QOTSA's Homme: What I Learned From Lady Gaga Working on Her New Album

"She just really surprised me, how passionately she made music."

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QOTSA's Homme: What I Learned From Lady Gaga Working on Her New Album
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QOTSA frontman Josh Homme was asked by Triple J on what he learned from his guitar guest appearance on Lady Gaga's recent single "Perfect Illusion," to which he replied (transcribed by UG):

"She was just very open minded - I really appreciated that.

"I also reserve the right to be surprised. I don't want to pretend that I know something. I don't really know anything.

"And she just really surprised me, how passionately she made music.

"The songs were really good, too. In a sea of music where other people are writing everything for you, she was just so in there, with her sleeves rolled up.

"And such a huge part of her music, which I find to be necessary for to come across in a way for in the way that can connect to people. We played Dean Martin who probably didn't write almost all his stuff and was a singer.

"So I'm not totally against this thing, I just feel like the goal should be not to just make hits, it should be to find it in yourself and all of this. Make a stack so you can get a little taller and connect with the people that you're close to."

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39 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Bunkerman
    Gaga is one of the few mainstream popstars keeping songwriting alive, I have nothing but respect for her.
    stixhogan
    What about Taylor Swift?
    shanetvogel
    T-Swift is heading in the wrong direction. She was great before the business took over. Gaga said "F you" to the business.
    stixhogan
    I get where you're coming from.  You can't discredit what she's done though.  Also, I find it amusing that I've been downvoted for bringing up another major pop star who writes their own songs.
    jimmy-moto
    All of Taylor's singles off her last album were written by songwriting heavyweight Max Martin with Taylor credited as a co-writer. Who knows how much involvement she actually had. As the the saying in the business goes, "change a word, get a third".
    stixhogan
    Well, she still burst onto the scene writing a ton of her own material as well as many other mega stars songs
    Bunkerman
    She gave in to the fame. She started individual and went corporate. Gaga herself has said that the pop shit was just to get her popular until she could do her own thing.
    arnolddrummer
    There are definitely some great pop artists. The Weeknd impresses me a lot too. 
    JaguarGod
    I'd strongly argue to label The Weeknd as a "great artist". He writes catchy as hell songs which I enjoy and has a good singing voice but his songs are pretty repetitive and seem to all revolve around cocaine and/or fingering. 
    arnolddrummer
    I think his songs are very diverse musically, especially if you give Starboy (the album) or The Beauty Behind the Madness listens. All of the songs differ quite a bit. And I know what you mean, he does tend to write mostly on women and a bit on drugs. I find he still does some interesting things lyrically on those themes. 
    bonekrusha27
    He didn't say that he learned anything from her. It sounds like he was trying to find nice things to say.  And then implies that he has to push her to focus more on trying to make hits. 
    bonekrusha27
    Sorry..typed that wrong. He has to push her to do something other than trying to write hits. 
    dannyalcatraz
    And I can see that. In my educational histor, I've had to learn 3 very different technical writing forms, each with their own rules. Songwriting is the same way.  Each genre of music has its formal or informal standards & rules.   Gaga knows how to write pop hits.  While she may enjoy harder genres, she may not have a clue as to how one writes in them,
    codi.joe.95
    What I find most fascinating about Stefani is her ability to venture into uncharted territory while maintaining her authenticity. She proved me wrong about just being an outlandish popstar, she's a work of art and I've learned to respect her after seeing her interviews. Like damn, not only does she have the voice, she's dead set on inspiring people to create and deviating from normal radio shit. Truly an underrated artist in my opinion. If you don't like her antics, just understand it has a purpose. she's been woke and if you can't appreciate that she's got millions of fans who will.
    bonekrusha27
    She goes all out for anything that she does.  I can't stand anything that she sells, but a lot of folks do and she tears the house down every time. 
    HarryParatestes
    heres some nice crossover radio crap for everyone to enjoy 
    Spinnerweb
    Here's one of those guys who preaches what 'real rock' and 'real metal' are.
    Anjohl
    Why do people still pretend she writes any of her own "songs"?
    dannyalcatraz
    She's actually got 70+ songwriting credits, including some for other artists like Brittney Spears, Michael Bolton, Adam Lambert, NKOTB, and Jennifer Lopez.
    brayal29
    Because she got her start as a songwriter for other acts, maybe?
    Anjohl
    Maybe, but all,of what's written for her is techno pop by professional songwriters. Her "songwriting" credits are for publishing purposes, similar to Ozzys.
    kenpotus
    Maybe because she does write most of her songs?  Did you not read what he said, that he saw with his own eyes how involved she was in writing her music?  What makes you think she does not write most of her songs?
    Anjohl
    The fact that it's documented that professional songwrits write her techno pop crap for her.
    dannyalcatraz
    She has a songwriting credit on each and every one of her songs, including the ones cowritten with heavy hitters. There's a saying, mentioned above, "change a word, get a third".  Is it possible that's what's happening?  Sure. But it that were true, she very unlikely she'd have had a job at Sony as a songwriter, especially for big name acts, which she did.  (See list above.) Her strength as a songwriter is what got her the exposure and opportunity to become a performe.
    Anjohl
    Yes, much the same as Ozzy Osbourne has songwriting credits on every Sabbath/Ozzy song he sung, despite him not writing anything. Stephanie got her job by being an average/below average looking wannabe who was willing to play ball, and step into a persona carefully constructed by radio label executives, where her every costume, word spoken, opinion, and characteristic would be determined for her. 
    dannyalcatraz
    You don't get paid to write songs for big name performers by trading on your looks.  Those songs don't get made into videos if you're unable to deliver hooks.
    zack2k
    Oh man, I knew UG users would flipped off whenever the OP write about Pop act.