Do What U Want (3:37)

Cover of NRJ Extravadance 2014

From NRJ Extravadance 2014 and 2 other releases

This was initially made available as a promotional single from Lady Gaga’s ARTPOP album. Upon its release, the song received acclaim from music critics and topped the American iTunes highest selling songs list within five hours. Such was the positive response, that it was released as the second single instead of the planned “Venus.”

The song features R Kelly, and Gaga was pleased to have Chicago’s R&B mastermind on the tune. “Can you believe that R. Kelly is on my album? He sounds so amazing and the song is so great,” Gaga said during an interview on Live 101.5. “It’s an R&B record. I did a lot of genre tripping on this album.”

A half minute snippet of the song was featured in a Best Buy commercial for Beats by Dre headphones in the US.

The song finds the two singers taking on their critics. Gaga also used lines from the song to tackle her detractors in a series of tweets. One missive was addressed to those who referenced her failure to outdo Katy Perry on the charts when they dropped their singles “Applause” and “Roar” on the same day. “APPLAUSE didn’t DEBUT AT #1! KATY IS BETTER THAN HER! #UWontUseMyMind I write for the music not the charts,” she tweeted.

Gaga told the story behind this song during a listening party at Berlin’s famed Berghain club. “I’ve been living in Chicago and spending a lot of time there, and that’s where R. Kelly hails from,” she explained. “I was working on ARTPOP and I wrote [‘Do What U Want’] on tour. It was about my obsession with the way people view me. I have always been an R.

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