It’s been 2 years since Lady Gaga has been on the pop scene with new music. In between her worldwide tour, her hip surgery, and side projects (art installations)– she’s been low on the radar, but last week, that changed. Her new album entitled ARTPOP was released on November 11– it included a wide array of songs, some inspired by hip-hop, some inspired by “rave techno”. She kicked off her album with a concert in Brooklyn entitled artRave– basically a rented out warehouse full of art installations created by the one and only Jeff Koons, and performed her new songs for her fans.
With the excitement surrounding a new album, Gaga has been promoting ARTPOP in many different ways. She created a new interactive application for smartphones, she released special edition CDs for sale, and she announced that she would be hosting Saturday Night Live on November 16.
She performed two songs, “Gypsy” and “Do What U Want”, one of her more popular singles with R. Kelly. However, the performance with R. Kelly got serious criticisms from the viewers.
In the performance, R Kelly and Lady Gaga groped, touched, and danced with each other sexually, and even simulated a “sex scene” on stage fully clothed. But what’s the big deal? We saw Miley Cyrus’ performance with Robin Thicke, we watched Madonna kiss Britney spears on stage at the VMAs.
The song “Do What U Want” has a double meaning. Gaga sings:
“You can’t have my heart and
You won’t use my mind but
Do what you want with my body”
“I walk alone
But then I trip over myself and I fall
I, I stand up, and then I’m okay
But then you print some shit that makes me wanna scream”
These lyrics imply her relationship to the media, and this song addresses the fact that the media has objectified her, and she’s essentially “giving” her body to the media so that her talent, soul, and well-being stays unscathed.
The performance may have been racy, but it conveyed the underlying message of the song, an ugly truth that many of the viewers are unaware of.