Friday, 17 April 2009

Top 11 - Ring of Fire


I made sure I didn't miss Adam's performance this time. It was country week and I was very intrigued and excited by how he would deal with this genre. I've never been a fan of country or the whole demographic I associate (predominantly white republican hicks, rednecks, bible-bashing puritans and conservatives twanging their way through songs of heartbreak) with it, and I didn't see it be his thing either.

When he described the sitar arrangement I felt even more excited because it would be a chance for him to stick his fingers up at the world of country and do his own anti-country thing. When I heard the piano accompaniment in the introduction, it sounded slightly menacing and when I heard his voice in the rehearsal, he sounded very seductive. Randy Travis seemed terrified. I couldn't wait and was salivating with anticipation.

On he came and I loved the whole anti-country look. The introduction was brooding, lurking and slightly sinister, and when he started to sing, I thought I was witnessing something quite special. He shifted into a minor key which I thought was genius as it made it sound dark. The first of the jumps into his high notes startled me but was brilliantly executed and bang on. His voice was powerful and built up to a masterful crescendo. The swirling camera movement and graphics were hypnotic but luring. I loved Adam's interpretation of the song. To me, the lyrics of 'Ring of Fire' are about being consumed by dark, sexual, forbidden obsessive passion and the danger. His vocals captured all of these things in his performance and more, which the original jolly upbeat version didn't to me.

The whole performance was mesmerising, sizzling and screamed out 'SEX!' He reminded me of Jim Morrison flirting with the camera. He teased with his slithering snake hips and by allowing us to see a flash of his stomach. When he finished, I felt gobsmacked. WOW! That was incredible. Did he just invade my private space, strip me, stroke me, tease me, passionately seduce me and all but fuck me, leaving me aching for him to take me and just do me whichever way he pleased? It was other-worldly and I yearned more of the mysterious creature that is Adam Lambert. It was so hot, I needed a cold shower afterwards.

It was unbelieveably risqué for prime-time but I absolutely loved it! At the same I felt that he was also giving a 'Fuck You!' to the whole American Idol phenomenon of churning out identikit, commercial, manufactured, safe, creatively barren, middle-of-the-road tat and doing things on his own terms and I love him for it. To me he wasn't only performing, but he made a very, very ballsy and bold statement. GENIUS!

He seemed very happy with his performance and curious about how it was received. The reception reminded me of that scene in Back to the Future where Marty goes back in time and does his guitar solo at the prom. Everyone just stared and wasn't quite sure what hit them. People were confused and were questioning what it was that they'd just been witness to. They were weirded out and struggling to find ways to label the performance. People were lost for words. When has a reality show contestant ever done something like that? That was definitely not country, but was it vaguely rock? I guess many people aren't yet ready for him.

That's one of the many things I love about Adam Lambert, you can't place a label on him, you can't define him in terms of things that already exist. He is just him, bold and uncompromising. You just want to follow him down the rabbit hole and discover more. The Ring of Fire describes where his fans have been teased and consumed. I'm there wanting more and there's no way out. This guy is a true superstar and compels you to keep watching.

22 comments:

  1. I just discovered your blog last week and found it so mesmerizing that I saved it to read in its entirety as I had time.
    I had time today and was having a marvelous time reading your thoughts and reviewing videos until I happened upon your Ring of Fire comments.

    I love RoF- I think it the single greatest performance in all of Idol history and quite possibly television as we know it. It was not your comments on the song that caught my eye.
    It was your preface to the comments and your views on country music fans which you described as "predominantly white republican hicks, rednecks, bible-bashing puritans and conservatives twanging their way through songs of heartbreak,".

    I am not a fan of country music.
    I am a Southern rural American and took great offense at your description.

    Whenever one categorizes such a huge and diverse group in such a pejorative manner you do great disservice to yourself. This was ignorant, small minded, and petty. You took a great blog and rendered it trash simply by exhibiting such prejudice. It was lazy thinking and crass journalism.
    You should be ashamed.

