Happy Birthday, Lady Gaga: Her 29 Best Performances, Pt. Two (The Deep Cuts)

Gaga's Best: Part One
See 15 more incredible Gaga performances.

Happy birthday, Lady Gaga! Today, Mother Monster turns 29, and we continue our tribute to her with 14 more of her best, most jaw-dropping performances.

Yesterday, we shared 15 of our favorite iconic Gaga performances. Today, we turn our focus to some of Gaga’s lesser-known and/or overlooked live moments. Below, you’ll find 14 incredible live performances of non-singles, unreleased songs, covers, and more.


We apologize for the quality of some of the videos. Unfortunately, when it comes to this kind of thing, you have to take what’s available. Despite the less-than-HD-quality of some of these videos, Gaga’s performances shine through and prove that she is, and has always been, a hugely talented musician.

And now, without further delay…


Gaga has spent much of the last year proving to the masses that she can, you know, really sing. The thing is, her talent been apparent from the start. This acoustic version of “Paparazzi” in 2009 is proof:

Earlier this year, Gaga performed “I Wish” at a Stevie Wonder tribute show and completely rocked the house:

“Fooled Me Again, Honest Eyes” may be Gaga’s greatest unreleased song. She performed it on a radio show in 2009, and, for a while, that was all we ever heard of it (minus a small excerpt in her The Fame mini-movie). A leaked studio version eventually made it online, but this live performance of this song is an utterly divine artifact from her on-the-cusp-of-fame self:

Before, during, and after the release of Born This Way, Gaga was everywhere. One of her most underrated performances of this era is the “Sheiße”/”Born This Way”/”The Edge of Glory” medley she performed on Germany’s Next Top Model. It is, as far as we can recall, her only televised performance of “Sheiße,” the single-that-should-have-been. Plus, the guillotines are awesome:

The best part about Gaga covering Coldplay’s then-ubiquitous hit, “Viva La Vida,” was that even though she forgot half the words (and rewrote the other half), she still managed to kill it:

“Venus” is the best song on ARTPOP. Its chorus rivals that of “Bad Romance.” It should have been a single, and, in fact, it was supposed to be. In the end, that never happened. However, her performance of this fan-favorite during her ARTRAVE tour was a showstopper:

Before an audience that included President Barack Obama, Gaga covered John Lennon’s “Imagine” and turned the song into a passionate plea for gay marriage equality:

Like “Fooled Me Again, Honest Eyes,” “Future Love” is one of those perfect Gaga songs that never made it onto an album. Too bad, because her performance of the spaced-out piano jam in 2009 (in her infamous bubble dress, at her infamous bubble piano) was pure magic:

Years before Gaga released her first jazz album with Tony Bennett, she performed a cover of the jazz standard “Orange Colored Sky” at BBC Radio One’s Big Weekend. It’s hard to decide what’s better: her incredible vocals or the shout-out to Prince William and Kate Middleton. Watch:

Before the release of ARTPOP, Gaga performed nearly half of her as-yet-unheard album at iTunes Festival in the summer of 2013. One of the songs, “I Wanna Be With You,” eventually became “Dope,” but let us remember the song’s fan-adoration origins:

Gaga played “Princess Die” during The Born This Way Ball and insinuated it could appear on her next album. In the end, she did not include a finished version on ARTPOP, but at least we have this gorgeous live moment:

“Living on the Radio” is another song that didn’t make the final ARTPOP cut, and you’ll be sad about that after you watch this:

Born This Way’s “Bloody Mary” could have served as Gaga’s American Horror Story audition tape. She performed the creepy, plunky song during The Born This Way Ball, and, with its moving catwalks and futuristic helmets, it was a stunning highlight of her set:

Gaga closed out her epic set on Good Morning America in 2010 with a long, rain-soaked performance of The Fame Monster’s “Teeth.” The performance is, in every way, perfect, but it reaches new heights at the end, when Gaga is screaming and rolling around on the wet stage. Iconic:

BONUS PERFORMANCES (Because it is actually impossible to choose just 29 Gaga performances):

If you missed the first half of our Gaga birthday feature, check it out here.

Happy birthday, Gaga! Cheers to you on your 29th!