We all know that an integral part of the Madonna magic has been the cavalcade of key producers who have fashioned the sound of her vision: Mark Kamins, who got her signed; Shep Pettibone, who got her into hot water; William Orbit, who first recorded her in the UK; Mirwais etc. But the most extraordinary has to be the most ordinary-named: Stuart Price. Don’t let a boring name put you off.
Like Mrs Madge, Monsieur Stu has had many incarnations specializing in the ersatz tack of electropop before it was remotely cool. He was behind the ’90s sensation Les Rythmes Digitales and check out the uber nod of credibility from Missy Elliot, whose opening lines to “Lose Control” are sampled from the track “Music Makes You Lose Control.” Also check out the two albums from Zoot Woman. (More about Stuart Price)
Price has also been known as super DJ Jacques Le Cont, prompting WOW’s own Jacques Peretti to write an article in protest (by this point that other famous Jacques, Jacques Cousteau, was already swimming with the fishes). A beautiful friendship blossomed. And now Madonna and Price are together like Marks & Spencer. And there are even shades of TomKat: S has apparently long been obsessed with the big M. One entire wall of his Ladbroke Grove flat was covered with the famous image from “Papa Don’t Preach.”
– Fenton Bailey
(Jacques Peretti goes round to Stuart Price’s flat after the jump)
I went round to his flat whilst he was still a super-trendy ’80s-fixated DJ, and he did indeed have a giant poster of Madonna (“Like a Virgin” period). We listened to an acetate of the Daft Punk album, which he was inordinately jealous of. He had an entourage of admirers in da house, well, da flat (mostly fellow knob-twiddling men in crumpled clothing), and regaled me with a curious story of the police helicopters and how they hover incessantly over his flat at night, beaming their big searchlight through his skylight (shades of the helicopter-fixation/ ’80s cocaine paranoia of Ray Liotta in GoodFellas here). One night, he said, he got naked and stood in the beam, showing the copter cops the full majesty of his tackle.
Along with his love of Madonna, he also espoused a love of the DX7 synthesizer and the Steve Miller Band’s “Abracadabra.” I can attest to the fact that he is indeed a very nice man and extremely funny and also, of course, very good looking and thus it is little surprise that Madonna is allegedly sampling more than just his ’80s drum patterns.
I did suspect as much from the last Madonnumentary, in which she takes as much stick from him as she will take from any human being, orders him about like a dog, and seems to generally dig this whole studenty ludicrous idea of going to his attic (where he has his studio) and getting creative over the mixing desk – keeping it real. Guy, meanwhile, seems to get the occasional email from her informing him that she’ll be home sometime in November.
– Jacques Peretti