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Rewind: Madonna and Nick Kamen "Each Time You Break My Heart" (1986)


Madonna likes to keep her finger on the pulse. The diva has always had a fine sense of what is in vogue and what is not. No wonder she teamed with hot model/singer Nick Kamen after he shot to fame in 1986. Stripping down to his white boxers, Kamen gained worldwide notoriety in 1985 when he appeared in the famous (and very gay) laundrette commercial for Levi's.

Madonna picked up on the hype surrounding the advertisment and admitted in a BBC radio interview in 1986 that she was inspired by Kamen's "charisma" and "beautiful voice." She volunteered to write and produce the song "Each Time You Break My Heart" for Kamen. Madonna also makes a cameo in the song, singing background vocals in the bridge of the song towards the end.

The song's production is identical to the sound Madonna put out at the time of "True Blue" in 1986 with its (computerized) rhythm section and punchy synth bass. Madonna's involvement is obvious when you compare the instrumentation of "Open Your Heart" to "Each Time You Break My Heart."

Check out the original video for the song. Also stream the very entertaining, 37 minute BBC radio interview with Madonna that starts out with the singer describing how she got involved with Kamen. After that she talks about her upbringing, the importance of discipiline and her marriage to Sean Penn. If you interested to learn more about Nick Kamen, you can visit his web site with photos, audio clips and more.

Listen to Madonna's BBC Radio One interview [real]
Stream Nick Kamen "Each Time..." (Pettibone Mix) [wma]

Watch Nick Kamen "Each Time..." [wmv]
Watch Nick Kamen's Levis' 501 commercial (1985) [qt]

October 21, 2005 in Rewind | Permalink


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I have this song on various Madonna mixes. I hope one day she will release her own version of it where she has the lead vocals. And yes, it really is sort of THE Madonna sound isn't it? bass, melody, high end sounds.

Posted by: xolondon at Oct 21, 2005 6:04:42 AM

If I'm not mistaken, Madonna's rhythm sections are not "computerized" but played live on digital synths. This is the "Madonna sound" so to speak.

Posted by: Matt Lavallee at Oct 21, 2005 7:51:51 AM

nick kamen is a hottie. thanks for writing more about him.

Posted by: sweetdream at Oct 21, 2005 8:03:02 AM

madonna also re-used the same ending chorus/lyrics "don't break my heart, you broke my heart...etc.." in her song "waiting" from the Erotica album.

Posted by: jonny at Oct 23, 2005 11:30:00 AM

I still listen to the 12" remix of this song from time to time. An excellent song, all around. It used to pack my dancefloor back in the day!

Posted by: Alan at Oct 26, 2005 4:39:28 PM

The Madonna Interview for BBC is great. I enjoyed it. Thanks!

Posted by: UweB at Oct 28, 2005 5:54:05 PM

I think this guy Nick Kamen would have had a better and longer range career if he hadn't allowed Madonna to step in, he had a great look, but would not be taken seriously with a Madonna sound and how do you break out of that once its done? So nows he's a one time hit? Where is he now...No longevity when you have Madonna as your writer and typical sound..He should have poured his own heart out and his moves would have followed, and hits would have soared! He's hot and fun to watch, but needs real talent behind him, not bubblegum Madonna...Oh well........

Posted by: Jeri at Oct 7, 2006 8:05:57 PM