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Fan Memories: Madonna's Promo Show At HMV Oxford Street

With the sad news that the UK music retailer HMV has gone into administration madonnalicious looks back at a great highpoint for Madonna fans and HMV.

On Friday 09 May 2003 Madonna played a one-off free show at the Oxford Street store in London to promote her American Life album. Fans had to queue for a wristband on the Wednesday before the show, then come back and queue for the show on the Friday. As usual for Madonna lots of queuing was involved ;-)

Here is a picture madonnalicious took of the store front on the day of the show.

A totally chaotic BUT memorable event watching Madonna perform an intimate show while standing squashed in between all the racks of records and CDs! Everytime madonnalicious goes back into that store the memories come flooding back!

Below is an article from NME about the show - including a picture of the queue of fans waiting to get in and the setlist of the show.


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Most of the music stores are closed here in the U.S.--I grew up with Sam Goody and Tower, Wall to Wall--the only 1 I think is still open is FYE. Which is more of an used entertainment store. I love amazon and digital music, but agree we've lost something here.

Only Target and WalMart sell CDs now.


very sad times-i have also spent many an hour there buying import 12"s,picture discs,cassettes!!!special edition albums,confessions triple pink album-& many many more-concert dvds,films-even the well dodgy ones,lol!!!!so so sad- i totally agree-a download is just not the same as holding an album in your hand-reading every word in the credits,the dedications,the artwork-even the smell!! dont think where i live has ANY music stores anymore-the internet killed the radio star-not video :( :( xxx


This is bitter-sweet indeed. I was there too. A South African boy that had grown up with Madonna filling the soundtrack to my life and finally got the chance to see her LIVE, for FREE! Sounds cheesy but I have to say it, it changed my life. To hear her sing X-tatic Process from 20 feet away from me was cathartic.

It is very sad that HMV is closing; the stalwart of music stores in the UK. There's something special about hanging out in a store like that, looking through the thousands of discs for the ones you know you will love. Before you know it hours have passed and you're not sorry. it is convenient to buy music digitally, but at what cost?

We certainly are becoming less connected... something Madonna repeatedly asks us to do more of.


jon pert

how lovely to see this piece of madonna nostalgia and so coincidental as earlier today i remarked to my friend when i heard about HMV shutting that madonna had played a gig there in 2003.
very sad news i distinctly remember coming to HMV as a wide eyed 12 year old saving all my money and spending it on import 12" madonna singles!!


Oh, Clare! I remember this so well! What was amazing, of course, was that at first there was no one queuing! My then bf worked in Soho and went to check it out and we were shocked to be so near the front of the queue! It was around the time that Jo Wiley mentioned it on her radio show that the queue then went mental!

So sad about HMV - I spent many, many happy hours in the Bond Street store browsing and buying. it was also at the other Bond Street site (when it relocated) that some of the tickets for M's "Music" promo at The Brixton Academy were distributed. Yes, if HMV does go under, it really will be one of the days the music died.

And as for queuing for M, don't even get me started on queuing at the crack of Dawn in Soho to get tickets for Confessions on a GAY Dancefloor! What a weekend that was! :-)


I'm so sad that HMV and so many other music retailers worldwide are closing down! I LOVE browsing through record stores & purchasing something 'tangible'- I don't get that feeling of excitement buying music from I-Tunes. I live in Oz & until 6 years ago we had multilpe music retailers in every shopping centre, now only the huge shopping centres have ONE music store called 'JB HIFi'- and even this once great store has depleted music stock, it won't be long before there aren't any music retailers left and that's sad!

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