“I was the starting-out artist begging for help and I would go to people who ran labels or influential DJs saying: ‘Can you help me out? Can you listen to this song? Can you hook me up?’ Can you sign me to your record label?’ and a lot of people said: ‘Yeah, if you’ll do this,’ and usually it was a sexual favor.

I couldn’t bring myself to do it because I knew I couldn’t look myself in the mirror if I did, so I just kept going on as I had, being a starving artist and waiting for my ship to come in and, ironically, I was signed by a gay man who didn’t want anything to do with me in that way and he just really appreciated my music.”Madonna speaking to NME about how Seymour Stein, a gay record exec, helped her break into the music industry.


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