Lady Gaga recently sat down for an epic, 73-minute-long interview for the Musicians@Google series. The video of the entire interview can be seen above, but we’ve excerpted some of the most interesting bits from the talk.
On her new single “Born This Way“: “When I put that song out, everybody was like, ‘The lyrics are so literal,’ and I’m like, ‘Yeah.’ When you get bullied, there’s kind of an emotional poetry you go through in high school. “Born This Way” is about saying, ‘This is who I am. This is who the fuck I am.’”
On the rock sound of her new album: “I would call it avant-garde techno rock. There’s a lot of rock influences on the album, but not in a ‘This is a rock music record’ kind of way. It actually is quite steadfast in that it is an exploration in electronic music and in techno sonics. But I have sort of created a genre of metal dance techno pop music with a lot of rock anthemic choruses because that is the music that I love. I’m actually really obsessed with Bruce Springsteen. My father used to play a lot of Bruce Springsteen records when I was a kid, and he was blue collar America. And in a way, I related to Bruce because I watched my father, a blue collar American citizen, relate to Bruce and I think that in a social way, my fans feel blue collar. They feel like they’re the underdogs that will someday be the winners. And I took the influence of Bruce on my father in my life to create this album. Lots of really big, almost big Def Leppard-style melodies in the choruses, but it’s electronic dance music. It’s very hard and very edgy, and I’m very excited for you to hear it.”
Popular on Rolling Stone
On teaming up with Clarence Clemons: “One of the songs on the album that is truly one of my favorites, it’s called “The Edge of Glory” and it’s kind of a sad story. Sorry to be a downer. But my grandpa died about five months ago, and my dad and I were going to say goodbye to him at the hospice, and I got out a big thing of agave tequila and my dad sat next to me at the piano and we started doing shots back and forth, and I wrote ‘The Edge of Glory’ on the piano and my dad and I cried. The song’s about your last moment on Earth, the moment of truth, the edge of glory is that moment right before you leave the Earth. So that song can be played on the piano, but it’s actually set to this giant, huge techno rock Springsteen-esque dance beat. I actually had Clarence Clemons from the E Street Band come in and play saxophone on it. It’s fucking beautiful.”
On why she is only tattooed on one side of her body: “It was actually per my father’s request. He asked that I remain, on one side, slightly normal. So I only have my tattoos on my left side. I think he sees this as my Marilyn Monroe side and he sees this as my Iggy Pop side.”
On what she won‘t do: “You will never see me do reality television. Don’t even ask. It will never happen. It’s just, I’m not that kind of person. My whole life is a performance piece. So I don’t need to get my picture taken to feel like I’m in a moment of art.”
On the Rebecca Black phenomenon: “I say, Rebecca Black is a genius, and anyone who’s telling her she’s cheesy is full of shit.”