May 29, 2012 8:41am PT by Erin Carlson
Madonna Covers Lady Gaga's 'Born This Way' (Video)
Pop Queen Feud Alert: Madonna unexpectedly covered Lady Gaga's "Born This Way" during rehearsals for her concert in Tel Aviv, fueling speculation as to whether it was a calculated jab to exert diva domination or an homage to a rival.
We'll go with the former.
Earlier this year, Madonna -- a mistress of media manipulation -- addressed similarities between the Lady Gaga single and her own "Express Yourself" in an interview with ABC News, saying: "I thought, this is a wonderful way to redo my song. I mean, I recognized the chord changes. I thought it was ... interesting."
Gaga, who's acknowledged Madonna's influence on her music and provocative persona, did not take the rip-off talk lightly.
"I'm a songwriter. I've written loads of music. Why would I try to put out a song and think I'm getting one over on everybody? That's retarded," she told the music news website NME last year, adding: "What a completely ridiculous thing to even question me about. ... If you put the songs next to each other, side by side, the only similarities are the chord progression. It's the same one that's been in disco music for the last 50 years."
Perhaps Madonna is having some fun by messing with fans -- and the press -- by taking on a Gaga song following the rapid rise and fall of MDNA, her latest studio effort, which marked the biggest album sales drop of all time after hitting No. 1 in its first week.
Ironically, the 86.7 percent sales decline surpassed the record set by Gaga's Born This Way album, when it fell 84.27 percent in its second week.
Watch Madonna's "Born This Way" cover below.