Adam Lambert Week – March 1-7, 2015
QUOTE OF THE WEEK
“…the difference with QAL is that they perform with LOVE – it’s not just about doing the music to entertain themselves, or because they think they’re good at it, but it’s because they truly love what they’re doing and want to share it.” – Kym Smith
GETTING READY FOR WORLD DOMINATION…
WHAT HAS OUR BOY BEEN SMOKIN’?
SIGH…WE HAVE SUCH AN ADAM HANGOVER. WHAT ABOUT YOU?
And we wanted to share this fabulous Facebook post by Kym Smith (the classical singer who carried on that great tweet dialog in last week’s post):
QAL Sheffield – 27th Feb 2015
Going to the last night of the UK/Europe tour was rather like spending a final night with the perfect lover you know is emigrating the next day. It was astounding, poignant and painful, all at the same time.
There was a much more highly-charged atmosphere than in Birmingham. I was down on the floor again, so my view wasn’t the greatest as I’m not that tall, but could see most things via the giant screens. The Motorpoint Arena is a bit smaller than the Barclaycard Arena in Birmingham, but it was packed out. I’d talked to a couple of people on the tram who come all the way from Suffolk as a result of seeing the televised NYE concert. I told them they were in for a treat, so I hope they agreed with me by the end of the evening.
The place erupted from the opening chords of One Vision as the curtains billowed away. The guys were really ripping into the music and Brian was clearly having the time of his life as they cruised through SCC. Adam was at his saucy best in FBG and there were screams of delight from the women (and some of the men) as he twerked and flirted with the audience. We were also treated to a full-screen microphone lick during KQ for extra naughtiness. He was even doing a bit of flirting with Brian and giving him the “come on” looks
STL was also stunning, with even more high notes incorporated into it. It’s always been one of my favourite Queen songs, but the QAL version of it is just incomparable, and it’s almost, almost a different song now.
Adam’s homage to Freddie was greeted with delight and the first teary moment was LOML. Brian was clearly overcome – he spoke about how this had been the most enjoyable tour they’d ever done. Roger sang DOOL beautifully – the croakiness from a couple of nights previously was gone and there were a lot of teary eyes in the audience at the video montage of Queen in days gone by.
The audience were transfixed by Adam in Save Me and WWTLF – I could almost hear them holding their breath. It’s almost impossible to pick out the best bits from a set that was so immaculately put together, but Brian and Adam’s improvisation before IWIA was… organic. It takes special skill and rapport to do that in front of a live audience of thousands, and do it slightly different every time.
RGG dissolved into its usual audience frenzy when Adam went down into the crowd, but we were nearing the end too quickly. I’m sure heard a subtle change when Brian introduced Adam – for the first time, I don’t think he called him the “new guy”, but the audience went WILD for him.
Bo Rhap was immense, as usual, with huge cheers at the “Freddie” footage and the interchange between him and Adam. When WATC started, I think it had started to get to Adam that this was the last performance, and I saw on Twitter that there are pics of him in tears (which I haven’t seen yet, for reasons of sanity). He missed out a couple of lines and this was probably because he was too choked to get the notes out.
There were huge amounts of hugging at the end and I think all of the guys were really overcome (I’m tearing up just thinking about it).
All of the guys were stunning throughout – Adam’s voice, Brian’s guitar, Roger and the lovely Rufus on the drums and not forgetting Neil and Spike. This show was every bit as spectacular as Birmingham and all the other footage I’ve seen on YouTube. It was the Queen experience that I’ve known and loved for decades, but with something more.
As I’ve already spoken about on here, I’ve been involved with music since I was a teenager and I’ve seen and heard thousands of performers in classical music, rock, pop and a few other genres as well. But the difference with QAL is that they perform with LOVE – it’s not just about doing the music to entertain themselves, or because they think they’re good at it, but it’s because they truly love what they’re doing and want to share it.
There’s been loads of stuff on here in the last few weeks about how Adam has given Brian and Roger a new lease of life, and he truly has. I think the thing that made last night so emotionally charged is that we were all aware of the love that there is between them, and how much they have all treasured this experience.
And we have treasured it – I know I’ve already mentioned that I never thought I’d hear Queen’s music live again in such perfection. I think a lot of us are never going to be the same again (and I’ve tweeted copiously about this!). There are now thousands of us who are now fans of Adam’s as well as Queen’s and those of us who have been lucky enough to get to the live shows have been able to witness what an astonishing performer he is.
And of course, we now know that this isn’t the end of QAL – it’s the “pause” button. There is going to be Rock in Rio, and Brian has already acknowledged that the fans (us!!) are mad for more. There *is* space for the things that they all want to do as well, but it looks as though there may be opportunities for us to have more of the wonderful, life-changing experience that is QAL.
