Madonna tells 20/20 what she really think of Lady GagaBefore Justin Timberlake or Usher, there was Michael Jackson. Before Justin Bieber, there was David Cassidy ... (and Usher and Justin Timberlake, come to think of it). But before Lady Gaga came Madonna ... drr. And apparently Madonna herself doesn't realize we're already WELL aware of this. In an "honest, up close" interview with 20/20's Cynthia McFadden that airs tonight, Madge is finally speaking out on the Mother Monster -- specifically on how she feels about the reminiscent sound of "Born This Way" and being one of Ms. Germanotta's inspirations. And although she's supposedly a fan of her younger incarnation's work, the early released quotes from the interview make her come off as quite the opposite.
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The singer was asked if she thinks Gaga is "copying" her. (What kind of word choice is that anyway; are we in grade school? Anyway ...) And she responded:
I certainly think she references me a lot in her work. And sometimes I think it’s amusing and flattering and well done ... There’s a lot of ways to look at it. I can’t really be annoyed by it ... because, obviously, I’ve influenced her. [Her work appears to be] a statement about taking something that was in the Zeitgeist, you know, 20 years ago and turning it inside out and reinterpreting it.
Okay, fair enough. But when the conversation turns to "Born This Way"'s similarities to "Express Yourself," Madonna got less generous ...
When I heard it on the radio …I said that sounds very familiar. ... It felt reductive.
Reductive, as in, "minimal" or "crude." Wow, Material Girl, passive-aggressive much? Did you say that in your fake, condescending English accent, while you were at it? And as long as we're going there, Gaga's response to the "Born This Way" comparison appeared in NME in April:
It's the same [chord progression] that's been in disco music for the last 50 years. Just because I'm the first f***ing artist in 25 years to think of putting it on Top 40 radio, it doesn't mean I'm a plagiarist, it means that I'm f***ing smart. Sorry.
Now, although this rivalry over a damn chord progression is something that should have been water under the bridge at least MONTHS ago, it seems like Madonna has no problem using the "controversy" to get tongues wagging in the wake of her "comeback." (She has a new album on the way.) It seems she feels she needs to remind us that SHE came first, and SHE's still the reigning Queen, while Gaga's her puny little Xerox.
But no matter what her rationale is for the passive-aggressive words, she comes off sounding catty and desperate. Really, give me a break, Madonna. Even a drop of snark is uncalled for and pathetic. If she really was still the Queen of Pop, you would think it would be beneath her. Sadly, it just shows her insecurities as she tries to resuscitate her relevance.
Don't get me wrong -- I consider myself a Madonna fan and have since I was 7 years old -- but I'd have a bit more respect for Madge if she could have contained herself from stooping this low.
What do you think about Madonna's snarky words for Gaga -- unnecessarily nasty or very necessary?
Image via ABCNews.com