    ReplyDelete
  2. haha you mentioned wanting to follow Adam "down the rabbit hole." (last paragraph)

    Sound familiar (his new song)? LOL. Perfect!
    - Dana

    ReplyDelete
  3. Great job....well done....as you mentioned, I also believe that this man is gonna be something special..I was around for the Elvis days...and let me say...I'm getting the same vibe...

    ReplyDelete
  4. Yes!Loved revisiting ROF. I also (the first time) wasn't sure I liked it but I liked (into love) Adam. It was pure genius as is everything he has done since. thank you

    ReplyDelete
  5. How interesting that you chose to use the phrase "down the rabbit hole". A bit prophetic. :) RoF will always be my favorite Adam/Idol moment and I loved that he confused the s*** out of Kara and pissed Simon off. I also loved that it was added to Glamnation and getting to see it performed in NYC.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I love this performace, one of my fav! Rany Travis wife is a bitch! she just sits there and doesn't even clap! STUPID BITCH!

    ReplyDelete
  7. This performance was what took me from loving Adam to being completely obsessed with him. The download of the performance from iTunes is the sexiest 90 seconds ever from live, primetime TV. He was hot, hot, hot and I had trouble getting to sleep that night. Who cares what Simon or Randy Travis thought, we knew what was coming and I am so proud to be a member of the adoring Glamberts.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I haven't looked at the comments by "The Judges" in over a year, so it was interesting to listen to their comments again today. For the first time, I actually believe Randy Jackson offered spot-on feedback to Adam's performance of Ring of Fire. I think he also predicted Adam's success during his first audition… so he got Adam at auditions and he got Adam's stage delivery of RofF. Way to go Jackson. Who knew Jackson could say more than just "Hay Dog". Travis on the other hand, not to good with the words to even comment during rehearsals or live performance at getting Adam, but at least Travis did notice Adam is a nice guy.

    Adam will go and does take his headlining Glam Nation Tour to Nashville in July 2010 due to fan demand and receives great reviews. While the cover of Ring of Fire is included in the GNT set, it is combined in a medley of two other songs from the For Your Entertainment and FYE Remix CD’s, Voodoo and Down the Rabbit Hole. A reviewer commented after the Nashville performance, that Adam should have pulled the RofF song from the fast paced medley delivery to allow him time to speak to the audience with regards to the significance of singing RofF in Nashville. However, Adam did reference Simon's remarks later in the set but kept the 3-song medley intact nor did he comment about any significance of singing his version of the Cash/Carter song.
    I loved Adam's AIdol RofF performance (all of them) and remain a Lambert (Glambert) Fan... not so much an AIdol fan anymore, Adam set the performance bar at a height that may not be attainable by others to keep my viewing interest. Congrats to Adam Lambert on being the new worldwide breakout star, Rock God (didn’t want to leave Kara out), he became after AIdol and to his continued new paths that is, For Our Entertainment.

    ReplyDelete
  9. MamaKath, it's kinda funny, I've spotted quite a few song titles in my old posts. Maybe he's been here - one can dream! RoF is still my favourite too. It was such a daring spin to put on it and I found it annoying that the judges didn't all recognise the genius and give due praise. Well the sold-out concert now speaks for itself.

    Anonymous, her reaction was so funny, it's priceless. But maybe she just didn't know what to think.

    Lisa, me too! I couldn't get it off iTunes so I just kept tuning in to all the repeats on TV. It was definitely a pivotal moment in this fandom of mine.

    ovationstand, I didn't always agree with Randy's comments. I thought Paula was a fangirl from the start, especially when she threw down her pen and said 'He's the best we've seen in every city' at the audition. It's a shame that she didn't give more useful comments or at least show some more enthusiasm, which I was a little surprised by.
    I'll have to keep a look out for the reference in the videos, so thank you.
    I agree with you and think Adam has spoiled these shows for good. There was just nothing engaging or exciting about the last season and I guess I tuned in occasionally just to re-affirm how amazing Adam is.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Have no idea if you have the set up so you see new comments on old posts...but...wanted to say...first, I love your blog. Second, I, too, was thoroughly disgusted by your description of people who are Christians, from the South, read the Bible, and are white. How is your insulting description any better than calling black people all gangstas and the n-word, or all mexicans as wet-backs and lazy beatners?

