Thursday, 3 June 2010

I’m a free bitch, baby!

‘I am here to proclaim your liberation,’ she told us. A preacher for the night, a high priestess who couldn’t imagine any other death than one that took place in the sanctuary of the stage, a messiah sacrificing herself for our love. ‘Some say I’m an irreligious woman,’ she cried over Alejandro, ‘but tonight, let’s go to church, London!’

Such was Lady Gaga’s charisma that, right up in the gods of the O2 arena, when she lay down on the stage as if it was a psychiatrist’s couch and explained that she was nothing – nothing – without the love of her fans, that our love had spoilt her for a relationship with anyone else, I felt like I was the only one there. When she sang, ‘I’m your biggest fan, I’ll follow you until you love me’, the curious inversion of the dynamics of watcher/watched felt oddly intimate (and less manipulative than you might think).*

She hates money and plastic surgery and the fact that she loves alcohol-dependent men like her father. She loves difference. Again and again she told us to be free – free to be freaks and geeks, gay, straight or bisexual, to do what we wanted and to tell those who say we aren’t good enough, ‘Fuck you!’

She lay on her piano upside down, conducting her band and playing the piano with her stiletto. This lady is talented. Her voice is enormous. Her clothes are huge. She told us that she also has a very big penis. And her breasts actually shoot fireworks.

She was Dorothy, Tinkerbell, the Pied Piper, Mary. She was a monster-slayer who wanted us to kill our own demons. She was the Mommy to her ‘little monsters’. She very consciously sees herself (at least when she’s performing) through the eyes of her fans. It’s the love/applause of others that brings her to life. Christ or Tinkerbell?

Be free, she said. Be in the moment (we were told off for photographing her - ‘I’ll be back again!’ - a command to experience the present I wish had been emphasised when I went to mass at St Peter’s). This is no Madonna crucifying herself in the ultimate act of self-reference. Lady GaGa is something else altogether. ‘I promise I’ll be kind’, she sang to me. In the end, I believed her.

*Her tweets from the MEN Arena tonight, responding to a fan’s complaint that people weren’t being let into the venue with coke cans in their hair, are very cute. Sounds like she gave the arena staff a bollocking for being mean to her babies...

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