Adam...jacket by Skingraft...image by idoltourbenches
The American Idol tour kicked off in Portland this evening.
I was there.
Well, actually, I was home in my 'jammies, sick as hell with a flu of some kind.
But, thanks to the esthers of the internet universe, I was linked with rickey.org's cellcast, so I heard the concert on my laptop, along with 3800 other Twitter fans. The audio was a little crackly and broken up, at times, but I actually listened to the entire concert.
I then went to Idol Forums, signed on to their Adam Lambert topic and spent the next couple of hours talking about the concert with a few hundred fans online, while we listened to the distorted audio of the cellcast.
So, did I actually GO to the concert in Portland? Not physically.
But, for all intents and purposes, I was right there with my blue Glo-stik and my glam-eyes done to a T.
Most of you know by now that I'm a huge Adam Lambert fan, so it's not going to be any surprise to you when I tell you that my boy rocked the jeans off the full house in the arena in Portland tonight, dawg. Free from the restraints of the American Idol stage, free from the judges' criticisms and out from under the whole pageantry that makes up Idol, Adam took control of the stage and blew the doors off the place.
Adam...body by Lambert...image by idoltourbenches
This review by Brian Mansfield of USA Today says it all...
"Adam Lambert finished second?
You couldn't tell it from this crowd, which greets the explosive sounds and strobing lights with shrieks. Adam kicks off his set with Led Zeppelin's Whole Lotta Love, and the stage fills with smoke. He's wearing a blue-and-black metallic-looking studded jacket that comes down to his knees, along with a sleeveless black T-shirt and black pants. The crowd may have been dancing for Allison and Danny ...for Adam, they're screaming. Suddenly we've gone from the world of AC pop into a real rock show...
Second song is Muse's Starlight, and the six disco balls hanging above the stage turns the Rose Garden into a planetarium. It's Adam's typically impressive song choice...for the arrangement, imagine Erasure's Andy Bell fronting the Sisters of Mercy...and he sings it flawlessly, beautifully, slipping in and out of falsetto. (I wonder if this begins to approach what his album will sound like...you wouldn't hear me complaining if it did.) Matt's version of Hard to Handle was pretty cool, but this is the first of the new numbers I'd lay down cash money to hear again.
Low-level fog creeps in, as Adam takes a seat on a stool to sing the Tears for Fears Gary Jules song, Mad World. The crowd is still on its feet, and they've brought out their cameras...you could practically read in here, the flashes are so steady. Some people are singing along; most of them just look entranced.
The guitarist cranks out the opening chords to Slow Ride start, and the audience knows what's coming ...or, rather, who. Allison Iraheta walks on stage, and the place goes ballistic.
Now, he's doing the David Bowie medley he promised, which starts with Life on Mars (and the big red planet is behind him on the video screen). As he slides into Fame, the crowd shrieks again, but it's not for the song: Adam has shed his jacket, revealing the sleeveless T underneath.
He's obviously been working with JaQuel Knight on choreography, too; he's moving lithely across the stage in a way Idol viewers never saw. The third number, Let's Dance, assumes a pulsing, throbbing club rhythm under his command, barely resembling the pseudo-horn-band arrangement of Bowie's original.
He finishes, then descends on the center-stage lift."
I'm so proud of this man and the kind of person he is. It's magical to me the way he has become one of the most watchable rock stars-in-the-making that I've seen since Elvis and Michael Jackson. It's a funny thing...as one star departs, another is born. When Elvis passed, The Beatles were in full bloom. As they broke up, Michael Jackson was there to step up to the plate. With Michael's death recently, I feel that is prophetic somehow that it is now that Adam has exploded onto the stage of the music scene, sweeping us all up in his wake.
One leaves, as another one comes...this boy who fell, magically and mysteriously, to Earth...
Adam's backdrop for his David Bowie medley, including Life on Mars...image by idoltourbenches
"It's weird when you're all of a sudden thrust into the public spotlight. It's a hard road to navigate.
You have to protect certain parts of yourself and see how it's going to play out.
I really wanted people to identify with my entertainment before my personal life.
I wanted people to enjoy my performances and get on board.
Now that some people have, I feel more free to become personal.
I wear myself on my sleeve."
~ Adam, of course