Should my music snob card be revoked? I pride myself on being a music snob. I tend quite a bit of “popular music”. It’s just in my nature. With a few exceptions, if I do like something that has “mass appeal” I say that I like it “ironically”.
Yet, something strange happened in the summer of 2009. I found myself liking (sincerely) a pop-star. At first, I tried to convince myself I liked her as “guilty pleasure”. But something about Lady Gaga intrigued me. Was it that “Poker Face” was just so damn catchy? That couldn’t be it. I never downloaded a catchy song by a current pop artist off of Itunes before. And I certainly never listened to a song like that some 30 times.
Then it hit me. Lady Gaga for all of her radio and media domination at the moment, is downright weird. I think it’s the weirdness that appeals to me. When I first saw The Rolling Stone cover she did a few months back, I wasn’t sure what to think. The wild pink fro. The bubbles she was wearing for a “dress”. It almost looked like she was in utero. Yet, there was something interesting about it. Whatever it was, it definitely wasn’t “sexy” in the conventional sense. And that is what made it awesome.
Perhaps, Lady Gaga is the first icon of a new kind. “Post-sexual”? I’m not sure. But the lightning bolt on the image above is pure David Bowie. With “Ziggy Stardust” Bowie played with the conventions of a transvestite. So is Gaga playing a woman posed as a man posed a woman?
Some may accuse her of being “calculated” and “fake”. Perhaps. But I tend to think she really is that weird. Even if she was not famous, she would still be off the wall. The difference is that people would think she was a freak instead of a new of type of pop-star.
Back to the music though. My girlfriend bought me “The Fame” recently. And I have to say, I’m throughly enjoying it. The songs are mostly typical pop songs in format. Performance wise though, they are different and perhaps unconventional. For one thing her songs seem soaked in irony and excess. Yet, there is something believable about her performances because she is so weird.
Plus any girl that takes Kermit the Frog as her date to the Video Music Awards (I refuse to use the acronym) is okay by me.