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Adam Lambert Wows the AMAs

Updated on November 25, 2009

An Adam bomb detonated at the Nokia Theater in Los Angeles on Sunday night, and audience members at the American Music Awards will never be the same. "Wow!", was the word, and Adam Lambert was the object of everyone's affliction.

Ready or not, someone let Adam out of the box and he came out swinging. He also made good on a promise to his fans for a hot, sexy, and racy performance. At least they were warned. The others had mixed reactions to things like the "boy oh boy, a boy just kissed a boy" thing, the simulated oral sex-capade, and the "I think I'll take my bitch out for a walk" maneuver.

Some like it hot, and others like to call ABC and complain about what they just saw. And what did they see? It all depends on who you ask. Some saw inappropriate movements, raunchy lyrics, and offensive behavior. Others were just shocked out of their minds and didn't know what they saw. Poor things. And then there's those who saw a man on a fierce mission to take you on a three minute ride through his sexual underworld, and show you how nice being naughty can be.

One song, one performance. And all this?

Granted, it is best to hide your youngsters and anyone with a weak heart when Mr. Lambert does a prime time show. He's not aiming at them, anyway. He's aiming for an audience that will get it. Get him.

And he gets that not everyone will.

In fact, one of the few people not concerned with all of this controversy is Adam Lambert. Or if he is, he isn't letting on. Perhaps he has something that the average, run of the mill synthesized one-hit-wonders don't have; the keys to success. Variety, talent, diversity, and yes, controversy. And since art is in the eye of the beholder, it will be left open to many different interpretations. Good, bad, ugly, sad, and even a flat denial of the fact that it's art at all. One thing to keep in mind though, is that artists seldom shock you without a plan. It's usually to get you to think, to talk, to debate, or to change the way you feel about something.

Get it?

The A.M.As, incidentally, are not unfamiliar with performances that beg a little attention. Just ask Lady Gaga, Madonna, Prince, Michael Jackson, r.i.p., and a few others who started their careers with these types of "oh my God, their career is over now" performances. Some of the most talented, influencial, and successful performers of our time have found themselves at the wrong end of the Associated Press headlines the next morning - if there is such a thing as the wrong end of press.

ABC thinks there is. They censored his AMA performance for West Coast viewers, and canceled Lambert's November 25th promotional appearance on Good Morning America.CBS quickly picked him up and added him to their roster for the same day on The Early Show.

Ironically, Adam will find, to the chagrin of his detractors, that his numbers will probably go up. As a rule, we are fascinated with that which we consider to be taboo, outrageous, or forbidden. Some condemn it, some offer free lip service, and some are drawn to it like a moth to the flame.He may have alienated some, but he has also drawn attention from potential moths who would not have otherwise considered his musical flame.

While we're on the subject of his music, let's consider the vast, diverse, selection of tracks on the new C.D. For Your Entertainment. Lambert took a gamble and diversified his song portfolio. In the stock market, that's considered prudent. On your first C.D., it's risky business. Why? Because you're not establishing a definitive sound, or a distinguishing style. The stock holders want to know what they're getting. They want to label it. Is it a coincidence that recording artists belong to something called a record label? Perhaps, but in true Lambert form, Adam has taken the road less traveled. He's refusing to give himself a label, and his label has enough faith in his talent to go along for the ride.

Whether it pays off or not will be revealed in next week's episode of "Payoff or Sendoff".

Don't look for it on ABC

Give me your opinion

Will Adam Lambert's performance on the AMAs help or hurt his career?

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    • jennifer maurer profile imageAUTHOR

      Jennifer Maurer 

      8 years ago from Chicago, IL

      Thank you stolen...appreciate the nice comment. love the comment from Adam too, lol

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Jennifer...Another spot on review...LOVED IT! I will share your link with others on Adam Official.

      To quote Adam, "if sexy scares you, don't listen to my music!" LOL

    • profile image

      Adam B 

      8 years ago

      Rockey, If you google or youtube Jim Gillete from the band Nitro you will find a singer who has twice the range and pipes as Adam one really knows who he was and turned out to be a commercial flop. My point is, just because you can technically hit a lot of notes and have a large range...doesn't make you a great singer.

      I have commented on Adam before and given him credit on his range and vocals, they are completely higher than mine. I admittedly cannot hit a lot of notes that he can and I am alright with that fact. On that same note...Elvis could not hit most of Adam's notes as well yet Elvis is head and sholders above Adam in the great singers category.

      And for that WindyJocelyn who thinks I am a homophobic...stop it. I wrote in my comment that it didn't bother me that he did the kiss and all that other stuff on stage. I personally wasn't offended and I am not offended by homosexuality. I love the band Queen, I think Freddie was one of the few absolute great lead vocalists ever and one of my favorite bands (up until they recently broke up) was The Darkness who is fronted by Justin Hawkins who is also gay. Also Justin penned a song for Adam Lambert on his new album (unfortunately). I can't really take your comment and jabs at me seriously because I "thinks" you can't write properly...sorry.

