Madonna‘s Woman of the Year acceptance speech at Billboard’s Women in Music event aired Monday. I should have paid attention a couple of days ago but I just watched it this morning. Hats off to the ballsy scald and the memories that sear. This is the kind of speech that Warren Beatty (Madonna’s lover during the Dick Tracy, Truth or Dare period) could never give — it’s the kind of buckshot that could only be fired by a fearless artist-egotist. It felt to me like a kind of rebirth, which is what artists have to do on a regular basis. They have to shed their skins or die, and recall their pain without pity. Favorite line: “There is no real safety except self-belief.”