While the single has already landed at #1 on the iTunes charts, some listeners have remarked that the track sounds reminiscent of another rule-breaking pop diva: Madonna. "Born This Way" made the Internet rounds on Friday (February 11), and reactions were coming quickly on Twitter, as well on Top 40 radio. MTV News caught up with a few Gaga experts who weighed in on Gaga's new song and talk of comparisons to Madonna classics.
DJ Riddler of Houston's Hot 95.7 and Sirius/XM's BPM told us, "I got the email at 3:45 a.m. from Z100 to play it during my 5 p.m. show today. When I first heard 'Born This Way,' the melody had similarities to Madonna's 'Vogue.' Then as I continued listening, the chorus sounded like 'Express Yourself.' Finally, the end with the choir chant reminded me of 'Like a Prayer.' "
Riddler went on to compare "Born This Way" to "an updated Madonna Megamix," adding, "Just as those early Madonna singles were #1 hits, this one is destined to do the same."
DJ Uch of Long Island's Party 101.5, however, only found it to be a slight nod to early Madonna, not an overt copy.
"Before I got a chance to listen to the new Lady Gaga single 'Born This Way,' my Twitter was flooded with comparisons to Madonna's 'Express Yourself' and 'Vogue.' When I took a listen, initially, I thought that was a stretch, but the hook is definitely a tinge of vintage Madonna," Uch told MTV News.
"Still, those songs came out when Gaga was in diapers, and I'm sure Gaga's core audience don't have the nostalgia because they, too, were babies or not even alive. Truth is that all artists borrow from the work of early pioneers and the only ones who notice the similarities are those old enough to remember 'way back when,' " Uch argued. " 'Born This Way' is super catchy and will be an international hit I'm sure. I have the melody stuck in my head and I only heard it once, 15 minutes ago. Congrats to Gaga!" he added.
John Polly of the Logo network told MTV News, "She seems to borrow pretty heavily, clearly visually, and sonically, from Madonna. Which is probably super smart, I mean, why wouldn't you?" Polly asked. "As far as we know, she seems to have Madonna's blessing."
Elsewhere, comedian Gabe Liebman, who joked that "Born This Way" "will be the gay anthem for as long as it takes until her next song comes out," was clearly on Team Gaga. While he admitted it "sounds exactly like a Madonna song," he found it to be "more fun, less annoying" and that Gaga is "younger and a lot more in touch" with today's listeners.
But, not everyone was as ready to give credit to Gaga on her latest venture. Record producer Junior Sanchez not only found similarities to Madonna, but also '90s supergroup TLC. "At first listen, the verses remind me of TLC's 'Waterfalls,' " he said.
Sanchez believes that Gaga's dance tracks "are definitely current and right on spot," but he's still waiting to hear more diversity from the star. "I'm still waiting for her 'Rain' or 'Live to Tell' or 'Take a Bow,' " he said checking off Madonna hits. "Gaga is genius but to compare her to Madonna so early on in her career is a little premature. Madonna has been with us for three decades now."
Sanchez told MTV that he finds "Gaga's take on how to deal with the gay issues in our culture interesting," but unlike Madonna, "the songs are not as strong." "Let's see what happens" he said of Gaga's future. "She could definitely change things and we could have a new pop icon for the next decades to come."
Does Gaga's "Born This Way" remind you of Madonna's classics? Tell us in the comments!