At Sunday's awards show, Lady Gaga played a duet with Elton John. Nominatedd for five awards, including record of the year, but that's less important than her broader impact on music culture in the space of a year, which has been seismic.
Her debut album has generated four No. 1 songs. She topped the digital sales chart for 2009 with 15.3 million tracks sold. Her dance hits, including "Poker Face" and "Paparazzi," recalibrated the sound of pop radio with a spacey Euro vibe that's crept into songs by rock and rap artists. She grabbed attention beyond the music world with outfits that make her look like a refugee from a sci-fi film. In concert, on video and at past awards shows she has sported full facial masks, worn planetary rings around her head, and framed her face in what looked like a bird's nest.
"She's very vaudevillian," says an admiring Alice Cooper, the rocker whose history of stage theatrics includes simulated decapitations. But he says Gaga's antics only work because "she can really sing." from the Wall Street Journal.
Does this ring a bell, back to the 90's?
Garth Brooks's highest-selling album, with domestic shipments of 17 million. It contained what would become Brooks' signature song, the blue collar anthem "Friends in Low Places", as well as two other Brooks classics, the dramatic and controversial "The Thunder Rolls" and the philosophically ironic "Unanswered Prayers". Each of these songs, as well as the affectionate "Two of a Kind, Workin' on a Full House," reached #1 on the country chart. While Brooks' musical style placed him squarely within the boundaries of country music, he was strongly influenced by the 1970s singer-songwriter movement, especially the works of James Taylor (whom he idolized and named his first child after) and Dan Fogelberg.Similarly, Brooks was influenced by the operatic rock of the 1970s-era Freddie Mercury, Billy Joel, and Bruce Springsteen. In his highly successful live shows, Brooks used a wireless headset microphone to free himself to run about the stage, adding energy and arena rock theatrics to spice up the normally staid country music approach to concerts. The hard rock band Kiss was also one of his earliest grade school musical influences and his shows often reflected this. Brooks said that the style of his show was inspired mostly by Chris LeDoux. From Wikidepdia.
We need another hero - Tina Turner was wrong - Someone to electrify Country and bring some synergy to the format and musical styles with a shot of contemporary and rural roots, with a dirt road flavor.