• Zachary Innes-Mulraine

MLVC A Bourgeois Rebel

A handmade collage of 1990's press clippings

Her Majesty Madonna turns 60 today and I want to share with you her impact on me as a child.

I'm in the car Driving to see my mum who has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, so me, Patty and Selma (you may think this is a harsh nickname but to this day my sisters still tell everyone that they found me in a bin at Gatwick so our family banter is beyond shady) we rally together to make sure she has the best life possible, which means every week I do a drive to Pompey (Portsmouth). The drive as always is a fucking nightmare but does give me a good couple of hours to listen to Madonna loud and on shuffle even in my mind Pog (our 12-year-old Mini pin) is quite happy to vogue about the car in full enjoyment. Then American life comes on and I was about to skip it (" do you think I'm satisfied”) when I got to thinking 'mate you are a seriously obsessed' "no shit" I hear my mates saying in my mind, I'd like to think that I was in the closet about it all.... well ding dong clatter queens I'm going to blow those thin ply doors wide open for the second time in my life.

1986 was the year I was 9 and about to be 10 and up to that point all I was interested in was He-man, Star Wars and to be honest She-Ra only because she was related to He-Man not because she was Cartoon Fierce knew how to rock a sword and twinkled like no bitch, Anyway sat in my parents car driving back from the weekly shop and this tune comes on the radio and suddenly like a sound torpedo heading towards its target which landed on point smashing my ear Hyman, my pop virginity had been slayed. I shouted "what's this who is it" Dad replied 'some American tart who knows how to dance' Mum immediately with a forced frown on her face (mum always tells us off for swearing but we all knew she secretly thought it was hilarious) 'TINY' (my dad’s nickname) and said to me 'well I will get it from the pocket money you saved' "and the new He-man action figure" I interrupted "NO" she shouted 'one or the other' this annoyed me but that song was amazing so in my head I decided to think about whilst at the same time my face was saying 'had could you be so cruel'. After a full week of listening to the radio when I could, catching the song once half way through and then being really pissed that when asking mum to phone the radio station immediately and ask them to put it on again as I missed it she just laughed at me LAUGHED why is this not a simple request I thought and stormed off to my room and secretly dry humped my superman blanket.

When pocket money day finally came I made the agonising choice blew a kiss goodbye to he-man and I asked 'can I have the song from the radio please' and the next day after school I got home and there it was a 7inch vinyl and on the cover was a woman making She-ra look like some Vegas dropout, her head tilted back with short black hair (on watching the music video later I realised that was a wig and she was blonde and my god the girl can dance) her name is Madonna and the song was 'open your heart'(click to see video) The baseline, the drums filled me with euphoria and I knew my addiction had started and thank god it's not going to give me crack face.

After a few years of saving patiently waiting for birthdays and Christmas (my sister got me the True Blue album on cassette and I wore the tape out but she had already made a copy for herself so we had spares) I finally got a job as a paperboy at twelve I had to lie about my age as you had to be 14 at the time, then got three more jobs as a paperboy doing two rounds in the morning, one in the afternoon and an extra one on Sundays this then financed my Madge addiction. Every Saturday I would go to Our Price or Venus Records in town and buy as many 7/12 vinyl’s I could find (12 inch singles where great cause you would more than likely get an extended mix) Then 1988 happened I had some money and what did she do took a year off and all that came out was a mix album with a cracking tune on called 'spotlight' pop genius I remember even the sales guy at Our Price said 'she is retiring and this is her last album' I was twelve at the time, what an evil man he was saying such blasphemous lies the shade of him, then wow the 90’s happened what a decade Vogue, Justify my love and frozen to name a few and what a complete difference each song is from the last a true testament to her talent and to my ears and I hope we have many more tunes to come happy birthday bitch xxx.

© Copyright 2019 Zachary Innes-Mulraine, Innes-Mulraine Photography, Brighton, UK