Singer says it was 'interesting'...
Holly Frith

11:04 13th January 2012

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Madonna has claimed that Lady Gaga copied her song 'Express Yourself'.

The singer said there was a lot of similarities between her own 1989 hit 'Express Yourself' and GaGa's 2011 single 'Born This Way'.

Speaking about the first time she heard GaGa's track, Madonna told The Daily Beast: "I thought, 'What a wonderful way to redo my song'. I mean, I recognised the chord changes. I thought it was… interesting."

Last year Lady Gaga's producer White Shadow slammed claims that the singer ripped off Madonna on 'Born This Way'.

The producer has said that Gaga did not copy Madonna's 1989 hit 'Express Yourself'.

''I think it was bulls*it to be honest. I guess there are a hundred songs that you could put a pitchshift and a BPM change and loop and make them sound like anything. In addition, there are five songs on the radio right now that have the exact same chords and progression.''

Lady Gaga - 'Born This Way':

Madonna - 'Express Yourself':

Madonna!: A Career In Pictures

  • Born Madonna Louise Veronica Ciccone on August 16, 1958 in Bay City, Michigan. Her mother, Madonna Louise, was of French Canadian descent, and her father, Silvio 'Tony' P. Ciccone was a first generation Italian-American whose parents were from Pacentro. She was the third of six children. Sadly her mother died of breast cancer when Madonna was just five-years old, her father then married their housekeeper. She has admitted in recent interviews that she was very hard on her stepmother.

  • Madonna attended Rochester Adams High School where she was a prolific and talented student, often earning straight A-grades. She was also a very active student and was part of the school cheerleading squad. The above photo originates from 1975 when Madonnna was 17-years-old.

  • After finishing high school with good grades, Madonna received a scholarship to study dance at Michigan University. This photo originates from her time there. Always striving for better things, on the advice of her ballet teacher Madonna left University for New York City to pursue a dance career. In a 2008 interview with the Daily Mirror, Madonna said: "It was the bravest thing I'd ever done."

  • Madonna lived in relative squalor in New York and held down a number of minimum wage jobs, including one at Dunkin' Doughnuts. She soon joined Alvin Ailey's 'Dance Troupe' in the city and earned a wage by modelling – some of the shots were nudes which have since surfaced in magazines and online. The above modelling picture dates from 1979.

  • Madonna travelled to Europe in 1979 with disco artist Patrick Hernandez as a backing dancer and singer. In Paris she met her soon to be boyfriend Dan Gilroy who taught her to play the guitar and drums which would prove vital for her later career. Back in New York Madonna joined his group the Breakfast club, before quitting in 1980. Later that year she formed the band Emmy (pictured) - Madonna's then nickname - with former boyfriend Stephen Bray.

  • Upon the demise of Emmy, Bray and Madonna continued working together writing and performing dance tracks that they performed on the New York club scene. Their demo recordings grabbed the attention of DJ Mark Kamins who gave it to Sire Records founder Seymour Stein. He loved the recordings and signed Madonna on a singles deal to his imprint, a subsidiary of Warner Bros. Her first release was 'Everybody' on October 6, 1982, which failed to break the Billboard Top 100.

  • Produced by Reggie Lucas, Madonna's eponymous debut album was released on July 23, 1983. The album was originally slated to be called 'Lucky Star', after the track of the same name, but this was dropped. The album spawned singles like 'Lucky Star' and Madonna's global breakthrough track 'Holiday'.

  • Madonna's style and the way she dressed was fast becoming highly influential to her growing number of fans. With bleached blonde hair, fishnets, cropped tops and array of hats she was a definitive female icon of the 1980s.

  • Released on November 12, 1984 and produced by the legendary Nile Rodgers with Madonna and Stephen Bray, Madonna's second album 'Like A Virgin' was and still is phenomenally successful. Containing smashes such as 'Material Girl', 'Into The Groove' and of course the album title track, it has sold 21million records worldwide to date – over 10million of those in America alone.

  • In 1985 Madonna moved into the world of film, appearing as a singer in Vision Quest and taking the lead acting role alongside Rosanna Arquette in Desperately Seeking Susan. The latter film featured 'Into The Groove' and its inclusion helped it to reach number one in the United Kingdom.

  • In 1985 Madonna embarked on her first major tour of the United States and Canada. Entitled The Virgin Tour, she hit the road alongside The Beastie Boys. Above is a photograph from the front of the tour programme.

  • Madonna married actor Sean Penn on Mailbu Beach, California in 1985. The marriage lasted just three years, during which time Madonna contributed the track 'Live To Tell' to a movie starring Penn called At Close Range. Penn hated the constant media attention and was known to attack paparazzi photographers.

  • Madonna's third album 'True Blue' hit the shelves on June 30, 1986. It set an unprecedented world record of reaching number one in a massive 28 countries upon its release. Album track 'Papa Don't Preach' caused controversy for its lyrical content, which of course helped record sales perfectly. The track was about a teenage girl who falls pregnant and tells her father she is going to keep her baby. Conservative parent and religious groups lambasted it.

