Identity Politics: Gaga Channels Debbie Harry, Britney Spears, Joe Calderone…And Amy Winehouse?

Maybe Lady Gaga got the message that we were getting a little tired of the whole meat dress/plastic ovum/S&M nun thing.

‘Cause Mother Monster has been mixing things up a bit lately, stealing the thunder finding inspiration from divas besides Madonna and taking on some interesting new personae.

First was this image, depicting Gaga as her masculine alter ego, Joe Calderone, who will grace the cover of her next single, “You and I.” We dig—gender-bending has always been cool in rock (Just ask Patti Smith, Grace Jones and Annie Lennox.) We kinda like this look—reminds us of a young Tom Waits or Saturday Night Fever-era John Travolta. Attica! Attica!

Then we saw this interview Gaga did with New Wave goddess Debbie Harry for Harper’s Bazaar. As you might expect, Gaga’s “questions” to Harry are more like statements about herself—and for a relative newbie, she’s awfully comfortable putting herself on par as a woman who broke down doors and keeps rocking well into her 60s.

Debbie Harry: You’re an artist, and you’re feeling things and giving them your own interpretation; we embrace it, and the emotion touches us, and then we apply it to our lives. I mean, even jokingly, you know how women feel about their shoes [laughs]. It becomes very important.

Lady Gaga: It made me very, very emotional. It reminds me so much of my life, especially when you mention Brooklyn, because I live in Brooklyn. It reminds me of how sometimes I feel that moments in my life are interrupted because I’m so dedicated to my work. I often feel like my shoes are the only part of me that know what I’m doing all the time because they’re always with me. There’s this one pair of boots that I always wear, and sometimes when I’m so alone in my hotel room, I look at them and I think how they really are the only things in my life that know exactly what I’ve been through all day.

And here we thought it was all about your hair.