"The Edge of Glory" is a song written by Lady Gaga, Fernando Garibay and DJ White Shadow for Born This Way. On May 5th, 2011, radio station 96.1 KISS announced that they would receive and play "The Edge of Glory" on Monday, the 9th. It is the first promotional single to be released from the album as part of the iTunes Countdown for Born This Way. The song premiered on the radio one hour before the release on iTunes. Radios played a shortened version (4:20) sent by Interscope. The song was registered on BMI as simply "Edge of Glory" on May 17, 2011.
On May 11th, Gaga announced the song to be the official third single from the album after it topped download charts worldwide shortly after it's release on iTunes. The song was sent to US radios on May 17th. The song was also featured on a Google Chrome commercial featuring Lady Gaga that debuted on Saturday, May 22, 2011, during Saturday Night Live featuring Gaga. On May 24th, it was announced that Gaga would perform the song along with saxophonist, Clarence Clemons of the E Street Band, on the American Idol season finale.
Gaga revealed during the Musicians@Google Presents: Google Goes Gaga interview that the song is about "your last moment on earth, the moment of truth, the moment before you leave earth." In the same interview Gaga stated that she wrote "The Edge of Glory" after the death of her grandfather. The song title was revealed by Stephen G. Hill through a tweet.
- "And the Lady GaGa...aural energy that had my speakers gasping for water afterwards. The joint "The Edge of Glory"...phenomenal!" 7:48 PM Jan 24th via web
Prior to the release of the song title, Gaga tweeted the following in 2010.
- "I'm on the edge of glory, and I'm counting on a moment of truth. I'm on the edge of glory, and I'm counting on a moment with you." 2:52 PM Sep 25th via Twitter for BlackBerry®
During the interview Musicians@Google Present: Google Goes Gaga she explains that “one of the songs on the album that is truly one of my favorites, it's called 'Edge of Glory' and it's kind of a sad story. Sorry to be a downer. But my grandpa died about five months ago, and my dad and I were going to say goodbye to him at the hospice, and I got out a big thing of agave tequila and my dad sat next to me at the piano and we started to doing shots back and fourth, and I wrote 'Edge of Glory' on the piano and my dad and I cried. The song's about your last moment on Earth, the moment of truth, the edge of glory is that moment right before you leave the Earth. So that song can be played on the piano, but it's actually set to this giant, huge, techno rock, Springsteen-esque dance beat. I actually had Clarence Clemons from the E Street Band come in and play saxophone on it. It's fucking beautiful.”
Gaga stated during her interview with NME that “[She's] perpetually unhappy with what [she creates]. Even though [she] might tell you that 'Edge Of Glory' is a pop masterpiece, when it's all said and finished there will be things [she dreads], and every time [she listens] to it [she'll] hear them.”
During her interview with E! News, Gaga said that
- "The song is about, how when I watch my grandpa die, I believe that he looks my grandmother and I realize that he was a champion in the life and that's when he's able to go to the edge of glory that represents being on the edge of that glorious moment."
Garibay discussed the song with The Hollywood Reporter stating "[Lady Gaga] and her family are massive Bruce Springsteen and the E-Street Band fans. She wanted sax on "Edge of Glory" and asked, "Do you think we can get Clarence Clemons?" I was like, "Dude, you're Lady Gaga, you can get anybody you want. So we set it up, and it was amazing, because this was right after her grandpa passed away and it was truly moving. Clarence came into the small studio in a wheelchair, we played him this musical break in the song, he found his pocket and just started soloing in that section. We kept the first take."
During her performance of the song on Howard Stern, Lady Gaga explained that the song as follows:
- "It's about knowing in your heart you may never reach that glorious moment until you die, so live life on the edge half way between heaven and hell, and let's all dance in the middle in purgatory."
During an interview with Oprah Winfrey, /gaga said that she wrote "The Edge of Glory" on the eve of her grandfathers' passing, which means the song was written on September 24, 2010.
"The Edge of Glory" is an upbeat song of dance-pop and electro-pop tendencies. It is notable for the use of synthesizers executed in a manner highly influenced by smooth jazz, as well as the inclusion of a saxophone solo by Clarence Clemons.
Released: July 8, 2011
Photogaphy: Nick Knight
|1.||"The Edge of Glory" (Radio Edit)||4:20|
|2.||"The Edge of Glory" (Cahill Club Remix)||7:27|
Released: July 12, 2011
Photogaphy: Nick Knight
|1.||"The Edge of Glory" (Sultan & Ned Shepard Remix)||6:33|
|2.||"The Edge of Glory" (Funkagenda Remix)||7:52|
|3.||"The Edge of Glory" (Bare Noize Remix)||3:47|
|4.||"The Edge of Glory" (Porter Robinson Remix)||6:39|
|5.||"The Edge of Glory" (Cahill Club Remix)||7:26|
|6.||"The Edge of Glory" (Foster The People Remix)||6:10|
|Jun 15||Little Monsters Video Awards||Paris|
|Jul 3||Taichung Arena||Taichung City|
|Jul 7||Marina Bay Sands||Marina Bay|
|Jul 11||Nevermind Nightclub||Sydney|
|Jul 13||Gaga Live at Sydney Monster Hall|
|Oct 10||William J. Clinton Foundation||Hollywood Bowl, CA|
|Dec 3||KIIS FM's Jingle Ball||Los Angeles, CA|
|Dec 9||Z100's Jingle Ball||New York, NY|
|Jan 22||White House||Washington D.C.|
|May 15||BBC Radio 1 Big Weekend||BBC|
|May 21||Saturday Night Live||NBC|
|May 25||American Idol||Fox|
|May 27||Good Morning America||ABC|
|Jun 9||Germany's Next Topmodel||Pro 7|
|Jun 14||The X Factor||M6|
|Jun 15||Le Grand Journal||Canal Plus|
|Jun 17||Paul O'Grady Live||ITV|
|Jun 19||MuchMusic Video Awards||MuchMusic|
|Jun 25||MTV Video Music Awards Japan||MTV|
|Jun 28||Taratata||France 4|
|Jun 29||SMAPxSMAP||Fuji TV|
|Jun 30||Japan Music Lovers||Nihon TV|
|Jul 11||A Current Affair||Nine Network|
|Sep 28||So You Think You Can Dance||Fox|
|Jimmy Kimmel Live!||ABC|
|Oct 30||F1 Rocks After Party|
|Nov 24||A Very Gaga Thanksgiving||ABC|
|The Born This Way Ball||All Dates||98|
|Total of performances||98|
On June 23, 2011, "The Edge of Glory" reached platinum status in the United States where it had sold over 1 million copies since its release.
