Beatlemania is even more rampant than usual this week with John Lennon's 70th birthday looming on Saturday. Yoko Ono amplified anticipation this weekend when she headlined "We Are Plastic Ono Band" tribute shows Oct. 1-2 at the Orpheum Theater in Los Angeles, sharing the eclectic bill with Lady Gaga, Iggy Pop, the RZA, Perry Farrell, Sonic Youth's Kim Gordon and Thurston Moore, and others.
Gaga and Ono took the stage for a rendition of "It's Been Very Hard" which Gaga initiated with an a cappella ad-lib before starting in on the piano. The pop queen helms the piana, while Ono belts out avant garde notes and screeches her way through the over eight and a half minute clip. The two team up near the end of the song when they climbed to the top of Gaga's piano, laying beside each other and singing. As the lights go down, it looks almost as if the two are cuddling, showing that partnerships could show up in even the unlikeliest pairings.
Video: Lady Gaga and Yoko Ono, "It's Been Very Hard"
The pair also performed "The Sun Is Down from Ono's 2009 album "Between My Head and the Sky," and Gaga again took lead vocals. In her black Michael Jackson's "Rock With You"-era glitter onesie (with a sheer butt panel) and sparkle-stud headband, Gaga stutter-spoke through the song with Ono providing the back-up speech. As the song got more fervent, Gaga's mannerisms took a more disturbing air as she scrunched up her face and accented her singing with robotic Nicki Minaj-esque head twitching.
Video: Lady Gaga and Yoko Ono, "The Sun Is Down"
The appearance concluded with a chorus of "Give Peace a Chance," where each artist who participated in the tribute show wrote his or her own verse to the peace anthem. As to be expected, Gaga's verse spoke about the unfairness of the controversial "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy, while others took on the Tea Party and violence in modern society.
Video: Yoko Ono and All-Star Performance of "Give Peace a Chance"