On Friday, the 1st October 2021, Lady Gaga released her new album Love for Sale. The album itself is a bunch of duets with the legend that is Tony Bennet. Some, if not most, of the duets are covers. However, that doesn’t mean it’s terrible.
Today I will be reviewing the song the album is titled after. And I am telling you ‘little monsters’ whether this is a hit or a miss.
Now the song is a cover of the song by Cole Porter. The change that is made here is a simple change of focalisation. As in the original, it’s told from the first-person point of view. Yet if you look at the lyrics below, it changes to a third person/ omnipresent viewpoint. The change makes sense as it’s now a song being dueted and told by two people. And so you can have this call and reply thing going on.
The next big thing is that the song starts at the second verse instead.
The first verse
Now the first verse is just Tony Bennett by himself.
Love for sale. Appetizing young love for sale. Love that’s fresh and still unspoiled love that’s only slightly soiled, love for sale
Now the song kicks right off with the trumpet and the drums sounding impeccable. The Jazz sounds comforting and instantly reminds you of music from the 1920s, possibly the thirties, if I’ve got my history right. If that doesn’t clear it up for you, I feel transported to a musical and am ready to dance and sing to it.
Once the drums, the piano and trumpet have calmed down, you hear a cello or bass strums. Giving it this lovely beat and continuing that 1930’s feel. I don’t know what it is, but it feels refreshing and clean and is just perfection to hear. Tony Bennet sounds impeccable and has this lovely accent that compliments the musicality so well.
On top of that, the ‘love that’s fresh and still unspoiled. Love that’s only slightly soiled.’ Although it only has the cello creating the music. It is pretty slow, but the line speeds up the rhythm.
Who will buy? Who would like to sample her supply? Who’s prepared to pay the price For a trip to paradise? Love for sale.
Lady Gaga has the first line, the fourth, and Tony Bennet joins her with the fourth line in verse two. Now I hadn’t seen shallow (Yes, I know faithful reader it is on my list to watch.) I wasn’t prepared for Lady Gaga to be able to reach the high notes on this song. The way she intonates on ‘buy’ and ‘paradise’ fits perfectly with the music and has a deep tone that sounds straight out of the time capsule it sounds like. When Lady Gaga sings, she has a brilliant richness and depth to her lyrics, and it is soothing to hear.
Verse three and four
Let the poets pipe of love in their childish way I know every type of love. Better far than they if you want the thrill of love she’s been through the mill of love old love, new love every love, but true love for sale appetizing young love for sale if you want to buy her wares follow me and climb the stairs love for sale
Now verses three and four are the same but are repeated. When Bennett and Gaga come together to sing ‘Love for sale.’ They easily reach the notes. And their voices compliment each other well. Both singers sound warm and rich.
You can also tell that Lady Gaga is having the time of her life with this duet when she sings, ‘Let the poets pipe of love in their childish way. I know every type of love Better far than they.’ She is having fun with the intonation on ‘poets’ and ‘childish ways.’ Lady Gaga is playing with her accent and projection. It also adds to the 1920’s vibe that the track has.
Versatility of Jazz
Verses three and four, where those intonation changes happen, highlights several things.
The first is the versatility of Jazz and how singers and musicians can change a tone or rhythm and make it sound good because Jazz can be versatile and made up on the spot with certain songs.
The other thing it shows is that Lady Gaga is having fun with it. You can hear her laughing and smiling behind the lines.
Between those two verses being repeated, there is a thirty-second instrumental where we hear all the instruments. Now, if you listen to pop music, usually like Lady Gaga’s audience probably do. Some might find it odd or weird or be waiting for something to happen and then discredit the song.
However, that’s just how Jazz works and works well with the song. Nothing wrong with it.
My final rating is four stars. It sounds brilliant, and the instrumentation ad collaboration between the two artists is pitch-perfect. Listen to Love for sale now!
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