On the surface, Lady Gaga is the antithesis of most of the agricultural world. She is know for the most outlandish outfits for work — things we can’t even dream up. Farmers tend to wear something practical, that can stand up to hard work and getting dirty. When it comes to politics, Lady Gaga seems to embrace social justice issues like GLBT rights whereas I tend to hear farmers talk about the environment and food security with the Farm Bill, etc. The folks who are interested in Lady Gaga’s products are monsters whereas people who are really interested in what happens on the farm may be foodies. Lady Gaga has almost 40 million people who like her Facebook page and ten million followers on Twitter. While I know some really popular farmers, I don’t know anyone that has that sort of reach.
Sure, I gave a shout out to her efforts in tsunami relief this year, but her connections to farming and agriculture keep making me think I need to blog about her agricultural connections.
- Meaty Fashion Choice — I think the first time I thought about writing a blog post was when Gaga wore the infamous meat dress donned for the MTV Music Awards and the cover of Vogue Hommes Japan. I didn’t know whether to love the idea of the dress and the statement she was making or be disgusted by the idea that meat would be touching skin for a long time which would have to feel weird after a few minutes. Brandi did a post about the meat dress you may want to read. Some of the cattlemen and women who come to mind when I think of beef are: Mike & Pam Haley, Debbie Lyons-Blythe, Darin Grimm and Jillian & Jared Etress.
- Recording Location— Sure Gaga is proudly in New York a lot of the time and she makes headlines on the West Coast but she’s also familiar with the “fly over states.” This Facebook post drew my attention a few months ago.
Some of the great Nebraskan farmers & ranchers that come to mind are Jecca Ostrander, Ryan Weeks, Kelsey Pope and Randy Uhrmacher.
- Farmville Meets Gaga — I’ve written a couple of posts about Farmville, mainly because I found it nearly impossible to understand how popular it became. This spring, Farmville and Lady Gaga joined forces to do something additional with the game platform. Gaga certain is bringing a bit of sparkle to some of the down home things farmers deal with every day. The video was great entertainment (as you can see from the screenshot). Crystal Young’s blog post about Gagaville was what raised it to my attention in May. I wonder if Crystal, Ryan Goodman, or Jeff Fowle have sparkly saddles like this one!
- Perform This Way — The fact that this week’s “reason to #agblog Lady Gaga” is the one that pushed me over the brink, is funny in that it is really as much Weird Al Yankovic. See Weird Al released his version of the Lady Gaga song “Born this Way” called “Perform this Way.” In typical Weird Al style, he goes above and beyond in the parody, which made several connections to farm products — the famed meat dress (of skirt steak according to Al) and outfits made of Swiss cheese and bees. Since I already talked about some of the meaty farmers I know, the Swiss cheese is brought to you by dairy farmers like Annie & Jerry Link, Ellen Durrer, Brenda Hastings and Carla & Chris McLachlan
Committed to the environment, conscious of the needs of others and hardworking may not get a parody by Weird Al but with some creative thought…. we could change the lyrics to Lady Gaga’s “Born this Way” to be about some of the farmers I know. So see, there are lots of reasons to think about farmers when you hear the latest from Lady Gaga…. wonder what it will be next time and which farmers it will bring to mind!
Which musicians do you think have surprising farm connections?