The Levi’s model, actor and singer’s biggest hit single was co-written by the queen of pop.

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image captionMadonna gave Nick Kamen a song that was left over from her third album True Blue
Madonna has paid tribute to Nick Kamen, the model, actor and singer whose biggest hit was co-written by the star.
Kamen caught the eye in a 1985 Levi’s jeans advert – baring his chest in a launderette – and the queen of pop invited him in on a track the following year. He died this week aged 59.
“Heartbreaking to know you are gone,” the superstar posted online.
The pair had a top five hit with Each Time You Break My Heart, which featured Madonna on backing vocals.
“You were always such a kind, sweet human and you suffered too much,” she added.
“Hope you are happier wherever you are Nick Kamen.”
Kamen – real name Ivor Neville Kamen – rose to fame in the Levi’s commercial, which showed him stripping down to his boxer shorts in a launderette as several women looked on.
The advert, soundtracked by Marvin Gaye’s I Heard It Through The Grapevine, helped to boost the company’s denim sales and made him a sex symbol in the process.
It also caught the attention of Madonna, who told the BBC at the time she had been taken by Kamen’s “charisma” and “beautiful voice”.
She then contacted Kamen and asked him to record Each Time You Break My Heart – a synth-pop track left over from her third album True Blue.
Speaking to BBC Breakfast on Thursday, fashion designer Wayne Hemingway said the memorable advert was a game-changing cultural moment.
“This was an advert that came totally out of club culture, and back then club culture was totally underground,” he said. “We didn’t have the internet we didn’t have social media so things stayed underground and this brought a movement on to mainstream telly.”
Hemingway added that Kamen was, at the time, “one of the glamorous young men” on the London club circuit.
“They picked the right person, the right music,” he continued.
“They dressed everybody [in] what today we call vintage styling – it starts off with a vintage car and an old laundrette, and with the 50s-style haircuts.
“They got everything right, and on top of that they broke the rules because back then the idea of women ogling men in an advert rather than the horrible other way around – we’ve now moved on as a society, not fully.
“This broke all of the norms and it just stands the test of time, everything about it.”
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