      Jennifer, I am sorry I had to comment on those comments directed at me; no matter how hard I try sometimes to let things like that gets the better of me.

    • jennifer maurer profile imageAUTHOR

      Jennifer Maurer 

      8 years ago from Chicago, IL

      Sa Toya

      Thank you for your comments, and welcome to hubpages. I think you'll find this to be a great place to be! If I can help in any way, please let me know.

    • Sa Toya profile image

      Sa Toya 

      8 years ago from England

      I love Adam always have- it was a bit too much though and unessecasry! the flipping off to the camera bit and felatio simulation.

      I get the self expession and what not but it was too much, whether he was aiming at older audiences and those who get him- is no excuse- I get him but I did not want to see that.

      I wasn't offended or shocked, I'm a 22 year old open minded young woman with tons of opinions. I just didn't see the need for it all.

      I also do not see it as a means of promoting gay rights.

      Even if it was a straight woman or man- I would feel the same- a little too much for live national tv.

      He's getting the publicity he needs and kudos to him for that. I just don't get why the big hullabaloo- he did it, we saw it, we all commented on it- yet the world seems to want to keep the issue alive.

      The only issue I have other than it just wasn't the time or place is the fact that ABC are fine to cancel him only to have him replaced by Chris Brown- mixed message and a half there!

      Btw, I'm very new to hubpages and enjoy your hubs- good times all round.

    • profile image

      Julie B 

      8 years ago

      LOVEAMAADAM, you bring up an excellent question. Why do people bother to comment on Adam if they hate him so much? It's because he's like an itch you just have to scratch, a phenomenom you can't ignore, he gets inside your head and you cannot get him out until you put your "pen to paper". And even then, you're hooked & you'll look for more things to comment on. Since you're a fan, you know exactly what I'm talking about. Glad you are with us!!!!!

    • ethel smith profile image

      Eileen Kersey 

      8 years ago from Kingston-Upon-Hull

      I do not get the problem. If viewers are unhappy they just switch off surely. I am rather biased though as I love Adam Lambert. He is a great performer

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      ADAM B.

      I think you dont remember how many years Daughtry get need to are who he his after the american Idol so he dont get a star when he finish his competitions.

      BTW, the homophobian like you have on your head make me thinks you dont know what about you talking and without do respect. Adam Lambert have the voice, the all package to became a huge Stars and by the way he's already a big star! If certain peoples dont like gay man's and dont like what Adam make's on the AMA, Im sorry but Im a mother and I dont do like more, the Rhyanna dancers with each big gun on the stage it is VIOLENT JEEZ! I think the gun's are more big thinks than saw a guy to kiss another guy's but all the certain people who hate his performance dont understand he just act all his lyrics on his song. You dont care about what Emenm sang and tell in the songs to rap 17 persons OH NO it is not the Violences!! Wow so its better than saw a guy kiss another guy's?? woww, BTW how many peoples first tell it is not oky to kiss another guy's on stage and to make the face of another dancer on his crutch because he dont respect the childrens hey come one like he tell his not a babysitter, that his the job to Parents to get his childrens on the bed at the late hour jeezz 11:00 pm..When my childrens are little and loves there singners, so I check first and I record and if it is not for there age I just dont give the cassette tape. Thats it thats all. And you are very jealous to Adam because many peoples like him and tell him he likes to Elvis Presley so YES for me I was a little much younger that Elvis but Adam's look like him very very much...Adam are just a little bit more beautiful than Elvis physicaly and musicley Adam have the most amazing voice I never heard..So plz if you are a singner let us to heard you with you suposly good voice humm yark! for me about you. sorry.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Thanks for this post - I enjoyed and agreed with it. Seriously, it would take more than a dodgy vocal at the AMAs to put me off Adam. His AMA antics are just the sort of thing I want from my favourite, exciting performer. Just a shame the vocal was off in parts. But not off enough to stop some people who hadnt heard him before from buying his album, anecdotal evidence suggests this. But to Adam B - you are right about other stars who performed outrageously on these type of shows, Madonna etc, being criticised in the press - but they weren't censored for other more sensitive regions. People are not too sensitive about watching girls kiss each other, but for a man to do this, we must hide it. Who are these moral police, what planet are they from? Adam was asked about the censoring thing and that is why he says there is a double standard. I didn't see him crying anything, just answering questions when they were put to him about his OTT performance and the fact they were censored.

