Since his debut on American Idol, Adam Lambert has been a fixture on this site, and we’ve followed his life and career, through the peaks and valleys (mostly peaks, thankfully). Through it all, he’s kept his optimism and fiery inner strength, which is part of the reason why we fell in love with him.
Adam took a few minutes out of his schedule to talk to us about the Queen tour, his advocacy, and especially the AT&T Live Proud Campaign.
The Live Proud Campaign is a sweeps involving inspirational memes. Five winners will be selected for a trip to NYC for a private event with Adam. It ends on August 10th, so it’s not too late to enter for a once-in-a-lifetime chance to meet the man himself.
TBL: Thank you so much for taking a few minutes for our readers.
Adam Lambert: Of course!
TBL: I wanted to start right off talking about the Live Proud Campaign. It ends in a few days, so it’s not too late for people to participate. I know a lot of our readers are familiar with it, but for those who aren’t, can you explain what it is?
AL: Yeah! it’s a really cool empowerment campaign that encourages people to be who they are with pride, and to do it boldly. And what I love about it is it’s also a creative exercise. We’re asking people to come up with memes that express how they “live proud.” So I like that it it’s creative, and people can be very playful with it and have a good time with it. They can upload a picture and come up with a saying or slogan, and give their individuality a little … meme. We’re going to pick some winners and do a private event in New York, which should be really cool.
TBL: I’ve seen some of the memes. Some of them are so creative.
AL: Yes! And it’s cool too, because it’s so timely. The whole idea of what a meme is, it’s kind of this new thing. It feels very “right now.”
TBL: What would your meme be?
AL: Oh Lord, don’t ask me that! I would have to put some thought into it. I haven’t thought about it yet. That’s a good question!
One Of Adam’s Memes
TBL: I know you must get inundated with charity requests, but you’re only one man, so you have to pick and choose. Why was LiveProud so important to you?
AL: I worked with the organization last year and we had a really good time. We did a little bit of a different project last year. We did a PSA, and they were so sweet, and we did an event at the end of that for another set of contest winners. The event was really awesome, it was a live set with my band, and I just liked the way they organized everything. And I like that they’re a mainstream organization that has taken the time to do something for the LGBT community. I think it’s a really cool move.
TBL: How do you pick and choose? Is it usually something instinctive? Do you know right away?
AL: Yeah, I think so. I always want to have something going in that realm, I think it’s really important. I’m a celebrity because of what I do, my talent, I think, that’s first and foremost, but as an out celebrity I have this great opportunity to try and influence people, or open their minds, or give them strength, in both the gay community or the mainstream straight community. I just think it’s exciting to be able to be in that position, and so I always try to have something going on, and yeah, I think if it feels right, I go with that one.
TBL: Do you think enough LGBT artists do enough advocacy work for LGBT issues?
AL:I think so. I think we need more LGBT artists, that’s what I’m hoping we’ve moved towards, and it looks like things are finally getting to the point where someone who is LGB or T is able to become a recognizable artist, and that’s a big step forward, so hopefully we’re more and more a part of the entertainment industry.
TBL: You were the first gay male artist to have a #1 album, and since then two other gay male artists, Frank Ocean and Sam Smith, have come close. Do you think it’s getting easier?
AL: I do! I do think it’s getting easier. I think people’s attitudes are becoming more liberal. I think people are understanding LGBT more, and it’s becoming more visible, and that makes people more comfortable. So it’s becoming, or I hope it’s becoming, more of an afterthought. I don’t think a piece of music is actually that specific, at least most of the big pop songs that I’ve heard. They’re non-specific, everyone can relate to them, which is the whole point, that’s why they’re popular. If I’m listening to an Adele song, which is written by a woman for a man, I can relate to it also, and so can a straight woman, and a straight men, so why can’t a gay artist have that same kind of universal appeal?
TBL: You’re a huge presence on our site. Every week we have a feature called Hump Day With Adam Lambert …
AL: I think I’ve seen that!
TBL: We take a look back at what’s happened with you during the previous week. It helps our readers get through their Wednesdays
AL: Thank you so much for the support. I appreciate it.
TBL: Absolutely! But they would kill me if I didn’t ask a few questions about the Queen tour.
AL: Yeah! Go for it.
Adam Lambert and Brian May
(Photo – Neal Preston)
TBL: Now that the North American leg of the tour is over, well, first of all, have you had the chance to relax?
AL: Yeah, I have. I am relaxing and checking in with friends, and getting a little chunk of summer. My little summer fix. But it was an amazing tour, that leg of it, I had so much fun, and Brian [May]and Roger [Taylor] are incredible, and we get along so well and have grown so close. It’s a really good crew. We have great musicians on stage, and great people helping us get everything together. I’ve had a wonderful time. You really couldn’t get a more perfect experience.
TBL: Was there anything about the tour that surprised you?
AL: I think seeing the diversity in the audience is always a big surprise to me, and makes me feel great. I saw women, men, young, old, white, black, it was very diverse, and that was one of the most gratifying things. It means you’re connecting with everybody.
TBL: Was there a difference in the demographic between the Queen tour and your tour?
AL: I saw a lot of my core audience at the Queen shows, which always brings a smile to my face. They’re usually the ones wearing festive outfits and really getting into it. On top of that I saw a lot of diehard Queen fans. You get a lot of older men who were rock and roll fans since they were in their high school years. So you get a lot of that demographic too, which is really interesting because I may not be someone they might be interested in if it had not been for this Queen concert. But from what I’m hearing there’s definitely a stamp of approval, so maybe they’re new fans.
TBL: Yes, I’ve heard the Freddie fans reacted very well
AL: That’s really nice to hear. I’m so honored to be able to sing the songs that he and the band wrote, and try to bring some of the original flavor, the original energy that was brought that I can see when I watch videos and concert footage. My goal is just to do that, to remind people of what the essence of Queen is.
(Photo – Neal Preston)
TBL: Was there one song in particular you loved doing, or the crowd loved hearing?
AL: The thing that’s so crazy about their set list, and the catalog of songs that Queen has created is that they’re all over the place. They’re so diverse, they have so many genres they borrow from, different sounds and flavors, so it’s really case by case. There are days when I get a kick out of one song, and then another night where I’m like “this one felt really good tonight,” but I really love them all.
TBL: When do you head Down Under?
AL: Well, first we’re going to Asia. We leave on Monday and we’re doing Korea and two shows in Japan. Then after that we go down to Australia.
TBL: Is it going to be a different set list?
AL: I think it’s probably going to stay mostly the same
Will we ever see Starchild again?
(Photo – Getty)
TBL: Is there any chance at all you’re going to make one more appearance on Glee
AL: I have no idea! Technically they were “hey, you’re going to have five episodes” and we said great, cool, and then I filmed the five episodes and had an awesome doing it, so I don’t know.
TBL: We can only hope! Finally, I know you can’t say anything about the new album, but … can you say anything?
AL: Ha! Well, it’s gonna be good, I think! I’ve been working on it a lot earlier this year, and I’m going to continue working on it after the Australian leg of this tour. But it’s gonna be great! I think people will really be into it.
TBL: Is there an ETA?
AL: I honestly don’t know. It has to be finished first, and the Queen tour got extended, and that has definitely shifted the timeline a bit.
TBL: Thank you so much Adam! I know our readers will love hearing from you.
AL: Yeah! Thank you.