Lady Gaga’s new album, “Joanne,” is a week away from release. Considering her talent, youth, and following, Gaga’s new release should be a monster hit, right?
But the signs are not good. She’s released two singles already and they’ve died. “Million Reasons” got as high as number 4 on iTunes, is now at 31, and has no airplay anywhere. It’s a very well crafted ballad, but it’s picked up no traction.
Similarly, “Perfect Illusion,” the first single, is now lodged at number 74 on iTunes. The rocker has just a little airplay, sitting on radio charts in the 30s.
Some people say (not Donald Trump) that because this is Gaga’s last contractual release on Interscope, the label is not doing anything.
Another point of view is that Gaga’s extra curricular career journey with Tony Bennett diluted her rock crowd, or pop, or whatever they are. She also gave up the wild outfits like meat dresses and her fashion-art side for amazing jazz vocals. In other words, she’s being punished for becoming a great artist.
The other problem is the lack of positive marketing. “Joanne” does not have an upbeat message. It’s named for her late aunt, who died from lupus at age 19, presumably well before Gaga was born. Not to be disrespectful, but that’s a downer for young people who want to dance and feel good. One great ballad called “Joanne” might have been enough to cover the aunt.
When “Joanne” arrives we’ll see what else Gaga has up her sleeve. Oh, for the days of songs with RedOne and “Just Dance.” But anyone looking for Beyonce-sized sales numbers next Friday is going to be disappointed.