      What I really don't get since I became a fan of Adam and joined what appears to be cyber warfare over him, I, in all my years if I ever saw any performer that I didnt like for some reason, have never been bothered to take the time to write to anyone about it or comment on their performance in blogs or youtube. If I didnt like it - it is gone from my head, will remember to not buy their cd or whatever and avoid when I know that person may be on TV etc. What is it about Adam that gets people reading articles, watching him on youtube and then leaving negative comments. I am not saying people shouldnt have an opinion and share it, but I personally don't look up people I know I don't like and leave comment. I spend my time looking up what I like. I like Adam :). I don't get it, any thoughts anyone?

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Adam B, if you don't think Adam is a great singer then you haven't listened to him sing. Listen to songs on his album liked Soaked, Loaded Smile, or Broken Open. Take a look at his old YouTube videos like Brigadoon, The Prayer, Is Anybody Listening, and anything from Upright Cabaret, especially Come Home and Dust in the Wind. I have pretty much listened to everything Adam has sung pre and post-Idol and this AMA performance was an anomaly, and you as a singer should know better than to judge by one performance. I will take the word of all the producers, songwriters, singers and others in the music business who sing Adam's praises over your opinion any day. Also, DDD music forum rates Adam as #2 Most Technically Skilled Rock Vocalists

    • jennifer maurer profile imageAUTHOR

      Jennifer Maurer 

      8 years ago from Chicago, IL

      Adam B

      First, thanks for the comment. I love a healthy debate between writers. You certainly make some valid points, and you are not the only one to share that opinion. I do think that Freddie, Elton, Bowie and Madonna were all capable of outrageous behavior on stage, on TV, on MTV and others. That was an expression of themselves-that thing that artists feel so compelled to do. I don't think it's necessarily a method of distraction to hide their lack of talent. I'd also like to add that Adam has never wanted to be associated as an activist for gay rights, in fact he's said he would rather not be looked upon as that at all. His fans are responsible for those comments..not him.

      I really appreciate the debate this brings. I truly respect you and your opinions about Adam as well. Please continue to look in from time to time, as I always look forward to hearing your point of view!

    • profile image

      Adam B 

      8 years ago

      Jennifer, I respect you and your writing and actually enjoy reading your hubs about Adam even if I completely disagree with everything you say about him.

      So, with that being said, I need to say a few things. I am personally not offended by anything he did at the AMA's well except his pitchy and horrendous singing which you say he is so great at. (By the way, I am a singer as well and just because there are technical difficulties, it doesn't mean your voice should sound any different. If you start a song in a particular key, you should not go flat and sharp as many times as he did, even without in-ear monitors.)

      On the other hand, I get annoyed that Adam and his fans talk about how he is breaking down barriers for gay rights and how people just don't "Get Him." That's crap.

      Let me get this right...since he is gay he should be allowed to flip off the camera? Because he is gay he should be allowed to simulate oral sex with a back-up dancer? Since he is gay he should be able to make out with his keyboard player? Since he is gay he should be able to fondle the genital region of a second dancer?

      Regardless of the sex of the back-up dancers, any other artist would get an equal amount of critisism. But because Adam is an openly gay performer, he is crying discrimination and claiming victimisation.

      I think Freddie Mercury, Elton John, Melissa Ethridge, and countless other gay or lesbian artist let thier music do the talking more than thier "on stage antics." I dont; remember Freddie or Elton making out with thier bandmembers on stage in the name of being gay.

      I hear a lot of comparison from this performance to the Madonna / Britney /Christina Kiss on the MTV awards as well. I think it is funny that no one remembers the back-lash that performace had as well. MTV did in fact get a large number of complaints and it aired on cable television unlike the AMA's.

      I didn't care about the Madonna kiss with Brit and Christina, I didn't care about the Adam Lambert Kiss and I didn't care about the Janet Jackson nipple slipage at the super bowl. To me it is all calculated to distract the viewer from the lack of talent by the performer. Are Janet, Madonna and Brintney great singers? Nope. Same can be said for Adam.

      I predicted this album (the one with Adam looking like a bowie rip-off) will do moderately well (due to the hype of this AMA performance and the obsessive AI fans but his next album will tank leaving him a failure in the commercial world. He will get a job on broadway like Constantine and make a decent living. He is far from being anyone who should be compared to Elvis.

      Look at the track record for all AI alums...there are only two real successes; Clarkson & Daughtry.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      WOW is right! You nailed it again Jennifer. Nothing can take away Adams talent. I truly believe he is one the the greatest talents to hit the scene in many years.

    • alekhouse profile image

      Nancy Hinchliff 

      8 years ago from Essex Junction, Vermont

      "Others were just shocked out of their minds and didn't know what they saw. Poor things." This is so funny. But probably true. LOL

    • rvsource profile image


      8 years ago

      I'm watching Adam on the "Early Show" on CBS! He is going to be just fine, actually more than fine!

      Go Adam!

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Poor things indeed...they don't know what they're missing!


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