OFFSTAGE: Little Big Town One Ups Lady Gaga

(CMT Offstage keeps a 24/7 watch on everything that’s happening with country music artists behind the scenes and out of the spotlight.)

Lady Gaga may have tried her hand at country a few weeks ago. But she will never, ever be this country. This is how you serve up “Born This Way” country-style — with harmony, upright bass, some hand clapping, a little twang and a hell of a lot of banjo. It makes me think that if I’d never heard of Lady Gaga, and Little Big Town released this freak anthem of a song to country radio, I would dig it immediately. I’d see past the bizarre message that I get from Gaga and take it as more of an empowering self-love song. Little Big Town recorded it as part of their Scattered, Smothered & Covered series where they do impromptu takes on songs from artists who aren’t in the country box. When they did Bruno Mars’ “Grenade” with mandolin, I secretly wished they’d released a collection of these country covers on an album. I’m still secretly wishing for that.