There has been a lot of chatter about how Adam is “more popular” in other parts of the world, that he is “accepted more” in other countries and he is not “appreciated” in his own country. Some have even suggested that he move out of the USA. Fans have been begging for a TRESPASSING tour, but as far as we can see, his schedule doesn’t include any dates in the USA.
I’m going to be brave and just ask the question.
Is Adam Lambert too gay for mainstream USA?
On one hand, I LOVE Adam Lambert like my child, UNCONDITIONALLY.
So he could drop his pants, squat down on the stage and take a ….let me think about that for a second. LOL
Even if I were outraged by something he did on or off stage, I would try to understand why he did it, make excuses for him and give him credit for at least not being boring. And I would still LOVE him. I figure there are about 10,000 people like me who will buy whatever he puts out, have supported him since day one and will support him no matter what. But Adam can’t count on (just said “count on” on TV) just this core group of obsessed Glamberts if he wants career longevity. So what is the problem and what, if anything, can Adam (and his people) do about it?
Is Adam promoting his sexuality or is the media focusing on it?
As soon as American Idol season 8 was over, Adam had THE opportunity of a rock star’s life, a cover story in Rolling Stone. This was his opportunity to talk about the music and art he wanted to create. And what does he start with? “I’m gay!” Now there was speculation on Idol and some photos had surfaced, but I believe most people really didn’t care. The last thing I was worried about while listening to that stellar voice was whether he was doing any dudes. At the time of the interview Adam said he didn’t want to be a spokesperson or activist for the LGBT community. He just wanted to be a singer. And I believe in my psychic head that Adam thought that by making this declaration, that it would put the gay subject to rest.
Adam went on tour with American Idol. It was exciting because Adam changed his performance each time. Glamberts began to attend as many of these shows as possible, and those who were unable to go settled for some craptastic cell phone videos so we could discuss on fan sites what made each show special. But the interviews? Well, I guess they are obligated to actually mention what a fantastic performer he is, but there were (and still are) always the gay questions.
The night before the release of his first album, Adam has THE prime spot on live network TV. He gets to close the American Music Awards. This was his debut for the USA, for America to witness this man’s voice LIVE, to hear what a masterful voice he has, what a great performer he is and to give us a taste of the artist he wanted to become. Now based on the set and the dancers and the song, it is assumed that Adam wanted to portray himself as a sexy ROCK GOD. I probably don’t need to tell the rest of the story but Adam did something GROUNDBREAKING for network TV. He kissed a dude. And the press coverage? I think a few of the news sources picked up on the gay thing.
FOR YOUR ENTERTAINMENT was released the next day. Look at the cover! OMG, he’s wearing more makeup than most girls. But damn he looks prettier than most girls too. LOL The cover was supposed to be ridiculous but to the average shopper the cover didn’t scream “BUY ME TO HEAR AN AWESOME VOICE” but “THIS IS THE GAY GUY FROM IDOL.” Then there was talk of men not wanting to be seen walking up to the cashier with it. So when the album reviews came out they had to discuss what a fantastic voice Adam had and the wide variety of music. But of course they had to discuss the cover portrait and any possible gay references.
Adam breaks new ground again by headlining his own tour. And there he was at the top of the stairs dressed in a purple fringed coat with fur collar, lace crotch leather pants, a top hat, bare feet (with a perfect pedicure) and a ton of makeup and glitter. If that wasn’t gay enough, on most nights Adam treated the audience to some hot action with Tommy. So when the GLAM NATION TOUR rolled into town, the press covered his singing along with his gay costumes and gay stage antics.
And that is just Adam the entertainer. In the years since the Rolling Stone cover Adam has chosen to be more vocal about gay rights, gay issues and LGBT charities. Then there’s Sauli, Adam’s totally hot, “openly Finnish” boyfriend. They live together, go out together and walk the red carpets together. Who can blame the press for taking so many pictures? They are both gorgeous. So who is to blame for the focus on Adam’s sexuality?
Would Adam get more radio play or sell more albums if he performed like he did on American Idol or if he chose a different music genre?
Adam Lambert is not just a faceless voice on a recording or one of the chorus boys in a musical. When he auditioned and was “cast” on American Idol, he became a “package” with a back story. And for as much as they promote these reality shows as a competition, they are carefully cast. Adam was “cast” as “The Rocker”. Adam chose Idol because it was a platform to get his music out there. But that platform also has fans wanting to know his favorite flavor of ice cream as though it had anything to do with his voice and artistry. Should Adam try to focus more on his voice?