The film was shot in New York City on May 8th with Laurieann Gibson as director. Within hours of the release of her new single "Edge of Glory" on May 9th, fans began uploading videos on YouTube, making the song their own by dancing to it, singing it and playing it on all kinds of instruments. Lady Gaga then posted a message on her website asking for more videos to be used in the film project. Fans responded within minutes and uploaded hundreds more videos. Back in the editing room, in real time as fan videos streamed in, editors were putting them into the film. The film was completed on May 18th in time to air during Lady Gaga's performance on the season finale of Saturday Night Live, and to also live on the web.
On May 17, 2011, Laurieann Gibson revealed to Rap-UpTV that the music video of Gaga's third single to Born This Way, would be filmed very soon. She also gave a hint - "We'll be very fishy..." On May 22, 2011, Gaga tweeted to a fan that she will begin shooting "The Edge" video in one week and that she has already written the treatments for it. On May 27, E! News managed to get a casting call notice for the video. The casting notice asks for a "Puerto Rican or Dominican type badass" who "must be willing to kiss Lady Gaga", "Couture Doctors" who will wear smocks and black gloves", a "male or female on-air reporter", and a group of military men to hold M16 rifles."
The music video was shot May 28-29, 2011. Originally, Joseph Kahn had been hired to direct the music video for the three days shoot. After rumors of an argument between Gaga and Kahn, Laurieann Gibson said on Twitter that there had been issues on the set and Kahn was no longer involved in the production. Interscope Records confirmed that Gaga then became the director of the clip along with the Haus of Gaga as collaborative directors. The footage shot on the second day featuring Gaga with Clarence Clemons were the only footage used to make the music video which was released on June 16 So You Think You Can Dance. During a press conference in Singapore, Gaga's revealed what happened on the set: "I had this whole elaborate setup for ‘The Edge of Glory’, but once I got on that fire escape in that one outfit, I realized that it was time to just have a moment of acknowledgement for myself as a 25-year-old who has been working so hard from the bottom up my whole life."
It begins with Lady Gaga slowly appearing from behind a building on a deserted street corner. When the first verse of the song begins, Gaga emerges from the window of an apartment onto the fire escape while smoke begins to billow out of the building. The video is mostly comprised of interchanging shots of Gaga dancing and singing on the street, on the fire escape, and on the steps in front of the apartment building with Clarence Clemons. Near the end of the video, after Clemons's saxophone solo, Gaga crouches in front of the building's steps and kisses the sidewalk. The video concludes with Gaga reentering the window into her smokey apartment.
During her Inside the Outside interview, Gaga said that she missed New York and that after the releases of the previous two projects, she felt so empty that the only way that she would know New York again is to "fuck herself up and lick the streets," which is expressed in the scene where she kisses the sidewalk.
Filmed on a Brownstone set just off New York Street on the Metropolitan Sets backlot and a tenement fire escape behind the gas station on Courthouse Square at Universal Studios Hollywood.
- Lady Gaga: outfits by Versace (Fall/Winter 1992)
- Universal Studios Hollywood
Original conceptEditThree stills from the set of the original music video concept were confirmed by Khan's on-set editor, Chancler Haynes.
- The album credits erroneously credited Gene Grimaldi as the mastering engineer (at Oasis Mastering) for this track.
- Programming — Fernando Garibay
- Keyboard — Lady Gaga, Fernando Garibay
- Guitars — Kareem "Jesus" Devlin-Byrne
- Saxophone — Clarence Clemons
- Recording — Dave Russell at The Living Room Studios (October 16, 2010, Oslo )
- Assistant at The Living Room Studios — George Tanderø, Ken Knapstad
- Mixing — Dave Russel at Germano Studios (New York )
- Assistant — Kenta Yonesaka, Kevin Porter, Al Carlson
- Additional engineering — Bill Malina
- Mastering engineer — Chris Gehringer at Sterling Sound (New York )
- [BMI] Sony/ATV Songs, LLC/ House of Gaga Publishing / GloJoe Music Inc.
- [BMI] Sony/ATV Songs LLC / Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp./ Garibay Music Publishing.
All rights on behalf of itself and Garibay Music Publishing administered by WB Music Corp.
- Maxwell and Carter Publishing, LLC
- Location — Universal Studios Hollywood Backlot - New York Street
- Creative direction — Lady Gaga
- Fashion direction — Nicola Formichetti
- Make up — Val Garland
- Hair — Frederic Aspiras
- Stylists — Anna Trevelyan, Brandon Maxwell
- Nails — Aya Fukuda
- Saxophone — Clarence Clemons
- Editor — Jarrett Fijal (Bonch)