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Joanne: A new side of Gaga

Britt Campbell, Journalist

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Anyone who has ever listened to Lady Gaga knows that her music is wild and eccentric. It’s electropop and paints a vivid picture of sex and fame. For those of you who haven’t listened to Lady Gaga, do yourself a favor and look up “Poker Face” and “Bad Romance.” You’ll thank me later.

Lady Gaga released her new album on October 21st, and it’s already a hit with fans. But why? The album, named “Joanne” after Gaga’s aunt, is a complete enigma compared to her usual material.

The answer is simple: “Joanne” presents a unique, more human side of Gaga. She presents her fans with a vulnerable state of mind and expands the genres her voice is suited to.

Most Gaga albums make you want to dawn a sequin dress and spike heels and take the world by force; Joanne makes one want to sit on the back porch of a cabin with cowboy boots and strum an acoustic guitar.

The fourteen songs each display a softer, more transparent Gaga. Take the song “Come to Mama,” a song about loving one another. The song itself is doo-wop in nature, but the message is in a modern context. It’s positive and relatable, and definitely a song you’ll want on repeat.

According to an interview with New York Times Style Magazine, Gaga’s aunt, the album’s namesake, died when she was nineteen. This is what inspired the song “Joanne.” “Joanne” asks two separate questions, says Gaga. It asks where the deceased Joanne is going, but also presents a question to a much younger version of Lady Gaga. She states, “I had no idea where I was going,” and she feels compelled to genuinely ask herself where it is she plans to be in the future. Faced with reality, young Gaga was forced to reevaluate her goals. Now, she reflects on this time in her life with melancholy.

“Joanne” is also Lady Gaga’s middle name, and she explains that this album is representative of the “center” of her as both a “true rebel” and her “father’s daughter.”

There are, of course, still songs typical of Gaga on the Joanne album. “Perfect Illusion,” “Dancin’ in Circles,” and “A-YO” all have the feel of what we’ve come to expect as Gaga fans. You can totally still rock out to Gaga. But now, you can relate to her, too.

Joanne, ultimately, will appeal to a wider audience. This new side of Gaga is real and easy to connect with. Not everyone can relate to the life of fame, but anyone can relate to losing a loved one or feeling lost.

Personally, I enjoyed the album. I’ve always loved Gaga, but I was a little unsure about this one. I could tell from the pastel pinks and blues of the album cover that this would be a change from the norm.

Despite not knowing what to expect, I was most certainly not disappointed. “Come to Mama,” “Joanne,” and “John Wayne” were some of my top favorites, but the whole album is great.

I strongly recommend this album to anyone who already loves Gaga and to anyone just getting to know her. It’s an album that allows a more personal relationship between Gaga and her fans.

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Joanne: A new side of Gaga