Lady Gaga is honoring her late aunt Joanne with the title of her new album, set to be released Oct. 21.
The project is an ode to her father’s sister Joanne, who passed away at 19 after a battle with lupus in 1974.
Gaga — whose middle name is also Joanne — opened up about the LP and her aunt during an interview with Beats 1 on Thursday (Sept. 15), explaining that the title track is the project’s “heart and soul.”
Featuring collaborations with Mark Ronson, Father John Misty, and Hillary Lindsey, among others, the album defines a new phase in Gaga’s career. “This was a new step for me as an artist,” she explained. “I think mostly because I felt so embraced by contemporary boys in the business who are real kind of music nerds.”
Although it has a release date, Joanne isn’t finished just yet. Gaga promises that the album is set to be done in the next 48 hours and it may include 11 songs, along with three additional bonus cuts on the deluxe version.
So far, Gaga has already unleashed “Perfect Illusion,” the album’s lead single.
A “Perfect Illusion” video is set to arrive soon. According to the pop powerhouse, the LP’s physical copy will also feature artifacts from Joanne and her family.
“It’s so personal,” she explained. “Every single song…is extremely autobiographical.”
This is Gaga’s first solo release since 2013’s ARTP