Madonna Louise Ciccone is a popular singer, songwriter, and actress in the United States. Madonna, as she is commonly known, burst onto the music scene in the early 1980s with a style that had never been seen before. Her sexy, and scantily clad costumes and performances both delighted and aggravated the American public for years. She excelled at pushing the boundaries of what most Americans perceived as acceptable in her music videos and live performances. Madonna did not shy away from controversial subjects, either.
Madonna was born in Bay City, Michigan in 1958. She moved to New York City to pursue a career in dancing as a young woman. She began her music career with a couple of club bands in New York, but was soon noticed by music industry executives. In 1983, she released her first album titled simply, "Madonna." This was just the beginning for the superstar. She followed her initial success with several hit albums and singles such as Like a Virgin, and Into the Groove. She coupled her commercial success in music with successful performances in a series of movies such as Desperately Seeking Susan, and Evita. It seemed there was nothing Madonna could not do.
One of Madonna's defining characteristics is her ability to reinvent herself. Many artists find success in the very competitive, entertainment industry, but most are only successful for a short period of time, but not Madonna. She has sold more than 300 million records worldwide to date. She ranked second only to the Beatles on Billboard's list of Greatest Acts of the 20th Century.
Madonna's career has not been without controversy, though. She has been the subject of several lawsuits for her acts, but she survived, and thrived through it all. She is still one of the best female artists in the United States today.