Lady Gaga

Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Bud Light

Just a few hours before the release of her fifth studio album, Lady Gaga brought her career full circle with a show at a bar she once sang at when the city knew her as Stefani Germanotta. 

Clad in a sheer body suit with Bud Light's vintage logo emblazoned across her chest, the 30-year-old Grammy winner took the stage in New York City's West Village to pay homage to her start as an up-and-comer in the Big Apple. 

"I've been playing here since I was fifteen years old," she told the excited packed crowd. "This is where I started—and I truly cannot believe that you guys moved the grand piano for me. That has never been moved off this stage before as long as I've known its existence, so thank you."

Lady Gaga

Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Bud Light

The entire evening felt like a nostalgic tribute to Gaga's roots, from the Bud Light logo she was wearing—"the logo I used to wear back in the day"—to a performance of her new track "Joanne," which she dedicated to her father Joe Germanotta standing proudly in the audience. The song and the album are both named in reverence of Gaga's late aunt who passed away from Lupus at 19 years old. 

"She was a victim of sexual assault who was so traumatized by her experience that it flared up her existing disease," she explained to the audience. "She died very quickly after that. This tragedy stayed with my family a very long time."

Lady Gaga

Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Bud Light

Free of the elaborate costumes or intricate choreography synonymous with her earlier records, Gaga focused on the raw emotion behind her fresh melodies, playing the keyboard and the guitar as she described her childhood in an Italian-American blue collar family or her dear friend Sonja Durham, who is battling Stage 4 cancer and was standing in the front row Thursday night. 

"It's in her brain and in her lungs and in her breasts," Gaga said of the cancer. "She's in such good spirits and she's so beautiful." The songstress explained how she and their other friends would call each other to hang out and cry without Sonja seeing. "We just wanted to be strong for you always," she told her friend. Just like that, "Grigio Girls" was born. Gaga hopes it will work as an anthem for love, compassion and healing. "People are suffering and they need to know that you care," she reminded. 

Robert De Niro


After performing six of her new tracks, including the upbeat "A-YO" and slow and steady "Million Reasons," Gaga headed outside to perform "Angel Down," her tribute to Trayvon Martin. Fans who had figured out the secret Bud Light dive bar location lined the streets, waiting patiently for a sight of Mother Monster. They got one when Gaga appeared perched on the balcony of the bar with her band in tow for a midnight serenade just as the album dropped. 

The concert attracted famous attendees from all areas of the industry, from Broad City'Ilana Glazer to Oscar winner Robert DeNiro

Mark Ronson, who co-wrote most of the songs on Joanne, hopped on stage to play the guitar for a few of the setlist selections, including "Just Another Day." The musician thanked the famed producer for helping her bring the album to fruition as she had always wanted to collaborate with him. "I was right," she quipped. "I like being right."

Just like that, Mother Monster is back. 

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