  • After starring in the films Shanghai Surprise and Who's That Girl as well as the theatre production 'Goose and Tom-Tom', in 1987 Madonna announced the massive Who's That Girl Tour. The then current pope, John Paul II, urged Italian fans to boycott the tour. At this time she sported another iconic look – a peroxide blonde, Marilyn Monroe-esque appearance. It once again cemented her status as a style icon.

  • At the start of 1989 Madonna unveiled her new single 'Like A Prayer' – it was to be her most controversial moment yet and a defining career moment. The video featured burning crosses, stigmata and Madonna kissing a black Jesus. The Vatican slammed it for overtly linking eroticism with religion. In the light of the video, drinks company Pepsi revoked their sponsorship of Madonna.

  • Featuring a suitably raunchy front cover, Madonna's fourth studio album 'Like A Prayer' was released in March 1989. Critics marvelled at the record, with the Rolling Stone hailing it "as close to art as pop music gets" and many other publications showering it with five star reviews for its hyper-eclectic nature. As well as the title track, singles included 'Express Yourself', 'Cherish' and 'Father'.

  • In 1990, Madonna starred as 'Breathless' Mahoney in the movie Dick Tracy (pictured). Accompanying the picture, she released the soundtrack album 'I'm Breathless' which was directly inspired by the film and the time it was set. It gave birth to the singles 'Sooner of Later' and the massive smash 'Vogue'.

  • Later that year Madonna launched the controversial Blonde Ambition World Tour. It again courted controversy for its highly sexual nature - on one infamous occasion, during a performance of 'Like A Prayer' two male dancers felt Madonna's body while she pretended to masturbate. Once again Italian Catholics blasted the tour and called for a boycott. It also saw her unveil her legendary cone shaped bra.

  • November 1990 saw the release of her first greatest hits album 'The Immaculate Collection'. It featured two new singles, 'Rescue Me' and 'Justify My Love'. Co-written by Lenny Kravitz, the latter song featured a video directed by Jean-Baptiste Mondino which included nudity, simulated group sex and a bit of good old sadomasochism and bondage. It was banned by MTV.

  • In 1992 Madonna founded her own company Maverick - the deal with Time Warner was struck which earned the singer $60million. As well as holding rights to the music, it was a blanket company which covered publishing, television and merchandising. Her first Maverick release was the infamous book 'Sex'. It contained a collection of erotic images of Madonna as captured by Steven Meisel. It was instantly the ultimate coffee table book!

  • Erotica, Madonna's fifth studio album, was released in October 1992. Compared to her previous released it was a commercial flop, failing to reach number one in America and only selling 5million copies worldwide to date. It was a highly sexed up album featuring three songs of an explicit erotic nature. Sex and Madonna were now becoming synonymous.

  • Following more movie roles, in 1993 Madonna set out on The Girlie Show World Tour. Once again she managed to attract fervent media attention. She was flanked by half dressed dancers and took on the role of a dominatrix in one costume change. In Puerto Rico, she upset some locals by rubbing the nation's flag on her crotch during a show.

  • Madonna's next record 'Bedtime Stories' saw the light of day in October 1994. Just like Erotica it failed to reach the commercial heights of her other albums, having shifted 7million copies around the globe. Four singles were released from the album - 'Bedtime Story', 'Human Nature', 'Take A Bow' and 'Secret'.

  • In 1996, a year after Madonna released her ballads collection 'Something To Remember', Madonna made her defining acting role in the movie Evita. An adaptation of the West End show, Madonna took the lead role of Eva Peron and released an accompanying soundtrack. The single 'Don't Cry For Me Argentina' achieved notable commercial success while 'You Must Love Me' won an Oscar and Golden Globe award for 'Best Original Song From a Motion Picture.'

  • On October 14, 1996, Madonna gave birth to her daughter Lourdes to her then boyfriend, the fitness trainer Carlos Leon. Here they are pictured in 2004.

  • Directed by the genius that is Chris Cunningham, the director famous for his work with Bjork and Aphex Twin, the bleak video to Madonna's comeback single 'Frozen' in early 1998 was nothing short of a masterpiece. In jet-black hair, Madonna was once again reinvented for the hauntingly beautiful song.

  • After the disappointment of 'Erotica' and 'Bedtime Stories', Madonna came back reinvigorated with 'Ray of Light' in 1998. Produced by William Orbit, it had a dance edge which marked a new direction for the star. Just like David Bowie, she was learning to constantly evolve, adapt and change musical styles/image in order to stay at the top. Some critics hailed it as her most accomplished work yet.

  • On somewhat of a roll after the success of 'Ray of Light', Madonna appeared on the soundtrack to the Austin Powers movie The Spy Who Shagged Me in 1999 with the track 'Beautiful Stranger'. The track peaked at number two in the UK, but a disappointing 19 in America. The following year she covered the Don McLean song 'American Pie' for the movie in which she starred; The Next Big Thing.

