Tuesday, 29 September 2009

For the Bestudded Glittery Anoraks

It's a good day for Adam Lambert & fans as his album - which we've still heard precisely fuck all from - has hit the top of the US Amazon chart. Woohoo!

Since we're all famished, here's a little something for us anoraks to nibble on while we wait. It was shortly after the end of AI and before the start of the tour in that bored gap, much like now, that I wanted to watch all the dress rehearsal clips to see how they compared to those of the live performances. Edit: The dress rehearsal clips were those shown in the recap package at the end of the show. I wanted to obsess over how every performance was unique and I wanted to compare Adam's notes and runs. But after scouring the internet, I realised they were nowhere to be found. Surely I couldn't be the only one who wanted this? The seeds of the idea for this post were planted and would germinate on a rainy day. After days of downloading the full episodes just to get those few seconds, here's the resulting video:

I remember that Satisfaction was a performance in which Adam really outshone the rest of the pack and stood out as a star with his jaw-dropping vocals, his sense of fun and his exhilarating infectious energy. I just felt that he didn't belong on Idol and deserved a bigger stage and audience. The live final note was incredible - its length, the run and the rough guttural rock edge of its tone. I didn't know at the time that they showed footage filmed from the dress rehearsal for the numbers at the end, so on seeing it that first time, there was a slight discord with my previous impression and I was a little underwhelmed because I'd thought I'd remembered it being better. The rehearsal wasn't as elaborate, but what was more noticeable to me was that there was an off note sandwiched in the middle which made the glory note sound just a little flat. His posture seemed a little tentative and comparatively amateurish, but the rehearsal did give us that gem of an expression at the end, going from fierce sexy to sweet smile - the subject of many gifs. The reprise note was much simpler, more sustained and powerful. Instead of riffing, he slid into the glory note for a wail that sounded a lot like Axl Rose.

The live performance of BoW was angrier, more impassioned and included higher notes, but the rehearsal had a slightly different feel to it that was more fun. Adam bounced up the steps, gave us an extra dance move instead of reversing backwards and added a 'Wooh!' at the end. He also missed out the 'Yes you do, yeah yeah!' but in exchange, we got some signature head tipping.

The vocals in the live performance of RoF were impeccable whereas in rehearsal they weren't as smooth but utilised more of his rich and gravelly tone. There wasn't the same level of camera engagement from Adam and it didn't have the infamous shirt-lifting moment, but the camerawork was a lot less dizzying and perhaps would have made the pearl-clutching prudes slightly less queasy.

I'd always thought ToMT was one of the weaker performances from a vocal perspective and is one where I prefer the dress rehearsal to the live. This is because of the tone, which sounded slightly less strained and more on pitch, and I also prefer the extended trill on the last 'tears'. Adam seemed to have more fun during the live version of PTFM but crucially, it missed the pelvic thrusts and snarl of the rehearsal. You have to wonder how often there was a party going on downstairs whenever they filmed above the waist.

It was only after MW that I became aware of the existence of the separate rehearsal clip when I heard a different, pitch-perfect ending and not the one I'd heard just seconds before. In the rehearsal, the penultimate 'Ma-ad' was given two notes and he didn't reach for the third, higher 'Mad world' at the end which gave him the trouble in the live performance.

BTBW showcased some astonishing high notes which seemed to all have been saved for the live performance because the glory note shown in the rehearsal clip was considerably lower. The power and pitch of them still amaze me now. There wasn't a lot of difference between the IICHYs apart from slight differences in timing with the timbre equally beautiful in both.

The big difference between both FGs is the length of the glory note. The live one is much longer albeit a little thin. I prefer the slightly shorter glory note with the longer descending run in the rehearsal but I thought the last note of the run wasn't quite as perfect. Still, who the fuck else can hold a note like that? And let's not forget the close-up shot of his disdainful and slightly sinister sneer at the end of the rehearsal.

I was blown away by WLL first time round, so it's a bit strange watching it now after seeing 52 different versions from the tour and their aggressively sexual manoeuvres. He looks so restrained! There's very little difference between the live and the rehearsal apart from the camera angles where we get a better view of Adam's neck snap & swivel.

Both versions of One are very similar and that glory note never fails to impress me. In rehearsal, he didn't palm the air and went into the glory note from a slightly higher note and didn't go so low at the end of the run. There's a minor difference in the length of the final notes from Cryin' but they're otherwise identical. The MW reprise is much slower in tempo during the rehearsal, which includes a great shot from below with the 'moon' behind Adam. I much prefer the live version of ACIGC where the descent is smoother and I really love the way that the run re-ascends. Apart from the camera angles, there's no noticeable difference between the live and rehearsal versions of NB where even the hand gestures at the same. I guess there's little to play with when you're handed such a piece of uninspiring crap.