    Still love your blog, but I hope that you've progressed from this viewpoint since May 2010. Perhaps you have, as I look at your new stuff, and it is excellent, with no slurs or bigotry.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Anonymous, thank you. I still read through all new comments whether on old posts or new. My tone of writing back then was much more snarky than it is now. It was a reflection of what I thought about country music and its related stereotypes at the time. It seems that you also have stereotype associations (though in less offensive terms).
    If it makes any difference to you at all, at the time I thought I'd phrased it so it wasn't a blanket statement of outright name-calling, rather a description of my prejudice. The list of names was supposed to have the emphasis on my association rather than the demographic in the sentence "the whole demographic I associate with it, which is made up of predominantly..." Reading it later, it isn't clear and sounds much more offensive than intended.
    I understand it's not just the phrasing but the words. I went for a sarcastic piss-take and thought that the list of names was so OTT ridiculous that no one would identify themselves or others with that group to feel offended. I was wrong.
    As you've pointed out, I've learned since then with all focus now on the positive.

    ReplyDelete
  12. As I wrote in my first comment (a few days ago) it's not too long since I've (finally!) discovered Adam and his wonderful voice. I don't watch American Idol, so I didn't see his performances on the show before. True, I watched most of them I could find on YouTube during Christmas holidays. And I loved them all. Then I found this blog and it’s so much better to watch all those performances with your comments on them - thank you so much for them!

    That's one of the many things I love about Adam Lambert, you can't place a label on him, you can't define him in terms of things that already exist. He is just him, bold and uncompromising. You just want to follow him down the rabbit hole and discover more. The Ring of Fire describes where his fans have been teased and consumed. I'm there wanting more and there's no way out. This guy is a true superstar and compels you to keep watching.
    That’s so excellently said and I absolutely agree with you on this! Adam is so incredibly talented - he can sing any song from any genre of music. And every time I hear Adam (especially live) he never ceases to amaze me - and not only when he sings a new song. I think he might sing the same song probably a thousand times and every time makes it sound different, new, great... just fabulous!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. shimoli710, how did you end up discovering Adam? I'm glad you have now! He's a very special performer with an extraordinary voice. With such a huge catalogue of performances to watch I don't even know where to begin with recommendations! I'm excited for you. Do you have any favourites yet?

      Delete
  13. Hi Lambosessed,
    well, it's quite a long story. :) So I apologize, but this comment is going to be really long.
    I saw some comments about AI and an incredibly talented contestant of season 8 of the competition on the Internet. Anyway, I confess, I don’t like AI and don’t watch the show, so I just ignored those news about Adam. (And I have to say - I don’t live in US. I’m from Europe and it's a shame, but we haven't heard about Adam too much here until recently .) A few years later (about a year ago) I heard about Adam again from my friend. I tried to google him and the first what I found were those pictures with him and Tommy kissing during their performance and some news about Adam smoking joint on stage. Alas, this didn’t impress me. Then I saw Adam’s performance with Queen at EMAs last year on November. He totally blew me away! And since then - I started searching the Internet and YouTube, looking for news and videos about Adam trying to learn about him as much as possible. And... the more I’ve learned, the more excited I've become about Adam, his incredible voice, his personality. Now I just admire him. And I enjoy every of his performances. He is such an amazingly talented, clever, humble, hard working young man. And he is the first singer in the world I prefer to listen live (and see - I love to see Adam singing!). Gloria (from AdamBertDaily blog) recommended me your site and I was thrilled when I saw all those links to Adam’s performances on it. You’ve been doing such a wonderful job with this! I can’t thank you enough! And I really enjoy your comments. I appreciate especially how in depth and honest they are.
    You are right - there is such a huge catalogue of performances. I decided to watch them all from the beginning (I just saw AI’s top 7 disco week now). And it’s hard to tell which of Adam’s performances is my favorite. I love them all! Though, there is one of them I probably love best - Adam singing Mad World. I love this song since I’ve first heard Adam singing it. And when I saw his performance of it on AI - it was beyond perfect!
    I think it probably will take some time to me to watch all Adam’s performances on your site. But I for sure will watch it all. And if you don’t mind, I will post some of my thoughts from time to time (I love to talk about Adam, his exceptional voice and performances). :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. shimoli710, do not apologise! I'm always interested in reading about how Adam hooked and reeled people in. Even though we're such a diverse group from far and wide, it seems that a common theme is the intensity of emotions he stirs in us when he performs and his ability to inspire passion. I used to turn my nose up at singers from shows like AI but Adam has blown that out the window.
      I can see from your comments that you're working your way through the old performances and I'm almost envious of your being able to experience the performances for the first time, without any of the angst of worrying about keeping Adam on the show.
      Enjoy the show and please do post your thoughts, I'll look forward to reading all about your journey through the performances!

