Lady Gaga collaborates with R. Kelly | WBEZ
Skip to main content

Jim DeRogatis

Lady Gaga collaborates with R. Kelly

Previous Next
R. Kelly and Lady Gaga. (Andrew H. Walker/Ben Gabbe/Getty Images)

Stefani Germanotta is as well-known for championing female self-empowerment and an enlightened vision of sexuality (including gay rights) as she is for charting the cutting edge of modern dance-pop name under her better-known stage name, Lady Gaga.

So how does she square those causes with “Do What You Want,” her musically awkward collaboration with Chicago R&B star R. Kelly on her fourth album ARTPOP, due Nov. 8th?

Never reluctant to talk to the press, Gaga has yet to say how this pairing came about. But she hasn’t been hesitant to play into the Kelly mindset: The cover art features her posterior clad only in the tiniest of (thoia?) thongs, while the tune’s lyrics find her in an unusually submissive frame of mind: “You can’t have my heart and you won’t use my mind but/Do what u want with my body, do what you want with my body… Don’t stop, let’s party.”

UPDATED: The Tribune sheds some light on how Kelly and Gaga hooked up for their duet.

Perhaps, despite all the time she spends in Chicago to be near her boyfriend Taylor Kinney while he’s filming Chicago Fire, Gaga never has been exposed to WBEZ’s extensive coverage of Kelly’s troubling history. Or maybe, like the promoters of this summer’s Pitchfork Music Festival, she just doesn’t care about the harm the R&B singer has done to so many of her beloved “little monsters.” And that’s a sad notion indeed.

Follow me on Twitter @JimDeRogatis or join me on Facebook.

Get the WBEZ App

Download the best live and on-demand public radio experience. Find out more.