life stories don't always have happy endings.
I sincerely believe that Whitney would NOT have recorded I Will Always Love You, if I hadn't
suggested it to her, in a final conversation, one day, in 1979. Well,
as you know, she DID record it, and took home a Grammy Award for it,
too. See, this is another example of my musical good luck charm working
its magic, that time for Whitney. Can you imagine her career without
that one? It helped push her over the top. Incidentally, "I will always
love you," was what I said/thought, about Whitney, in the wake of that
above-mentioned passionate kiss, standing in the front, inside of Ben
Frank's restaurant. There were others standing around, at that moment.
I didn't know those words were going to be the title of one of her
Okay, now I can't close this discussion without bringing up a
conversation I once had with Whitney. One day she told me her name was
Houston, so I couldn't resist mentioning that one of the residential
streets in my neighborhood had that same name, Houston. She also asked
me what name she should use (same conversation). In hindsight, I
believe she was making a early allusion to the definite fact that she
wanted to marry me. After that time, it was out in the open, in clear,
unmasked language, about her wanting to marry her. I wished I could,
but I didn't think it would work out for me.
Whitney, I really cared about you. I felt guilty about tuning you down.
But now you can't read this, except from the beyond.
Although many reporters could feel uncomfortable with the following
information, it is the truth, nontheless. I state it here, as an
historical note about who I am, and something about my background:
I really am the
original Stephen Bray, of early association with Madonna. I made up the
name one day, while I was with Madonna, indoors someplace (on Sunset
Bl. in Hollywood). We were in some plain-looking room of a studio, back
in such primordial times. I wanted to keep my preexisting first name,
which was, and is, "Steven," but I felt like switching to the other
popular spelling, "Stephen." The last name I sort of pulled out of a
magical, nonexistent hat, so to speak, and that name happened to be
"Bray." It was short and simple, and it mysteriously came to my mind,
and the rest is history. Now, I want to explain about the other Stephen
Bray, the black guy, who got all the credit and fanfare. Madonna pulled
him into the picture, during a timeframe when I was feeling spooked
about everything, as if I could be in deep trouble just for trying to
pursue a career in music. Alas, I was so timid about my place in the
music industry, back in those days. Madonna's bringing in the other guy
to be me, instead, so to speak, was the so-called solution to my lack
of temerity in the music field. This was one of the mistakes I made in
music, and a big one at that. I don't know who would ever acknowledge
the truth about all this, but I know. The ones who would know, besides
myself and Madonna, are various young men, who also hung around with
Madonna and I. Some of them were in forward seats in the limosine, but
I was always the favored one, in the back, alone with Madonna. There
were various young men, whom I walked with on the street, who also were
in our crowd, whether or not they were ever honored with a limosine
ride with us. So, I'm telling you what it was, and is, now. I never
went to court to make it my real name. Madonna always had an artifice
for every circumstance, and this is a case in point.
This is not to say that the traditionally
acknowledged black Stephen Bray wasn't involved in real music, and so
on. He was.
However, I was the real guy who hung around with Madonna, and rode with
her in her limosine. Madonna was already doing the limosine scene in
the 1970's, before the public had heard of her. I know, because I was
there with her. I had a good time with her, and I even had sex with
her, once. But, as you can deduce from the above, there was room for
improvement, as far as what I got out of it. Some of her music DID come
from me. Some of the music other music people got famous for also came
from me, as examples: 1) Green Day, and 2) Maroon Five. And that's not
all. My music always made the big time.
If I recall correctly about this detail, I did meet the black Stephen
Bray, once, but that was all. He was never around any other time, when
I was with the Madonna crowd.
A recent headshot (above) - Summer of 2015
A Spontaneous Shot of Me (above) - c. March of
This website originated on July 11, 2005
This web page was last updated on August 27, 2015