My interpretation of G.U.Y.
So it might seem premature to have already analyzed a few lines of lyric, but the duality of the acronym can’t be ignored—nor do I want to put off my thoughts for later.
Love me, love me/ Please retreat (tentative)/ Let me be the girl under you that makes you cry/ I wanna be that G.U.Y.
G.U.Y. is about empowering women to be the agents of sexualization and to reverse the roles of male dominance and female submission. Let me be the girl under you that makes you cry. While men have historically had the social norm of ‘popping a girl’s cherry,’ ‘de-virginizing’ or ‘de-flowering’ a women of her virginity, a women isn’t seen as having that same power. G.U.Y. is a statement that a woman can have just as much sexual prowess and be in control of a man’s sexuality, as much as the patriarchy has asserted it’s oppression and dominance over women’s sexuality. It’s apparent in the way she phrases her position: that she’s the GIRL UNDER YOU, the G.U.Y., and embodying what is typically seen as the masculine role, rather than the feminine role, but which alludes to the futility and meaninglessness of those gender boundaries.
Some might argue that whatever I’ve just said is reading into this a bit too much (some of us just like to read), but you have to understand that it’s the minor oddities that trigger an analysis in Gaga’s work. If you think about it, her lyrics can be quite superficial or cliche at times, but if she sings, let me be the girl under you that makes you cry, you have to ponder, why the fuck does she want to make the man she’s fucking cry? And additionally, the male/female binary in the acronym G.U.Y. is not coincidental.
Whenever people rant about how so and so is never analyzed, or that so and so had implicit meanings in his/her new track and yet nobody bothered to look into it, you have to realize that Gaga proclaimed herself to be an artist and demanded people to deconstruct her work. It certainly doesn’t negate whatever meanings other artists have begun to infuse into their work, but Gaga, from the very beginning has layered her work with artistic expression, so that even if she doesn’t implement it consciously, her devoted audience will now create something for her.
The Fame was incredibly superficial and entertaining for the sake of alluring the public, and there was little if at all any implications to her music. The Fame Monster was an extremely personal record that had meanings, but they were fairly accessible and explicit in its themes (fear of death, fear of love, fear of alcohol, etc.). Born This Way was the album with the strongest underlying messages (Scheiße, Americano, Marry The Night, Judas), but also the most misunderstood. It was inaccessible in its imagery, sound, and lyricism, and because of that, it was even more difficult to get at the core of the album’s true meaning. Even Born This Way, the most literal and emphatic pop song, became obscured by an argument of nature versus nurture (whether people were born/become gay, or born/become disabled, or born/become whatever). The track is about being destined to be who you are, and regardless of the way you were actually born, you were born/destined to be the best person you can be, and to overcome the adversities that become a part of the trajectory of your life. You were born to be brave. You were born this way. But this is an old rant that has its post already.
ARTPOP now feels like a rebirth of old sounds, new sounds, and an incendiary amalgamation of everything she’s done and wants to pursue—sonically, lyrically, and visually. With what she’s released so far ARTPOP is shaping up to be a truly diverse sound, and a return to perfect pop artistry for Gaga. One second I’m a Koons, then suddenly the Koons is me.