Anyway, I hope you've enjoyed obsessing over the live vs rehearsal notes with me. I've had a miserable time, am tired of editing videos and have had writer's block, unsatisfied with anything I've put together so I thought I'd just wrap up the rest of the AI stuff and draw a line under it as we impatiently await a new phase, legs a-shaking, fingers a-tapping, ready to lose our collective shit. I think I need loss of said shit for gain in inspiration!

Sunday, 27 September 2009

Poll Results: Your Most Memorable Parts of the Set

I started this poll a couple of weeks into the tour after the previous one finished, and closed it just after the mid-point. The options I gave were ones that either got a fair amount of coverage in reviews or replayed themselves in my head way after I finished watching the videos and I tried to include something from each song:

No surprises that it was the slinky dancing courtesy of those wriggly snake hips that topped the list. The first time I saw Adam's moves I felt a surge of pride and found myself laughing as he continued to subvert the AI image with their campness and derring-do. He'd already smashed it to pieces during the show, but it was fun to watch him grind the those last vestiges into a fine glitter. No straight guy can dance like that and I was happy that Adam's sexuality was proudly on display. I've lost count of the number of exclamations of 'Oh my God!' that peppered the videos as people couldn't believe their eyes. As the tour went on, he loosened up and his moves got more accentuated with bigger ripples and fuller gyrations. How many times have you paused and re-watched certain moves over and over again?

Slightly suprising for me was that the Starlight vocals came in at a close second. I often try to gauge the popularity of certain elements by the number of YouTube tributes in circulation. There are plenty dedicated to the visuals - the dancing, the mic molestation, the jacket removal and the whipping but there's much less from the vocal perspective. The voice and even Starlight itself were often neglected and eluded mention in many reviews. The thing is, we often take it for granted that Adam has the most amazing vocal cords and can sing, so it tends to be overlooked for other aspects of the performance. When it comes to polls like this though, psychology comes into play where I suspect we don't necessarily vote for the most accurate option. It was initially quite far behind so I think there may be an instinct at work where we want to shift the focus of attention on the voice rather than, say, the mic antics. We want to make it known that we appreciate what a fiendish song it is to sing and recognise what a superb job he did with it. It did seem to take a bit of a toll on his voice as the key was lowered in the middle of the tour in Hamilton. Since it's a slow day, I've included versions in both keys. For an eerie effect, try overlaying them so that he harmonises with himself. To do this, the Hamilton video needs a 24 second head start. As I said, it's been a slow few days!

The jacket removal comes next, and was usually responsible for the loudest screams of the night from what I can gather from the videos. There were a couple of locations where it didn't want to come off but the way he tore it open and pumped out his chest energised the crowd into a frenzy and got them ready to do some shakin'. Much could be made of the symbolism of the gesture - shrugging off the last of the AI image and showing us his true self, preparing us for what's to come - who knows? The result is that we get two different looks in his set. It could just be that the jacket doesn't suit the rest of the medley as well because it leans more towards funk rather than rock. It certainly makes it easier to dance and allows his moves to be much more visible to the audience.

Whole Lotta Love produced some memorable moments through the very overt sexual gestures and we were all glued to our screens trying to predict whether the mic impregnation moment would give birth to a 'baby', a 'woman' or even a 'honey'. (For those who love numbers, the these were 56%, 42% and 2% respectively.) There was plenty of aggressive thrusting and crotch stroking and mic stand fondling - prime material for gifs destined for a lifetime of looping, just in case the memory needs a little refreshing. And who can forget his stripper moves at the end of the tour?

Next down the list were the glory notes and runs. There were some staggering notes that Adam reached, coupled with some incredible riffing, the most impressive of which were demonstrated in WLL where there was a huge amount of variation in his runs towards the end of the song. They were also prominently featured during Slow Ride and Let's Dance. At the start of the tour, these were generously dished out, but about a third of the way in, he started rationing them a little, choosing to go lower to preserve his voice. He lowered the key of WLL in Long Island and from there on, the rationing wasn't noticeable.

