Lady Gaga is a masterful performer and artist, let's get that out of the way. Her tribute to David Bowie at the Grammy awards was impressive, yes, but it was missing something vital, sincerity. The performance seemed to be more about whether or not Gaga could pull off the multiple costume changes, and lastly, Bowie's music.
Lorde, a rising artist, and friend of David Bowie, brought to the table what Gaga was missing. There were no costume changes or fancy graphics, it was just her and Bowie's band, singing one song. It wasn't a perverted tirade of impersonation. Lorde was joyful, yet respectful in her tribute.Not to mention, her performance of "Life On Mars" sort of came with Bowie's stamp of approval. It is known that Bowie admired her, saying that she was the future of music. (Her tribute is at the 8:57 mark of the video below)
Perhaps, it is just the difference in temperament between the American and British cultures. Perhaps we still have something to learn from our old mother country, who knows. As a music fan and historian of sorts, I think the British people had a better idea of who David Bowie was. He wasn't Ziggy Stardust or The Thin White Duke, he was David Bowie, a shape shifting artist and musician who single-handedly changed the worlds of both music and culture.