnesota: at a Minneapolis listening party for the 1992 release of that album, she met Tom Overby. A Minnesota native and a former Best Buy executive, Overby is now Williams's husband and manager. (Star Tribune)

Beyoncé launches scholarship fund

Beyoncé has announced a fund to provide scholarships to selected students at four colleges: two historically black colleges (Howard and Spelman), a music school (Berklee) and a design school (Parsons). According to the star's website, the scholarships will "encourage and support young women who are unafraid to think outside the box and are bold, creative, conscious and confident." (NPR)

Don't bully orcas

Bully frontwoman Alicia Bognanno appears in a new public service announcement criticizing the "inhumane" practices at SeaWorld. "I would like anyone who supports Bully to fight against SeaWorld," says Bognanno in the PSA. (Stereogum)

Chip bag mixtape

The Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 soundtrack will be released in an unusual format, thanks to a promotional partnership with Doritos. Starting Friday, fans will be able to go to Amazon and order Doritos bags that have digital players embedded: you can plug a set of headphones into your chip bag and listen to a complete album of songs by artists including Fleetwood Mac ("The Chain"), George Harrison ("My Sweet Lord"), and Cheap Trick ("Surrender"). Yes, the chip bags will be rechargeable. (Billboard)

Glensheen milks doughnut nostalgia

The program for this year's Homegrown Music Festival features an ad for the beloved Duluth shop House of Donuts. Hang on, though: that doughnut shop closed years ago. It turns out that the ad was placed by Glensheen; when you go to the website provided,, it redirects to the website for the historic mansion. "We didn't want to be just another ad in the guide," Glensheen's marketing manager Jane Pederson told the Duluth News Tribune.

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