The most anticipated performance at the fifty-eighth Annual Grammy Awards was Lady Gaga’s David Bowie tribute.
Gaga received high praise from fellow artists and fans, but not everyone thought it was fitting.
Duncan Jones, son of David Bowie, apparently tweeted the definition of the word “gaga” after her performance: ‘“over excited or irrational, typically as a result of infatuation or excessive enthusiasm; mentally confused.”
Many thought Jones was being too harsh on Gaga, while others argued he is allowed to have his own opinion since the performance was a tribute to his father.
“Tributing David Bowie [is] the most incredible honor anyone has ever given me. It takes me way back to why I started Lady Gaga. ‘Cuz I was eighteen and I was still Stefani and then the more I discovered David Bowie the stronger I became,” Gaga said in an interview with Intel and the Grammys a month before the award show.
Singer-songwriter David Bowie died from liver cancer at the age of 69 on Jan. 10, 2016, a little less than two months before the Grammys.
Gaga was approached by Grammy executives to lead the tribute about a month before the show. She credited Bowie as “inspiration” for her first album, The Fame (2008).
As her career took flight, she continued to credit Bowie for her success.
She was then approached by Intel, who wanted to test new technology for her performance.
Gaga, along with producer Nile Rodgers, worked with the Intel technology for an entire month leading up to the show.
Intel created robots, holograms and live on-stage graphics specifically for Gaga’s Bowie tribute. Gaga’s partnership with Intel for the performance marks the first collaboration of its kind at the Grammys.
The actual performance lasted a little over six minutes.
The set list was: “Space Oddity,” “Changes,” “Ziggy Stardust,” “Suffragette City,” “Rebel Rebel,” “Fashion,” “Fame,” “Under Pressure,” “Let’s Dance” and “Heroes.” Taking the stage in front of millions to honor your idol isn’t an easy task.
Yet, she was able to pull of such a feat because she is Lady Gaga, and what we’ve learned from her performances is that she is an artist who can wear many different hats.
The performance was met with rave reviews from fans and critics on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
Yes, Gaga has made it clear over the years that Bowie has had a huge influence on who she is as an artist. It took the world a while to accept Gaga for the eccentric, outrageous and flamboyant artist she is.
Although she has had quite the colorful career, I believe some people are still trying to figure her out.
Jones has every right to have his own opinion of Gaga’s performance because, after all, Bowie was his father.
Yet I also think he should take a step back and look at the time and effort Gaga, along with her team and Intel, took to make this performance special and memorable.
Gaga did her best to honor her late idol, and, even if it wasn’t up to Jones’ standards, she did the best she could to honor Bowie’s legacy in her eyes.
No performance can be perfect, especially when one is trying to live up to David Bowie standards, but it was a performance that came from her heart.
Lizzie Zelenka can be contacted at email@example.com