What’s GAGA about Lady Gaga?

by Howard K. Smith on September 16, 2011

Lady Gaga in Drag lookalike Jo Calderone.

The Art of Jo Calderone: Lady Gaga!

‘The greatest fashion is not to follow the fashion.’ And who knows it better than Lady Gaga? I mean who would have imagined that in a crowd of fine ladies attired in ‘expensive silks’ or the likes, someone would actually dare to sport raw flesh for a fashion statement. They say there’s a fine line between creativity and stark craziness; Lady Gaga does know how to play with this fine boundary and she plays well.

The Lady Gaga craze is taking the world by storm. Rising from the obscurity of a touchy childhood (as she admits herself), she seems to have discovered an invincible aspect of her ‘self’ with which she is able express herself beyond the conventional meaning of expression. It’s evident in her songs, her attires and her very lifestyle. The strength of her songs lies in the manner they appeal to something deep inside us. The lyrics may not be ‘classic’ but she has her own way of creating music out of life giving her creations a worldwide appeal. It’s not only about the content of the songs, the real appeal lies in the very way she showcases them with a unique blend of her carefree personality. They are never boring or conventional because they bear vivid glimpses of the rawness of human nature that we have buried deep inside ourselves. She manages to uncover those raw, primal expressions within herself and use them to give a whole new level of energy to her songs and it really shows in her music.

As an individual, she has said that she believes in a complexity of identity. Recently, she took us by surprise appearing in a music event dressed as a male. She deems it her male alter ego- Jo Calderone. It’s just one of the numerous accounts of her eccentric appearances. She likes to flaunt the dynamics of her personality in bizarre attires and gestures. Some call her crazy and even claim that she has an acute form of identity crisis but again, it’s comes to that flexible line between creativity and eccentricity though she has recently admitted that she does it for the audience who expect some level of outlandishness from her. Whatsoever, she does what she feels like doing and the world loves it, at least most of the world does.

Beneath the complexities of her own personality, she is ultimately a singer and music is her art. From the controversial biblical depiction of her personal tragedy in ‘Judas’ to a worldwide message of ‘self-acceptance’ in ‘Born this Way’, she has proven the innate musical talent hidden beneath her eccentricities. There has been frequent comparison of her musical style with the likes of ‘Madonna’ and ‘Gwen Stefani’ but the basis of her unique appeal lies in the outlandish blend of her personality and music, and the level of uncertainty that surrounds her persona. She is weird, she is controversial and she is unique but whether it’s inside the ‘plastic bubble dress’ or beneath the smell of raw flesh enveloping her body, this lady has something ‘GAGA’ about her and we all love it.

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