Who would have thought making fun of Lady Gaga would be this difficult?
"Weird" Al Yankovic - who has built a career out of parody songs based on hit singles from the likes of Michael Jackson, Madonna, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers - was all set to take on Lady Gaga's "Born This Way" even though, as he explains on his official blog, he was originally apprehensive.
"Based on my concept, I was reasonably sure that my parody wasn’t really going to offend anybody," writes Yankovic. "But I still decided, as an act of good karma, that I would donate all the money from sales of the song and music video to the Human Rights Campaign."
However, after forcing Yankovic to actually record (at his own expense) the completed song before signing off on it (something he has never done, not even for the illustrious Jackson), Lady Gaga officially nixed "I Perform This Way," Yankovic's version of her hit "Born This Way." (The lyrics essentially make fun of her outlandish stage costumes)
So what did Yankovic do? He released the song anyway. For free.
My parodies have always fallen under what the courts call “fair use'," explains Yankovic. "And this one was no different, legally allowing me to record and release it without permission. But it has always been my personal policy to get the consent of the original artist before including my parodies on any album, so of course I will respect Gaga’s wishes. However, given the circumstances, I have no problem with allowing people to hear it online, because I also have a personal policy not to completely waste my stinking time."
Rumors are already starting that Lady Gaga did not, in fact, reject Yankovic and that this all is a misunderstanding. Stay tuned.