Lisa Kudrow Says Her Throat Closed Up and She Forgot the Chords to 'Smelly Cat' During 'Friends' Reunion
By Paige Gawley
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Lisa Kudrow had to put in some work to become Phoebe Buffay again. The 57-year-old actress appears on Friday's episode of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and reveals how she prepared for HBO Max's recent Friendsreunion.
During the special, Kudrow blew fans away when she sang her character's most beloved song, "Smelly Cat," alongside Lady Gaga. The epic moment wasn't easy to pull off, though.
"That was great. I was really nervous when I first heard that," Kudrow says of learning that she'd be singing with Gaga. "Then I prepared. I realized I had to learn 'Smelly Cat' again. I tuned my guitar and realized I don't know the chords. But I Googled it! All the chords were there. Thank you, world, for posting the chords. So I learned it."
After relearning the chords to the song, Kudrow still had trouble performing it in the moment.
"And then, my throat closed. I was so panicked. I couldn't get anything out. I didn't know what was going to happen," she recalls. "But it worked out."
Despite Kudrow's nerves, the song went off without a hitch. After Kudrow and Gaga -- with the help of a gospel choir -- finished the tune, the singer praised the actress for starring as the quirky friend on the famed sitcom.
"Thank you so much for being the person for all of us on Friends that -- I don’t know if this is the right way to say it -- but the different one, or the one that was really herself," Gaga said during the special.
That moment, Kudrow shares on Ellen, was one she'll never forget.
"That really almost made me cry. I think I said, 'I think I'm gonna cry,' but I said it so softly. That blew me away," Kudrow says. "Also, coming from her, because my son was in grade school, all the kids were listening to Lady Gaga and her whole message was everyone be yourself, be you. That was amazing."