Why I’m trying to learn every word of Lady Gaga’s ‘The Fame’ during quarantine
Lady Gaga's first album, 'The Fame,' came out in 2008. (Photo via Wikimedia Commons)
Although Shakespeare may have written King Lear while quarantining from the plague, I’ve set a more attainable goal for myself as I quarantine from the coronavirus: learning every word to every song from Lady Gaga’s hit debut album The Fame.
It may seem odd, but I have my reasons.
First, setting resolutions for one’s self can often be daunting, and you might feel the pressure to live up to something that was never achievable in the first place. Hence, my most recent New Year’s resolution was solely to drink more water (yes, you may call me the Hydration King.) And while ideally it’d be cool if I used my time in quarantine to do something worthwhile like writing a play, knitting a sweater or organizing my goddamn Google Drive, I decided on something I was already pretty close to achieving.
Second, I’m preparing myself for the upcoming release of Gaga’s sixth album Chromatica. Although the album was delayed from its original April 10 release date because of the coronavirus, my excitement for the album has certainly not dwindled. Chromatica’s first single “Stupid Love” is the bop of all bops and has been nothing but kind to me. So while I could go on an extensive tangent about any of Gaga’s albums (#Justice4ARTPOP), none of them have the same significance as her first.
Third, the album’s sentimental value is almost priceless to me. I can clearly remember my mom buying me the album from Walmart as a little Valentine’s Day present. And, to this day, the album brings me as much joy as it did over ten years ago.
The big boys from The Fame are ageless bangers. “Just Dance”? Perfection. “Paparazzi”? No flaws. “Poker Face”? A cultural reset.
And yet, even some of the lesser-known songs on the album still hold equal weight in terms of amazingness as those mentioned above.
You can’t deny the sonic delight that comes with the perfection that is the synth-pop “Starstruck,” which features Flo Rida and Space Cowboy. Also, my Instagram bio may or may not have contained, at one point, lyrics from the song. Moving along.
“Boys Boys Boys” is another crazy fun gem. Never in my life have I seen better songwriting than the line, “Love it when you call me ‘Legs,’ in the morning, buy me eggs.” I mean, COME ON!
Even the slower songs like “Brown Eyes” and “Paper Gangsta” are infectious in a way where you can’t stop listening to them. Although my eyes are a stunning shade of green and my savings account has less than $20, I feel like Gaga is singing to me and only me.
And I can’t overlook the flirtatiously kinky jam “I Like It Rough.” I might offend some, but I’ll say it: “I Like It Rough” walked so “S&M” by Rihanna could run — there, I said it!
However, my favorite track on the album is the laid-back, sunshine-y love song “Summerboy.” The track is the epitome of coasting down the road, windows down without a care and with the people you love most. And to whomever I marry one day (God willing), our first dance is going to be an acoustic version of this song — no exceptions.
Lady Gaga has been an idol to me for years. I’m not the first to say that, and I certainly won’t be the last, but her music has helped me care more about myself and care less what other people think about me.
And so however long I have to wait for Chromatica, I will do so patiently because I know it’s going to be outstanding (but don’t test me @ladygaga). But until I finally get that, I’ll still be happily jamming along to The Fame, as well as the rest of her discography.