  • In 1999 Madonna met British movie director Guy Ritchie through their mutual friends Sting and his wife Trudie Styler. They married in Scotland in December 2000. Their son Rocco was born in August of that year.

  • September 2000 saw the release of Madonna's eighth studio album Music. Once again she got an uber-cool dance producer onboard in the shape of Parisian star Mirwais and the resulting record was both a commercial and critical success. William Orbit also had some input on two of the tracks. Alongside the title track, hit singles came in the shape of 'Don't Tell Me' and 'What It Feels Like For A Girl'. To date the album has sold over 10million units.

  • Madonna's first global tour in eight years, 2001's Drowned World Tour, featured 47 sold out shows across Northern America and Europe. It amassed a massive $47million and was in the top five grossing tours of the year. Madonna once again proved she was a live force to be reckoned with. A second greatest hits album - GHV2 - was released in conjunction with the tour.

  • 2002 saw the release of Swept Away, a movie starring Madonna and directed by her husband Guy Ritchie. A shoddy plot, shoddy acting and shoddy directing made it one of the worst received films of the year. In fact, it was so bad it went straight to video in the UK. In the same year, Madonna recorded the James Bond theme 'Die Another Day' and starred in a play by David Williamson called Up For Grabs.

  • Madonna's ninth studio album, 2003's American Life, was her first purely concept album dealing with themes based on American society. Receiving largely negative reviews, it was a flop compared to Music and Ray of Light and has to date sold 4million copies; her lowest selling record yet. It was recorded with Mirwais, which made its commercial slump all the more surprising.

  • Grabbing the spotlight at the 2003 MTV Music Awards, Madonna kissed both Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera live on stage while Spears' ex Justin Timberlake looked on. It was a classic Madonna publicity stunt.

  • 2004 saw a massive lawsuit between Maverick and Time Warner over lost money. The dispute ended when Madonna's shares were purchased. That summer saw the start of the Re-Invention World Tour. It was even more successful than the Drowned World Tour, grossing a huge $125million and becoming the most lucrative tour globally of the year. Above is the promotional poster from the tour.

  • In 2005, Madonna showed her charitable side, first by recording a version of John Lennon's 'Imagine' for Tsunami Aid which raised money for those hit by the Indian Ocean earthquake on Boxing Day 2004. In the summer she performed at the Live 8 benefit concert in London, calling on world leaders to end poverty. She grabbed the headlines for swearing on live television.

  • Madonna teamed up with another producer du jour - Stuart Price - for her tenth album Confessions on a Dancefloor. A meld of pop and house music, it was led by the Abba sampling number one single 'Hung Up' and was a commercial (if not critical) triumph. Importantly it was a return to blanket popularity after American Life.

  • On the 2006 Confessions Tour, Madonna once again made a number of religious groups bitterly angry. Madonna arrived onstage during 'Live To Tell' on the tour on a crucifix with an accompanying crown of thorns. The Russian orthodox church called it sacrilege while the Catholics said it was a direct attack on their religion. Madonna responded: "My performance is neither anti-Christian, sacrilegious or blasphemous... it is my plea to the audience to encourage mankind to help one another and to see the world as a unified whole.”

  • In October 2006, Madonna travelled to the blighted African country of Malawi to help work on an orphanage. A week later she filed for the adoption of a one-year-old boy David Banda Mwale. It was alleged that the adoption was unlawful because adoptive parents need to reside in Malawi for a year before they can adopt. Others claimed that the boy's biological father thought his son was being fostered, not adopted. This was denied by Madonna.

  • Madonna performing at Live Earth at London's Wembley Stadium in the summer of 2007. Just like Live 8 two years earlier, Madonna's set was strewn with plenty of “fucks”, which caused many watching in the UK to complain to the television complaints commission Ofcom.

  • In October 2007, Madonna announced that she would be leaving Warner Bros. in early 2009 in favour of an all-encompassing deal with Live Nation. The unprecedented ten year deal is worth a massive £120million. No wonder she looks so happy.

  • Two months after the Live Nation deal was announced, she was one of five inductees into the prestigious Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The photo above was taken at the ceremony at the Waldorf-Astoria hotel in New York.

  • Madonna's debut movie as a director was the largely derided Filth and Wisdom. Filmed in 2007 and premièred at the Berlin film festival in 2008, it is a comedy, drama, musical romance about Ukranian immigrant in the UK and his various exploits to become a successful rock star. Even Gogol Bordello frontman Eugene Hutz, who played the lead AK, couldn't stop the film from crashing.

  • Madonna's eleventh studio album Hard Candy was released in April 2008. Produced by a modern-day dream team of Timbaland, The Neptunes and Justin Timberlake, the urban-pop record was a always going to be a blockbuster – despite its mixed reviews. It has already sold over 3million units globally.

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