Lady Gaga changed her name because Stefani’s a “perpetually tortured artist”


Lady Gaga covers the next issue of Elle magazine, and she reveals why she adopted a stage persona for her pop career. “I am – Stefani [Germanotta] is – a perpetually tortured artist. That’s why I changed my name. I can’t be her in public. She would be a mess,” Gaga told the magazine.

She says she’s been through a lot to get where she is, and hates when people don’t think she struggled. “Everyone is so cynical — that I can’t purely love my fans, or share an honest story about my past, without someone asking me if I really, truly struggled,” she says.” Do you know how much dirt I ate? Do you know the men I had to crawl through, the people that disrespected my body, my mind, my heart?”

Despite all the struggle and torture, she says she can handle pressure with the best of them “What are you talking about pressure? I’m great under pressure. I’m warrior. I’m Rocky, round 12.”

Before Stefani changed her name in 2007-8, she recorded an EP under her real name.

Here’s a song from that era:

Back before she hit big, she was hanging around dive rock-n-roll and metal bars in the Lower East Side, go-go dancing. According to a memoir one of her best friends recently published, had a record deal with Island Def Jam records with a $800,000 advance, but it fell through. Her father fought to help his daughter keep part of the advance so she could continue following her dreams and wouldn’t have to go back to school.

The name “Gaga” comes from a Queen song called “Radio Gaga,” which was a critique both of the new music video revolution, and the commercialization of radio, with radio stations playing the same songs over and over.

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