Madonna (entertainer)

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Madonna (entertainer) : biography

August 16, 1958 –

Madonna released her eleventh studio album, Hard Candy, in April 2008. Containing R&B and urban pop influences, the songs on Hard Candy were autobiographical in nature and saw Madonna collaborating with Justin Timberlake, Timbaland, Pharrell Williams and Nate "Danja" Hills. Rolling Stone complimented it as an "impressive taste of her upcoming tour."

The album debuted at number one in thirty seven countries and on the Billboard 200. It received generally 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 song was Madonna’s 37th Hot 100 top-ten hit—it pushed Madonna past Elvis Presley as the artist with the most top-ten hits. In the UK, she retained her record for the most number-one singles for a female artist; "4 Minutes" becoming her thirteenth. At the 23rd Japan Gold Disc Awards, Madonna received her fifth "Artist of the Year" trophy from Recording Industry Association of Japan, the most for any artist. To further promote the album, Madonna embarked on the Sticky & Sweet Tour; her first major venture with Live Nation. With a gross of $280 million, it became the highest-grossing tour by a solo artist, surpassing the previous record Madonna set with the Confessions Tour. It was extended to the next year, adding new European dates, and after it ended, the total gross was $408 million.

Life with My Sister Madonna, a book by Madonna’s brother Christopher Ciccone, debuted at number two on The New York Times bestseller list. The book caused some friction between Madonna and her brother, because of the unsolicited publication. Problems also arose between Madonna and Ritchie, with the media reporting that they were on the verge of separation. Ultimately, Madonna filed for divorce from Ritchie, citing irreconcilable differences, which was finalized in December 2008. She decided to adopt again from Malawi. The country’s High Court initially approved the adoption of Chifundo "Mercy" James; however, the application was rejected because Madonna was not a resident of the country. Madonna appealed, and on June 12, 2009, the Supreme Court of Malawi granted Madonna the right to adopt Mercy James. She also released Celebration, her third greatest-hits album and final release with Warner. It contained the new songs "Celebration" and "Revolver" along with 34 hits spanning her career. Celebration reached number one in the UK, tying her with Elvis Presley as the solo act with most number one albums in the British chart history. She appeared at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards on September 13, 2009, to speak in tribute to deceased pop star Michael Jackson.

Madonna ended the 2000s as the best-selling single artist of the decade in the U.S. and the most-played artist of the decade in the UK. Billboard also announced her as the third top-touring artist of the decade—behind only The Rolling Stones and U2—with a gross of over $801 million, 6.3 million attendance and 244 sell-outs of 248 shows.

2010–present: W.E., Super Bowl and MDNA

Madonna performed at the Hope for Haiti Now: A Global Benefit for Earthquake Relief concert in January 2010. In April she released her third live album, Sticky & Sweet Tour. It was her first release under Live Nation, but was distributed by Warner Bros. Madonna granted American TV show Glee the rights to her entire catalogue of music, and the producers planned an episode featuring Madonna songs exclusively. Titled "The Power of Madonna", the episode was approved by her, telling Us Weekly that she found it "brilliant on every level", praising the scripting and the message of equality. Glee: The Music, The Power of Madonna, an EP containing eight cover versions of Madonna songs featured in the episode, was released afterward and debuted at number one on the Billboard 200.