Lady Gaga

Lady Gaga has probably discovered by now that when it comes to “The Fame” you have to take the bitter with the sweet. In this case, the bitter comes in the form of a $30 million lawsuit filed by producer/ex-boyfriend Rob Fusari. Fusari, who co-wrote the hit “Paparazzi,” claims he was not fully compensated for his contributions to Gaga’s success, which include coming up with the “Telephone” singer’s name and musical direction, and helping her secure a record deal, according to the suit.

Gaga and the producer met in 2006 after an acquaintance introduced the then “guidette” to Fusari, thinking she might be a fit for the all-girl rock band he was trying to put together, according to the lawsuit. Fusari says that in the following months, the pair shared “close emotional quarters” as romantic partners. He also claims to have played an integral role in the star’s success, eventually negotiating a contract that entitles him to twenty percent of merchandising revenue, as well as royalties and other earnings. As Stefani Germanotta evolved into Lady Gaga, her romantic relationship with Fusari was on its way downhill. By January 2007 the couple split. In May of that same year, Gaga signed a deal with Interscope. The label released her first album, “The Fame,” in August 2008 and the rest is history.

Fusari offers a simplified explanation for the dispute. “All business is personal. When those personal relationships evolve into romantic entanglements, any corresponding business relationship usually follows the same trajectory so that when one crashes they all burn. That is what happened here,” the introduction to Fusari’s suit reads.

Written by Shaira Brereton

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