This song by American recording artist Lady Gaga was premiered during her performance in England at Elton John's 12th annual White Tie and Tiara Ball on June 24, 2010. On her Twitter, the New York star described "You and I" as a "new song ... written in NY on the piano I grew up on." Gaga described the song to her audience as a bit of a "rock-and-roll tune." She went on to say that it will probably never be used as one of her singles, but the song is very dear to her heart.
Legendary Queen guitarist Brian May plays guitar on this track. "It's always been Gaga's dream to perform as Queen. If it wasn't for Queen, there would be no Gaga," a source told UK newspaper The Daily Mirror
. "This collaboration with Brian May means the world to her."
Lady Gaga famously took her name from a Queen song, "Radio Ga Ga
American Idol contestant Haley Reinhart performed the song on the contest a few weeks before the release of Born This Way. She'd been presented with the tune by in-house mentor Jimmy Iovine and sang it with Gaga's blessing.
The song was produced by the revered producer Robert "Mutt" Lange, whose resume dates back to classic '80s rock tracks such as AC/DC's "Back In Black
" and Def Leopard's "Love Bites
The song finds Gaga singing about a passionate love affair with a "Nebraska guy" whilst the lyric sheet features umlauts over every letter "u."
Gaga revealed in an interview with US Weekly that she finds it hard to perform this track as it is about her relationship with her on-and-off boyfriend, Luc Carl. The tune is about getting back together with a former love and Gaga penned the tune after getting back together with Carl, having previously split up with him. However, the singer broke up with him again shortly before the release of Born This Way and she admitted that she now gets upset when singing the tune. "I think when you write your own music you find ways to reinvent [the songs] emotionally through yourself and performance so that they are different every night and that song you know, sometimes it's about the guys and sometimes its about the fans," she said, before adding: "I get emotional each time I sing that song."
The video was shot in Springfield, Nebraska. Gaga explained the video's concept to Omaha radio station Channel 94.1: "The premise of the video is that I've walked all the way from New York City to Nebraska to get [my boyfriend] back. I'm walking with no luggage, it's just me and my ankles are kind of bleeding a little bit and there's grass stuck in my shoes and I've got this outfit on – it's real New York sort of clothing and I'm sprinting. And the [video is about the] idea that when you're away from someone you love, it's torture," she continued. "I knew I wanted the video to be about me sprinting back and walking hundreds of thousands of miles to get him back."
Gaga explained the song's meaning and how the video fits in with it during a Q&A with MTV News' Sway Calloway. "I wrote the song about this guy that I used to date," she revealed. "But the song is about going back to anyone or anything in your life that means something to you. Nebraska [the video's location] is the center of it all. For me, it was all about capturing the true spirit of song, which is when you're in love, you'll be willing to walk and do the craziest and most inconvenient things you can possibly imagine. The video is quite complex in the way that the story is told, and it's meant to be slightly linear and slightly twisted and confusing, which is the way that love is."
The wedding dress Gaga wears in the clip belongs to her mom. "It's so funny, because when I was younger, I hated my mother's wedding dress," Gaga admitted to Sway. "I would always say, 'Mom, why don't you have a long train and a tiara? I don't understand.' ... I remember I was about 13 or 14 when I fell in love with my mother's wedding dress. I asked her if I could use it in the video, because the love my mother and father have shared for almost 30 years now is what I hope to have someday."
The ice-cream truck in the beginning of the video is about very specific and painful childhood memories for the singer. "I had a lot of really intense experiences when I was younger, some of which I have shared with you and some of which I haven't. The ice-cream truck represents all of the destruction of my youth at a very young time in my life," Gaga explained to Sway. "So while walking down the road to find love, the memories of the destruction of my youth sort of get in the way. That's how I wanted to open the video, because I think it really sets up the rest of the story. It allows you to imagine you yourself are not just one person; you're so many. That person has so many stories and memories to draw from, and they all affect your journey profusely. I'm battered quite brutally at the beginning of the video, but at the end, I'm not battered; I'm a bit strange. It's not meant t to be an answer video; it's meant to be a profuse number of the question."
The black and white artwork for the single features a male character created by Lady Gaga named Jo Calderone. Gaga's male alter ego first appeared in June 2011 in a series of photos by UK artist Nick Knight and also turns up in the song's music video.
Gaga's co-star in the video is the actor and model Taylor Kinney, who is best known for portraying Mason Lockwood in The Vampire Diaries TV series. The pair started dating for real after filming the clip. The singer recalled to US talk show host Ellen DeGeneres how Kinney surprised her with a kiss and that was the start of their romance. "We were in the middle of this scene and I remember that he kissed me and it wasn't scripted for him to kiss me and I was sort of like was um, you know, was that real or was that fake? And he didn't really say anything and that was fine by me and we kept filming."
Gaga is mixing up her personal pronouns again (see "Bad Romance
"). She sings, "I'd rather die, without you and I." In the case of this sentence, the pronouns are objects (which are the receivers of the subject's action). You
is correct because it can function as a subject or object depending on the context, but I
is never used in the objective case. The lyric should use the objective pronoun me: "I'd rather die, Without you and me."
Celine Dion got it right with her song "You And I
," because the pronouns are performing the action: "You and I were meant to fly."