By Sterling Wong
By now, it’s really not that surprising to find Lady Gaga making the Top 10 of some list magazines always come up with: She was the top artist in Time’s 100 Most Influential People in the World in 2010, No. 1 in Forbes annual list of the 100 most powerful celebrities in the world, and, once again, No. 1 in DoSomething’s “Celebs Gone Good” list for her strong advocacy for social causes. But the latest list that Gaga makes is a little more unexpected: The 25-year-old is No. 9 in Vanity Fair’s 2011 New Establishment list.
According to a press release from the esteemed magazine, the New Establishment list represents an “innovative new breed of buccaneering visionaries, engineering prodigies and entrepreneurs, who quite often sport hoodies, floppy hair and backpacks.” Gaga sporting a hoodie and a backpack? Wash your mouth out! Actually, Gaga joins the much-more-likely-to-be-wearing-hoodies billionaires Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook and Jack Dorsey of Twitter on the list because of her budding entrepreneurial efforts in the world of technology.
Yes, somehow despite her busy schedule of being an international pop superstar and fashion icon, Gaga manages to squeeze some time in her day to do business. Gaga the businesswoman (Boss Monster?) has no less than four concurrent business deals: She’s an investor in Blackplane, a social network for celebrities, creative director of Polaroid, and has partnered with Zynga to create a “GagaVille” videogame and with Monster to produce her own line of to-die-for headphones that were showcased in the “Bad Romance” video. To sum up: Gaga rules us all.
The star is not the only musician who made this list. At No. 21 is Jay-Z. Mr. Carter is an extremely savvy, old-school mogul who has dipped his hands just about everything, from entertainment retail and real estate to nightlife and sports (he is a part-owner of New Jersey Nets). Jay also has his own investment company. Seriously, how did Jay find time to join Kanye on stage at the VMA’s?
Joining Gaga and Jay-Z at No. 50 is Justin Timberlake. I know what you’re thinking: Not another thing to distract JT from music! Indeed, besides trying to make it onto the Hollywood A-list, Justin’s also venturing into tech entrepreneurship, investing in tech startups like Stipple, Dekko, and in a truth-is-stranger-than-fiction development, the “Social Network” star also bought a $35 million stake in MySpace in June. It’s all well and good that you are branching out and exploring new challengers, Justin, but seriously, can we get that follow-up to FutureSexLoveSounds already?
What do you think of the business exploits of Gaga, Jay-Z and Justin Timberlake? Who else should be included in the list? Tell us in the comments section below or on Twitter!