Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta (born March 28, 1986), better known by her stage name Lady Gaga, is an American pop singer-songwriter.Gaga came to prominence following the release of her debut studio album The Fame (2008), which was a critical and commercial success and achieved international popularity with the singles "Just Dance" and "Poker Face". The album reached number one on the record charts of six countries, topped the Billboard Dance/Electronic Albums chart while simultaneously peaking at number two on the Billboard 200 chart in the United States and accomplished positions within the top ten worldwide. Achieving similar worldwide success, The Fame Monster (2009), its follow-up, produced a further three global chart-topping singles "Bad Romance", "Telephone" and "Alejandro" and allowed her to embark on her second global concert tour, The Monster Ball Tour, just months after having finished her first, The Fame Ball Tour.
Born This Way is the second studio album by American recording artist Lady Gaga. It was released on May 23, 2011 by Interscope Records as a follow up to her internationally successful, The Fame (2008) and the extended play The Fame Monster (2009). Born This Way is notably different from The Fame and The Fame Monster as it incorporates a broader range of elements of several musical genres such as opera, heavy metal, disco, and rock and roll, and fuses those elements with sounds of electropop and dance. The album is heavily inspired by synthpop and electronic music from the 1980s and 90s. In the album, the central themes include those of religion, sexuality and feminism. RedOne and Fernando Garibay are the only producers on the album with whom Gaga has previously collaborated. Gaga took more control of her musical direction and the album composition. Production first took place in early 2010 and recording sessions at various recording studios around the world.
The title was revealed in September at the 2010 MTV Video Music Awards after Gaga's win of the Video of the Year Award for "Bad Romance". A week before the album's scheduled release, the contents were leaked online, but were shortly removed due to copyright violations. Three singles and one promotional single were released for the album. "Born This Way", the lead single, topped the charts in over eighteen countries including the Billboard Hot 100 in the United States. It would become the fastest selling single in iTunes history, having sold over one million copies within its first five days. "Judas" was the second single for Born This Way.
The song peaked on the top ten in nineteen countries. "The Edge of Glory", originally released as one of two proposed promotional singles, was made as the third single of the album. The song debuted at number three on the Hot 100 and topped the charts in Brazil and South Korea. The promotional single for the album, "Hair", peaked at number twelve on the Billboard Hot 100 and charted in sixteen different countries.
The album received generally positive reception from music critics, who complimented Gaga's vocals and the album's varying musical styles. However, Born This Way would come under fire from several religious commentators and organizations, whom expressed discontentment towards its incorporation of several religious icons of Christianity and its supportive stance of sexuality.
Similar to being a critical success, the album was an international success, topping the charts in over twenty-three countries. In the United States, the album sold over 1.11 million copies in its first week, the largest first-week album sales in over six years. Over 430,000 of these sales were at a special price of 99 cents, which Amazon.com offered for two days during the album's first week of release. As of June 2011, Born This Way has sold 5 million copes worldwide.
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