Before the March 10 release of her 13th studio album Rebel Heart, the Queen of Pop, 56, addressed her ongoing "feud" with Gaga, saying she only felt ill will against her on one occasion, and that was to preserve artistic integrity.
"I don't think she wants my crown," Madonna said of Taylor Kinney's fiancee, 28. "We live in a world where people like to pit women against each other. And this is why I love the idea of embracing other females who are doing what I'm doing…" (Indeed, Madonna has publicly praised her pop proteges, recently complimenting 1989 hitmaker Taylor Swift for writing "some really catchy pop songs.")
Still, Madonna owned up to lashing out against Gaga — and said it was for good reason. "The only time I ever criticized Lady Gaga was when I felt like she blatantly ripped off one of my songs," Madonna told the mag. "It's got nothing to do with 'she's taking my crown' or 'she's in some space of mine.' She has her thing. I do think she's a very talented singer and songwriter. It was just that one issue. And everybody's obviously running with it and turned it into a huge feud, which I think is really boring, quite frankly."
The incident occurred in January 2012, when Madonna (and many others) slammed Gaga's single "Born This Way" for its obvious similarities to her 1989 hit "Express Yourself." Several months later, Gaga retorted that Madonna's accusations were "a completely ridiculous thing to even question me about."
In the interim, the ladies have made peace, which Madonna reiterated to Rolling Stone in her latest interview. "And you know what? I don't care anymore," the "Joan of Arc" songstress said. "Here's the thing: one day everyone's going to shut up about it. You'll see! I have a plan."
The "Living for Love" hitmaker, who gave a rousing performance of her new single at the 2015 Grammys in early February, told the mag that lately, she's on a mission to call out ageism in celebrity culture.
"It's still the one area where you can totally discriminate against somebody," she complained to the music mag, "and talk s—. Because of their age. Only females, though. Not males. So in that respect we still live in a very sexist society."
Madonna, who looks stunning up-close on the Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott-shot Rolling Stone cover, slammed remarks made about older women as "degrading."
"No one would dare to say a degrading remark about being black or dare to say a degrading remark on Instagram about someone being gay," Madonna told Rolling Stone. "But my age — anybody and everybody would say something degrading to me. And I always think to myself, why is that accepted? What's the difference between that and racism, or any discrimination? They're judging me by my age. I don't understand."
She used her butt-baring moment on the Grammys red carpet as one illustration to prove her point. Her message essentially was: "This is what a 56-year-old ass looks like, motherf—ers!"
Madonna added that she was anything but average, as evidenced throughout her illustrious three-decade career. "If I have to be the person who opens the door for women to believe and understand and embrace the idea that they can be sexual and look good and be as relevant in their fifties or their sixties or whatever as they were in their twenties, then so be it," she noted.
Madonna's issue of Rolling Stone hits stands on Friday, Feb. 27.
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