Sunday, 13 February 2011

Don't be a drag, enjoy the song

    For those of you who aren't hermits, Lady GaGa's new single will already be embedded into your heads, circling on repeat. Whether it's in the gym, in the bath or in an exam, GaGa has managed to create a hook that not only leaves you gasping for air but wanting to suffocate.
    Having become some sort of a cultural phenomenon within two years, with one and a half albums and an array of outrageous outfits, it would be safe to say that Gaga is under pressure to outdo her self both musically and visually. However, as opposed to hiding in the closet in fear of failure, Lady GaGa has leaped outside, locked it and lost the key, repeatedly informing the world of release dates, lyrics and artwork alike, not to mention claims that 'Born This Way' is the greatest thing  she has ever written. 
   The result has been an Internet hype, which would make you think that a cure for cancer had been discovered, particularly when one considers celebrity blogger Perez Hilton's statement that the song 'will save lives'. Thus, you can understand the excitement that I and other monsters across the globe felt, when GaGa announced, via Twitter that the single would be released on Friday 11/02/11 as opposed to it's original release date, which was only increased by the release of her androgynous David Bowie inspired artwork.

 Which somehow manages to look empowering yet vulnerable at the same time and thus gives GaGa an honesty and sincerity that many critics doubted she possessed.

    However, when in fact the single did premiere on Friday, despite it's record breaking achievement of topping the iTunes chart in 21 of its 23 countries, fans were split with many calling it a disappointing imitation of Madonna's 'Express Yourself'...and it is influenced by 'Express Yourself', in as much as it is an uplifting upbeat pop song that encourages people to accept and enjoy who they are. But what is so outrageous about that?
      Fashion repeats itself all the time - the upcoming SS collections are heavily influenced by the seventies, and as opposed to knocking it down for taking influence from past fashions, we respect fashion for its beauty and enjoy the nostalgia of a more glamorous time. We still accept Marc Jacobs as the creative genius he is, despite the studio 54 fashion references in his collection for this SS.

So why can't we appreciate talented musicians who take inspiration from other works of art?
     The answer is we can, it's just as humans we are keen to criticise others but why bother. 'Born This Way' although equally as camp as 'Express Yourself' is an updated version, with a universal message that can unite people. It is an upbeat number to which anyone can relate to and have a good time. It may not 'save lives' but it is a remedy for those who suffer prejudice and middle finger up at those who cause it.
     Whilst 'Express Yourself' helped the ongoing emancipation of women, 'Born This Way' judging by its  immediate success will help to promote equality and acceptance in sexuality and race, through a simple yet powerful message:

No matter gay, straight or bi
Lesbian, transgendered life
I'm on the right track, baby
I was born to survive
No matter black, white or beige
Chola or orient made
I'm on the right track, baby
I was born to be brave

Undoubtedly this is a good thing.
     Thus in the words of 'Born This Way' 'Don't be a drag, just be a queen', listen to the song and i you do dislike it, don't dislike it because of its influences; similar music is bound to come as the result of similar artists with similar beliefs in similar genres. Don't de-construct the song unnecessarily but enjoy it and look forward to the  music video to follow, which like those of Madonna, shall be more than just a dance but a work of art.

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