It was a little unexpected that the underwear and props weren't higher on the list especially as these kept getting mentioned in interviews, but the timing may have been a factor as the props seemed to increase exponentially towards the end of the tour. Each city upped its ante, determined to outdo the last in order to stage the best show. They added fun and spontaneity into the routines although they weren't always welcomed, especially when they hit Adam. That first bra in Vancouver had us all going crazy and impressed by the way he seamlessly choreographed it into the routine. Then we had the feather boas, the whips, the handcuffs, the riding crops, the phallic objects, the unidentified, the jockstraps, the boxer shorts and the hats. Towards the end, it was as if someone had let off one giant and slightly kinky party popper over the stage.

I think the iconic poses are much more memorable than what we consciously register and there are plenty to choose from. For example, during WLL when Adam snaps his head back whilst gripping the mic, his silhouette during the guitar solo, the finishing pose when he punches the air, coat tails flapping. Then there are all the arm gestures during Starlight, the the familiar glory note pose when he pulls the mic away from his mouth in MW, other hand palming the air. Then leaning back slightly, eyes closed, hand in the air when he hits those high notes during Slow Ride. And let's not forget those poses during the Bowie Medley. I'm pretty sure now that when you hear any part of the song, you'll instinctively know what position he's in, or conversely if you see any photograph or clip without the sound, you'll know exactly what he's singing. I won't give answers as it's so easy, but you can try it out here:

Trailing at the bottom of the list is the MW singalong. This isn't surprising since we've just about reached saturation point but I figured there might be a huge difference between those who attended the concert and those experiencing it only through the videos. Some reviews described it as a magical moment and I can understand how much of the impact is lost when it's contained within the limitations of video. I can imagine the atmosphere - the whole arena is united for the song, singing along, holding up anything that gives off light. The videos just cannot capture that. The song is about the pain of isolation but the performance brings about a mood of togetherness. There are no social outcasts as everyone is there to support each other through their love of music. That's why we're all here, and that, I believe, is what Adam Lambert is all about.

Monday, 21 September 2009


As it's been a slow day, I thought we could refresh our memories a little. After the end of the tour, I'm guessing we're feeling a bit nostalgic. If watching the final Don't Stop Believing, seeing all the interactions between the Idols and knowing how much they'll miss each other made you go all sentimental, then I have the answer. Sit back, make yourselves comfortable and enjoy!

Semi-final - Closer

Top 13 - Jackson Five Medley

Top 11 - T.R.O.U.B.L.E.

Top 10 - Motown Medley

If you've viewing from the home page, I've added a jump to save it from taking forever to load. Click for all the rest of the group performances from the original top 9 DSB right through to the final results show.

Friday, 18 September 2009

Twisting the Dial

It's been a couple of days since the end of the tour after which there have been some unexpected goodies. First of all, there was the release of a video yesterday giving us a glimpse of Adam's ideas of putting on a spectacle for the Zodiac Show:

We had a better idea at the beginning of the tour how much Adam held back during AI. We'd already seen his performances at the Zodiac Show but were never sure how much he had to just follow directions and how much of it came from him. This article from way back suggested that Adam had a fair amount of control, but until seeing this video, I never realised the extent to which his ideas were tamed. I love his child-like enthusiasm that makes his requests impossibly difficult to resist. The comment about 'Those albino dudes from the Matrix' not having the desired effect and his reaction is very reminiscent of Simon's and Rocky Horror. At least he didn't waste the outfit idea, which I would describe as Glamazonian warrior ice-queen.

I have to wonder about the timing of the release of the video because I believe it to be deliberate. Was it to keep up the buzz? Was it a present to his fans? I'm inclined to think that its purpose is to prime us for what's to come in terms of the visual performance aspect. In the same manner in that if he had first appeared on AI with his tour antics, he would have irreparably alienated many. But by the time the tour came along people were somewhat prepared. He was still contained during the tour so now it's time to crank it up a notch. I think a lot was learned by testing the waters with RoF about how far to push the envelope and stay on the right side of the line. This video seems to say 'You ain't seen nothing yet. This is me, this is my art, this is my direction, these are my crazy-ass ideas, so get ready bitches!' The Zodiac Show is already pretty far out, but if even there he had to make compromises, you have to wonder what the mind-blowing extravaganza will be if he's given full artistic license to do exactly as he pleases. With rumours of the next single being 'Strut' and a music video ready, how far will he dial up the avant garde? Exciting times await.

Reminiscent of the transition between RoF and ToMT, we see another huge contrast between that video and Adam's appearance at the corporate event today where he dialled it right back down with a bare natural look and honeyed voice entirely appropriate for the situation.

