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Lady Gaga Biography

Quick Facts

Name
Lady Gaga
Occupation 
Singer, Songwriter
Birth Date 
March 28, 1986 
Education 
New York University's Tisch School of the Arts
Place of Birth 
Yonkers, New York
AKA
Lady Gaga
 
Full Name
Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanott
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Pop icon Lady Gaga's debut album The Fame included hits "Just Dance" and "Poker Face." Her follow-up, The Fame Monster, was nominated for six Grammys.

Synopsis

Lady Gaga was born as Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta on March 28, 1986 in Yonkers, New York. She attended New York University's Tisch School for the Arts but left to find creative expression. She wrote songs for other artists until being discovered by R&B singer Akon. Her debut album, The Fame, was a huge success, and the single "Poker Face" topped charts in almost every category, in almost every country.

Early Life

Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta was born on March 28, 1986 in Yonkers, New York, to Cynthia and Joseph Germanotta. Germanotta, now known as Lady Gaga (she has attributed the inspiration for her name to the Queen song "Radio Ga-Ga"), went on to become an international pop star.

Gaga learned to play the piano by the age of 4. At the age of 11, she was accepted to the Juilliard School in Manhattan, but instead attended a private Catholic school in the city. She continued studying music and performing, writing her first piano ballad at the age of 13, and she held her first performance in a New York nightclub at the age of 14.

A few years later, Gaga was granted early admission to New York University's Tisch School of the Arts—she was one of only 20 students in the world to receive the honor of early acceptance. While there, she studied music and worked on her songwriting skills. She later withdrew from school to find creative inspiration. To make ends meet, she took three jobs, including a stint as a gogo dancer, while she honed her performance-art act.

Professional Debut

In 2005, Lady Gaga was briefly signed by Def Jam Records, but was dropped just months later. Being dropped by the label propelled the singer to perform on her own in clubs and venues on New York City's Lower East Side. There, she collaborated with several rock bands, and began her experimentation with fashion.

In 2007, at the age of 20, Gaga began work at Interscope Records as a songwriter for other artists on the label, including Britney Spears, New Kids on the Block, and The Pussycat Dolls. R&B singer Akon discovered Gaga while she was performing a burlesque show that she created, called "Lady Gaga and the Starlight Revue." Impressed, Akon signed the performer to his label under the Interscope umbrella, Kon Live. Through 2007 and 2008, Gaga wrote and recorded her debut album, The Fame. The record was received positive reviews and popular success in the United States. With the help of her own creative team, "Haus of Gaga," the performer also began to make a name for herself internationally.

Commercial Breakthrough

Lady Gaga's debut single, "Just Dance," was released to radio in early 2008, and received both popular and commercial acclaim. The song was then nominated for a Grammy Award (for best dance recording) in 2008. The song lost to Daft Punk's "Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger," but this didn't keep Gaga from reaching No. 1 on the mainstream pop charts in January 2009. The second single off of The Fame, "Poker Face," earned Gaga even more success. The song topped singles charts in almost every category, and in almost every country. Both songs were produced by Akon's affiliate RedOne, who co-wrote most of Lady Gaga's album.

Later in 2008, Lady Gaga opened for the newly reformed New Kids on the Block. She also collaborated with the group on the song "Big Girl Now" from New Kids on the Block's album The Block. The following year, Gaga released an album of eight songs, The Fame Monster, followed by 2011's Born This Way.

In 2013, Lady Gaga released her third studio album, Artpop. The album didn't resonate as strongly with her audience as her previous works. Among the shake-ups in her inner circle, she and her manager parted ways. In 2014, she released an album of jazz duets with crooner Tony Bennett entitled Cheek to Cheek. In an interview with Parade, Lady Gaga said of her latest collaboration, “Working with Tony has reaffirmed everything I knew but that you start to forget when your life changes and it gets really noisy. For ­Tony, it’s all about great music.”

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