As Lady Gaga turns 33 today, here’s our list of top record breaking singles sizzling with Gaga drama, unrivalled fun and overflowing symbolism.
“Poker Face” – The Fame
Released in 2008, “Poker Face,” the second single of her album, The Fame features a strong melody with two unforgettable, defining hooks, “Mum mum mum mah” and in the chorus, “Can’t read my poker face.”
Happy birthday, @ladygaga! The songstress that gave us hits like "Bad Romance," "Poker Face," and "Shallow" turns 33 today! Celebrate with our Lady Gaga A-Z playlist: https://t.co/cfWuDAVIPo pic.twitter.com/M3qym83MpT
— Pandora (@pandoramusic) March 28, 2019
The robotic resonance, as fitting with the synth pop or techno pop genre matches the hit’s heading, “Pokerface” referring to an expressionless face. In an exclusive London gig, hosted by Belvedere vodka, Gaga explained to fans how the song came into play, “You know his song is actually about when I was making love to this guy that I was dating a long time ago…I was thinking about chicks every time we had sex.”
“Bad Romance” – The Fame Monster
Following Poker Face’s glory, Gaga managed to create another chart topping success with “Bad Romance.” Written and produced with the help of Nadir Khayat, the song lyrics combined with the music video’s sinister imagery offers a dark humoured portrayal of Gaga’s complex relationship history with men at that time.
The single itself became the most downloaded song in UK Chart history, while the music video for “Bad Romance” shot up to the most viewed video on YouTube in 2010.
“Born This Way” – Born This Way
As Gaga received international acclaim with her album, The Fame, she also courted attention for her unique sense of style. At the 2010 MTV Music Awards, she wore a now iconic meat dress made up of raw steak; in spite of the controversy from animal rights groups, the outfit was hailed by the Time as 2010’s top fashion statement, which led to Gaga being labelled the top fashion buzzword by the Global Language Monitor.
— Mahahahaha (@sublimearchiac) March 25, 2019
Inspired by the synth pop genre that paved the success of “Pokerface,” Gaga fuses disco, techno beats and metal into “Born This Way.” Her lyrics such as “You’re black, white, beige, chola descent,” “Don’t be a drag, just be a queen” and “God makes no mistakes’ merge the different identity markers of sexuality, race and religion.”
Gaga’s chorus hook, “Cause I was born this way” goes onto to eradicate the difference, through highlighting how we are all ultimately “born this way.”
“Applause” – Art Pop
Aired in 2013, “Applause” pays tribute to the on-going support from her fans, especially during her Born This Way Ball Tour, where she experienced immense pain from a hip injury. Their applause encouraged her to continue onwards with the tour, until her performance’s movements caused the injury to worsen and sustain a tear to the right hip.
Applause’s electro pop form of tech-pop and upbeat dance music was an international victory for Gaga, reaching the top 10 across music charts in South Korea, Turkey, Israel, Japan, Scotland and New Zealand.
Applause (Viceroy Remix) – Lady Gaga pic.twitter.com/Q3A6ZV7gUL
— J|Yali 🇸🇳 (@_03033_) March 25, 2019
In typical Gaga fashion, the music video is saturated with imagery. Una Mullally for Irish Times comments on the allusion to Botticelli’s Birth Of Venus and the hands across her breasts costume being reminiscent of Bowie’s 1973 green hands and cobweb costume designed by Korniloff, that was barred from American Television.
Although, what’s Gaga without the rich symbolism, dark humor, satire and glorious drama. Happy Birthday, Lady Gaga!
— Fuse (@fusetv) March 28, 2019
A star was born 33 years ago today. Happy birthday to the one and only Lady Gaga 🌟🎂🌟 WE LOVE YOU! pic.twitter.com/ff9cR9HiLc
— Marc Jacobs (@marcjacobs) March 28, 2019