(alternative title: Gaga vs. del Rey comeback confrontation countdown) So what is it about these two young ladies who besides sharing the same age (they’re both born in 1986 just two months away) seem to have started a war to determine who’s the fairest of them all? The most talented and most appealing entertainer?
I’m trying to approach this from a fashion-style amateur perspective and not from a musical point of view as my knowledge about their performing talents is just borderline relevant, not being a fan or extensive listener of either of them.
As is the habit nowadays, people are judged after the coat on their backs, their look more than they are from what their innate talents can produce to entertain the crowds. Because nobody has time and patience to see how ‘natural’ works. We have to tweak it, bend it and make it likable on the spot. Flash productivity. How do you do that? By changing the shell. By painting the walls of the same home in a brighter, different color so that people who went by your street and who didn’t stop to look at a white house now they’d just be paralyzed to see your house suddenly turned neon blue! (… we’ll get to Gaga in a sec, jump with me!)
So Gaga, who used to go by her parents-given name Stephanie Germanotta, completely reinvented herself in order to make it in the entertainment business. Which worked amazingly for her. Nobody had gone as far as she did for the wide audience. Wearing spikes and thorns and little else raised her to a Fame Monster stature. But things went south with her as the audience wanted more and more of her edgy sandwich with controversy sauce. A hip surgery later and months of living under-the-radar, Gaga had to stage a proper comeback.
Nothing could be left to chance and to the old Monster-charm to work. So: time to reinvent her stage persona all over again. A magazine spread later (sans clothes but with high media coverage) and an artistic installation with Marina Abramovic, she who was named Forbes’ top earning celebrity under 30 is coming back strong with a new look and a new perspective: natural style / artpop approach.
No more blond wigs but raven dark hair instead. No more sequined makeup but bleached eyebrows instead, no more caged masks but a nose ring to spice things up. Will it work? With friends such as Inez and Vinoodh and Marina Abramovic (to name just three of her very artsy entourage) supporting the change I have no doubts whatsoever that Lady Gaga will bring her natural style / artpop comeback to a level of must follow fashion!
Now, you might ask yourselves why I didn’t opt for a compared, side-by-side study of Gaga and Lana del Rey. The answer is simple: because there’s really nothing to compare. I might have tricked you into believing there was, because that’s what the media wants: competition. But there’s no real competition. Like there never was between Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera. Or Rihanna and Katy Perry to name just a few of the ‘media feuds’ between oh-so-famous entertainers. The stages of the world are wide enough for both of them. For all of them.
But there are undeniable similarities between Gaga’s and Del Rey’s stories. Because they’re both invented by the media for the media. Lana used to be this lovely romantic singer with a dreamy voice named Lizzie Grant. But singing in bars and underground cafes wouldn’t have sold records. Shaping up and like a pin-up hippie who was reengineered to appear and sound like she would be trapped in the past is how she brings in the big $$$. And that’s what matters most, isn’t it?
That’s how this story came to be: because an alleged feud came between Gaga and Lana as they’re both preparing to launch new material and del Rey’s (who’s busy showing off her alleged engagement ring while shopping for a lovenest with boyfriend Barrie James O’Neill) just happened to leak online. Really. Just… a bunch of pixie dust abracadazoom and bam! the internet was full of her new material while Gaga was just teasing us with her new fancy upcoming single cover! Made up stories, made up heat for made up stars. (yawn!)
So when is Adele dropping her new material, huh?