And while she’s busy beating back people hating on her choice of album cover art, she also alienated legions of “Weird Al” Yankovic fans (or at least the two million people who follow him on Twitter).
The longtime parodist published a blog post today explaining why his new track “I Perform This Way”—a parody of Gaga’s char-topping smash “Born This Way”—is currently being given away for free and not getting a featured spot as the first single from his upcoming new album (nor is it getting a proper video treatment). Check out his version after the jump.
Update: Yankovic’s manager told the New York Times on Wednesday evening that Gaga’s camp has given permission for “Perform This Way” to appear on Weird Al’s next album.
Though Al’s work is protected legally by fair-use statutes, he makes it a habit of getting artists’ approval before he goes public with any of his tracks (Coolio famously got upset after Al turned the rapper’s “Gangsta’s Paradise” into “Amish Paradise”). After Gaga’s team requested to see the lyrics and then hear the finished song, the track ultimately got the thumbs down.
As Al explains, he’s not entirely sure what went wrong. “As of this posting, I still don’t know specifically what kind of problem she has with the song (obviously I take a few jabs at her, but y’know, it’s satire–that’s how it’s supposed to work),” he wrote. “And I’m especially confused as to why she waited until I actually recorded the song (at her insistence!) before saying no. It’s not like there were any surprises in the finished song that she couldn’t have foreseen by, you know, READING THE LYRICS.”
The kicker is that Al was reticent to send up such a positive jam in the first place. “After hearing the song, I was reluctant to tackle it,” Al wrote. “Because it was such an earnest human-rights anthem, I thought some people might consider a parody to be in poor taste.” Ultimately, he decided he would give the proceeds earned on the single and the video to the Human Rights Campaign as a gesture of good faith.
Of course, they won’t be seeing any money now, as the single will simply be released free via Al’s website (though he’s still encouraging his fans to donate to the HRC).
So what do you think, readers? Is Al’s parody of “Born This Way” in poor taste, or is Lady Gaga just born too sensitive? Sound off in the comments (and let us know your favorite lines—we’re partial to “I’ll wear a porcupine on my head/ On a W-H-I-M”).
Lady Gaga reveals cover art for ‘Born This Way’ album: Do you like Gaga as a machine?