      Delete
    2. I can see from your comments that you're working your way through the old performances and I'm almost envious of your being able to experience the performances for the first time, without any of the angst of worrying about keeping Adam on the show.
      I admit, watching Adam's performances on AI the idea that Adam might have not made it to the finale popped in my mind from time to time and it was so scary! (True, it was obvious from the very beginning he was the best of them, but still... you never know...)

      I've been watching "AI Tour" shows lately (I've read your review of Tampa show yesterday, but haven't had time to see those performances yet). I enjoy every one of those shows and I totally agree with your quote from the beginning of your Tampa review: "Adam Lambert, what the fuck have you done with my life?!!!" - SO TRUE! My life has totally changed since I discovered Adam. Trying to catch up with all Adam's performances from the past and all his radio promotions in these days - this keeps me pretty busy, having almost no time for anything else. But I don't regret it. Quite the opposite - Adam has brought so much joy, happiness and so many positive things into my life. And his performances, chats and interviews always brighten my day.

      Enjoy the show and please do post your thoughts, I'll look forward to reading all about your journey through the performances!
      Thank you for the encouragement. I love to share my thoughts about Adam and his performances. Just - I re-read some of my comments and OMG, I have to apologize for my English. I probably never learn to write without typos and mistakes, sorry.

      Delete
    3. shimoli710, are you still completely hooked or have you managed to find time for other things recently?! There's just been so much to watch it's been tough keeping up. Please don't worry about typos, I enjoy your comments regardless.

      Delete
  14. Hi Denise again here - When Cowell said What the hell was that? I just said WOW! and have been doing so ever since. I've lost interest in AI now since there is nobody to hold a candle to Adam and I am only keeping an ear out in case he does a guest spot which I believe is in the pipeline now.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Denise, me too. No one since has managed to compare but I think I can see his influence in terms of staging / costume / showmanship / interpretation in many talent shows since.

      Delete
  15. I've been a fan of Adam's since "Mama," and have attended three of his concerts. It makes me sad, as a Republican conservative, to be bashed by you in such (I will say it) ignorant way. You know nothing about the south which is a mixture of many different people. Adam said he was received with great kindness there. There are just as many prejudiced people in the north (try Boston where blacks are concerned). I was just battling on a blog with a bunch of homophobes from Boston who were posting the most disgusting things about Adam's appearance at the radio stations there. The media, in general, denigrate the south, but the north is just as prejudiced in its own way. The old saying - the south will live with blacks, but won't work with them - the north will work with them, but won't live with them. Certainly true of the north where I come from. The south is far more open and loving than you know.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous, I have addressed this in the comment above, however, I'm not sure why you think I was picking on Southerners. I made a statement stating that I associated country music with various groups of people and nowhere did I mention the South.

      Delete
  16. Can you tell me why they chose Randy Travis for the mentor this week? Of all the country stars that's the best they could do? One of the most close-minded of the bunch? He just proves many of the stereo-types out there about country music - RoF was amazing

    ReplyDelete