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Lady Gaga as Jo Calderone: 'Britney Spears Is Hot'

Pop star refuses to break character backstage at VMAs

August 29, 2011 8:35 AM ET
lady gaga jo calderone vma
Lady Gaga as Jo Calderone at the 2011 MTV Video Music Awards
Steve Granitz/WireImage

At any awards show, Lady Gaga can be expected to appear in multiple outlandish outfits. But at last night's MTV Video Music Awards, the singer was fully committed to her drag performance as her greasy, lewd, male alter ego Jo Calderone. Gaga remained in character all night, even backstage, where she would only answer questions as Calderone.

So why did Calderone show up instead of Gaga? "She's really fucking pissed at me," the singer told Rolling Stone. "Gaga said 'Fuck you,' she said, 'If you really love me you'll go instead of me and get in that spotlight.' So I did."

Photos: The Best Moments of the 2011 MTV Video Music Awards

In addition to performing the new single "Yoü and I" at the start of the show, Gaga appeared as Calderone when she accepted a Moonman for her "Born This Way" video and presented the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard award to her idol Britney Spears.

Would Calderone ever hook up with Spears? "Maybe if she wants to," the pop star said. "She's fucking hot, Britney. Gaga's my girl, but Britney's fucking Britney Spears. Didn't you jerk off to Britney when you were a kid?"

Reporting by Steve Baltin

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2011 MTV Video Music Awards: Winners and Highlights
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Video: Lady Gaga Opens VMAs With 'Yoü and I'
Video: Adele Performs 'Someone Like You' on the VMAs
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• Photos: Highlights of the 2010 Video Music Awards

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Song Stories

“Bird on a Wire”

Leonard Cohen | 1969

While living on the Greek island of Hydra, Cohen was battling a lingering depression when his girlfriend handed him a guitar and suggested he play something. After spotting a bird on a telephone wire, Cohen wrote this prayer-like song of guilt. First recorded by Judy Collins, it would be performed numerous times by artists incuding Johnny Cash, Joe Cocker and Rita Coolidge. "I'm always knocked out when I hear my songs covered or used in some situation," Cohen told Rolling Stone. "I've never gotten over the fact that people out there like my music."

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