By Nick Romano
February 21, 2016 at 10:33 PM EST
Lester Cohen/WireImage

After dropping jaws at the Grammys with her tribute performance to the late David Bowie, Lady Gaga explained what the musician has meant to her.

“How do I feel now that [the tribute performance is] over? I mean, I feel like my whole career is a tribute to David Bowie,” the singer told NPR during an interview.

“I’ve been watching his videos all day long, and also listening to Blackstar, his last album, which is a truly incredible piece of music,” she continued. “It’s one of the single greatest things an artist has ever done: making a masterpiece album that is their own eulogy. Can you imagine? To go into the studio every day and put your heart in that place, where you are saying goodbye to life? I mean, his art made him strong.”

Gaga explained the cover of Aladdin Sane “was an image that changed my life” at 19 years old, and his song “Watch That Man” marked “the beginning of my artistic birth.” She said, “I started to dress more expressively. I started to go to the library and look through more art books. I took an art history class. I was playing with a band.”

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“You know the way that Nile Rodgers talks about Coltrane, and the way that Coltrane makes him think about jazz? That’s how David Bowie is for me,” she continued. “You meet or see a musician that has something that is of another planet, of another time, and it changes you forever. I believe everyone has that, don’t you? That one thing you saw as a kid that made you go, ‘Oh, okay. Now I know who I am.'”


You can see Gaga’s Grammys performance in the video above.