Oh dear, I’ve written a lot. Sorry chaps, I needed to emote as I’m smile emoticon and cry emoticonall at the same time. Just tell me if you want me to go away and write a blog instead…
And this too:
Kym Smith I think the thing for me is that Adam seriously has got one of the best voices I’ve ever heard. He’s got a massive range of tonal colour and a fabulous technique (I’ve written somes posts over on IDF about this if anyone’s interested in the technical details). My musical tastes are very wide-ranging; some classical musos get very snobbish and won’t listen to/appreciate anything outside the classical genre, which is narrow-minded imho. I just like music that says something to me, and it doesn’t matter what type of music that is. When you study music at college, you get exposed to over a thousand years’ worth of it, from the chants that monks sang in monasteries after the Norman Conquest, to stuff that sounds like skeletons having sex on a tin roof (and everything else in between). The thing that originally turned me on to Queen when I was a kid was the harmonies they could do – they were different and I liked the idea that these four hyperintelligent guys could make this fabulous music. I was heartbroken when Freddie died and I suppose it’s a measure of how tremendous his voice was that it’s taken two decades for someone like Adam to appear and really be able to sing just about *all* of their songs. And he has a truly “elastic” voice that can do many, many styles. Most of us that sing have to stick to a few types (I can do classical, some music theatre/cabaret and the occasional bit of pop – I’ve sung Annie Lennox songs in classical recitals to confuse the audience!). Adam seems to be able to change his voice to accommodate most music. OK, he physically wouldn’t be able to do grand opera like Verdi or Wagner because you need a voice that is colossal when unamplified to do that sort of stuff. Anyway, his high range is way outside a lot of the written operatic repertoire, so it would be a bit of a waste!…
Kym Smith Cameron Willson – I’ve listened to the song from Brigadoon, and considering he was only 23 at the time, it’s astonishing. You can hear that he’s a proper tenor leggiero, but there are NO BREAKS in his voice – it’s blended throughout. There’s a couple of possibilities for this; he might just be an incredibly lucky mofo who was born with a larynx that doesn’t move suddenly when he gets to a gear change (passagio) point – if anyone wants the technical details of how this works, let me know. The other one is that he’s worked extremely hard to get his voice even and blended throughout. This is the route that most of us have to take; when I first started voice lessons I had a couple of spectacular gear changes that had to be worked on, and you just have to keep doing the technical exercises until the muscle memory starts to work and your voice starts to blend. With the age he was at the time of the Brigadoon recording, he’s got a voice that was probably way ahead of a lot of the other guys he was doing music theatre with. Men’s voices break, and they have a “settling” period that often takes 2-3 years as you acclimatise to your new voice. If you hear a teen whose voice has just broken, it often sounds rough and gravelly and that’s because of the changes inside the larynx. However, for some men the voice breaks very gradually and it sort of “slides”. These people *tend* to have higher voices – my first husband is a singer, but he is a male alto/counter-tenor and his voice changed very gradually. I think this can also help keep the high notes in a voice, and this may also be a reason why Adam’s voice was so good so early. Also, he has a very light speaking voice – as soon as he speaks, you know he’s going to be a high tenor.
More from Kym’s blog My Badass Alter Ego
Finding an idol – or, how I tripped over Adam Lambert on New Year’s Eve… “Brian and Roger were clearly loving being back on stage. Just before the midnight fireworks, we were treated to the fireworks of The Show Must Go On, one of the songs that was written when Freddie was in the latter stages of his illness, and was probably never intended to be performed live. TSMGO is an exceptionally difficult song; it’s like an operatic aria and is killingly high for the male voice. Adam nailed it and I nearly wept. I didn’t think I would ever hear that song performed live so beautifully.”
Freddie vs. Adam – or Adam vs. Freddie? “I feel more than a bit sorry for the Adam haters, as they are missing out on a fabulous experience. Their old heroes have got a new lease of life; they have played this tour with smiles on their faces as they have found someone who can make their music live again. They clearly have a wonderful rapport with Adam and it’s obvious they adore him (and he them), which has made many an old Queenie shed a tear or two of joy.”
The Talent Show Circus. “For Adam, putting himself through AI worked – his natural talent and solid vocal technique mean that he has a truly “elastic” voice that can get round nearly anything. Also, he’s said in interview that he was not sure whether he was the right fit for AI and was of the view that he could use the experience to get more work elsewhere, so it was a win-win situation for him. I’m firmly of the opinion that the single biggest favour Simon Cowell did for Adam was organising the appearance with Queen in the final, as that was the trigger for the whole QAL adventure. As I said in another post, being the runner up made him the winner.”
MAYBE THESE WILL MAKE YOU FEEL BETTER
Look who’s back!
PRESS AND BLOG PICKS
Daily Mail – Why the show must go on: Brian May says he’s thrilled that Queen are reigning again – “It was the fans that insisted they came back, even without their front man. They started slowly but 2015, a year heralded by BBC1 televising their New Year’s Eve London concert, is already turning out to be very big for the band….”
OUT – Top 10: Who is the Most Eligible Bachelor of 2015? “For the second year in a row, Adam Lambert was voted the Most Eligible Bachelor with a landslide of votes from his loyal fans. Claymates tried to steal the top spot by bombarding the site with votes, but nothing could catch Lambert, who stayed steady with over 28% of the total votes.”
VIDEO AND AUDIO FAVS
The best moments of the Queen + Adam Lambert Tour 2015 Part 1. by Mayra Glambert
“Save Me” from Wembley
Queen + Adam Lambert – Somebody To Love (Live – Motorpoint Arena, Sheffield, UK, Feb 2015)
NEW BOOK COMING OUT!
(But we can always say we were the first.. and we weren’t self-published, so there!)
From American Idol To British Rock Royalty – The Amazing Story Of Adam Lambert “From American Idol To British Rock Royalty charts the amazing journey of this humble California kid and how he came to front one of the biggest British rock bands of all time, Queen. He has won great acclaim around the world after touring with Queen in 2012, and then in 2014 and 2015. Drummer Roger Taylor said that Lambert has “the best range I’ve ever heard” in a BBC interview in 2012.”
QUEEN FAN CHATTER
Sorry this is so long, but it’s SO satisfying to see how Adam has won so many over!