It took a little too long, but Adam made the album he wanted to make. TRESPASSING is a detour from “The Rocker” because it is electro-pop, dance, something-or-other. Although it is loved by the Glamberts (who got to debut at #1) and it received plenty of critical acclaim, sales are far less than expected. Should Adam return to ROCK or try a different genre?
Adam has admitted that he was on his “best behavior” on Idol. We got a glimpse of what he was really like when the voting was over and he sang with KISS. Maybe Idol should have shown Adam performing with the Zodiac Show for his back story instead of the cute little boy who was in musical theater and liked to play dress up. Adam has said that Idol let him do what he wanted and contestants are supposed to perform in a way that shows what type of artist they want to be. So I don’t think you can blame some of America for wanting that Adam back. America must have loved him because he got the whole way to the finale and he is still known as one of the best contestants ever. Should Adam return to being on his best behavior?
Adam will always be gay and will probably always act “gay.” This goes back to Adam’s upbringing in Southern California. He had parents who encouraged him to be himself, and when he had too much energy and didn’t excel in sports, they put him in theater. So even though Adam felt “different” in school, he always had a set of friends in the theater. So when Adam came out, it was no surprise to anyone in his sphere of influence. In an ideal world every child in every home, every city, state and country would have such a supportive and accepting environment. Here is my psychic feeling again. When Adam went out into fly over country here in the USA, he was surprised by the level of homophobia. Again I go back to Rolling Stone where he said, “It should be no surprise that I am gay”, and he said he was surprised at the number of people who were surprised. While I’m at it, let me say how much I dislike the word “homophobic” as I don’t suspect that the average American is afraid of gays. While we may have that uncle in our family that never married, other than gays being portrayed on TV, many of us are not exposed to gay lifestyles and behaviors. So I am proposing the word “homo-naivety.” Do you remember Randy Travis being taken aback by Adam’s nail polish? Is Adam seen as a novelty act or a freak show?
Moving forward, what would you like see Adam do? I would love to hear from obsessed fans, casual fans and even non-fans or former fans.
Adam is now working on studio album #3 and needs to find the perfect balance between being himself and creating a product that will sell enough to maintain whatever lifestyle he wants for himself. Here is an interesting blog by Seth Godin. I get Seth’s daily message in my email and this one was very timely as we Glamberts have been waiting for that “moment” when Adam is launched into super-stardom. But what could Adam do to make this happen?
Maybe next year he can sing the National Anthem or performs at half-time for the Super Bowl.
Here are some FUN suggestions that I think could help Adam gain acceptance in the USA.
1. Make a Christmas album. (Not gonna happen)
2. Do a duet with Randy Travis. LOL
3. Tour with Queen. Is it just me who wants this?
4. Host Saturday Night Live. Musical guest too?
5. Be a judge on American Ido. There is still a chance at least in my psychic outlook
6. Star as a straight man in “50 Shades of Gray.” Remember the DETAILS photos?
7. Launch his own line of makeup or clothing. He’s very creative
8. Host his own TV variety show. OMG seeing him on TV every week
9. Go back to musical theater. Just so we can witness the nude scene in HAIR
10. Ignore the hate and just SING. Especially the National Anthem at the Super Bowl
By making news with his sexuality and over the top performances, Adam brings attention to important issues. He’s made a lot of people open their eyes. But not everyone is going to open their eyes and like what they see. With each outrageous thing Adam does, he runs the risk of losing some fans. But if Adam keeps chipping away his edges to fit into the round hole of mainstream America, he won’t be himself and he won’t be an artist. I’m hoping that as we are exposed to more out and proud behavior, we will begin to understand and accept our fellow human beings.
Besides, he may not want to change. Once out-of-the-box and out-of–the-closet, it’s hard, if not impossible, to go back in, even with a straight jacket.
Is Adam Lambert too gay for mainstream USA?
I HOPE NOT.
Where Is Adam Lambert?
Here is his schedule for February and March:
2/17 Seoul, S. Korea
2/19 Tokyo, Japan
2/20 Tokyo, Japan
2/21 Tokyo, Japan
2/23 Kanazawa, Japan
2/25 Nagoya, Japan
2/26 Osaka, Japan
3/01 Manila, Philippines
3/03 Shanghai, China
3/05 Hong Kong, China
3/10 Jakarta, Indonesia
3/15 Minsk, Belarus
3/16 Moscow, Russia
3/18 Kiev, Ukraine
3/20 St. Petersburg, Russia
3/22 Helsinki, Finland
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