Here are Starlight, Tracks of my Tears, Mad World, Crazy (duet with Kris):

Pre-performance banter

Starlight is sung in a manner very similar to the GMA performance and it was a pleasant surprise to hear acoustic ToMT again despite being so short. It was all about the voice, which lingers long after the peformance. Even though I've heard MW so many times, I appreciate hearing a version with acoustic guitar. The sparseness of the arrangement makes it a beautiful lament and the purity of those final notes are just breathtaking. The banter before the duet is worth watching as Adam effortlessly charms the whole room with his charisma, you can't help but smile. Crazy is a little frustrating for me though, as Kris seems to be straining while Adam has to restrain himself to try to make the duet work. It would have been too jarring for Adam to go all-out but that's what we all wanted.

The last couple of days have reminded us again just how dynamic and versatile Adam is. If I were to hazard a guess, the tour performances would sit somewhere near the middle. During today's performances, he dialled it right down but for the Zodiac Show, we know he didn't crank it up fully. My thoughts are that he's been tweaking up the dial in stages so that we don't all explode. One thing I'm really itching to know is - just how far does the dial go?

Wednesday, 16 September 2009


Since this was the last one, I decided to stay up to brave the cellcast last night and was pleasantly surprised by the quality. It was the first time I've managed to sit through the whole set and more. The cellcaster was at the front and the result was similar to some of lower quality videos that have been posted. I'd been a little excited to see what kind of shenanigans would ensue, especially since there was talk of surprises going round the rumour mill. I tuned in at the end of Danny's set, and during the pause, I could feel the buzz of excitement. If salivating, pressure building up in chests and sweating palms make a noise, I heard it along with the intake of breath and the flutter of hearts. I had to turn the volume down a notch when the screen graphics heralded the start of Adam's set. Adam fans don't half scream.

Here are best videos from the final stop of the tour so far with my comments below:

When Adam swaggered onto the stage, the first thing I noticed was the hair - a glittery bouffant pompadour that lent more to sculpture than hairdo. From the subsequent photos, Adam's makeup was extra dramatic with points like tear stains trailing down from his lower lids and rhinestones framing his eyes. He wore a huge indigo gem of a ring.

Adam was on fire during Whole Lotta Love and his energy was explosive. He got 'way way down' and squatted so low he could have been lapdancing for a very lucky midget. His hips took on a life of their own and he threw us 'woman' along with 'backdoor man'. His final flourish ended with an accentuated twirl along with a crotch stroke just for good measure. He introduced Starlight by thanking 'Manchester' in an accent that I thought was a nod to its British counterpart, then thanked the band, telling them 'You guys fuckin'/frickin' rock!' He didn't sway about as much as usual when his back was turned, perhaps a little distracted by something. Mad World sounded good through the cell cast. He lost the timing at one point, but his voice sounded delicate yet full and resonant.

Slow Ride started with thanks to the crowd and a promise, 'I won't disappoint you, get ready for the CD!' It was such a fun end exuberant rendition and I found myself shouting at my screen as the cellcast got cut off. It started with mutual taking the piss out of each other - Adam flapping his limp wrist a la Allison, and Allison gyrating with a sequinned cod piece with a glittery black feather boa as a tail. Adam ogled it for a moment before cracking up. The performance saw flowers being thrown back into audience, a 'hey baby!' to a glittery bra, and another bunch of roses getting sniffed. He added an extra 'Slow' before realising it was actually time for the guitar solo, during which Allison took off the thong and tail. It was all thrown back to the crowd along with a purple something. It was sweet that they held hands up the steps toward the finish. After staring at each other for a shared moment, probably feeling a little emotional, he kissed her hand. Allison extended the song with an extra riff at the end.

The excessive echo effect at the beginning of the Bowie Medley was a little distracting. Adam picked up a Glambert bowler hat that had been lobbed onto the stage at the end of the last song and rested it on top of his hair. He worked it into the performance, giving a little bow before sending it on its way. He commanded the crowd to shake its collective ass at the start of Let's Dance. Antonio the backing singer was holding a chicken and Adam improvised the lyrics, 'You've got a nice chicken too,' before he started spanking him with it numerous times. Adam laughed and after it was thrown to the ground, Adam just couldn't help himself and exclaimed 'Oh! It's a lovely cock!' then threw it into the audience. While singing about a flower, he picked up a bunch of roses to throw into the crowd. At the end, I wondered if he had any more surprises but as the platform lowered, I just wanted to grab that arm to stop him. Want more.

The cellcast caught the last part of the medley and I decided to stay tuned for Don't Stop Believing. I was pleasantly surprised to see that as Kris's mic stand ascended, it was glammed up wrapped in a blue feather boa and I though it must have been Adam's mischievous doing. Kris looked a little surprised but amused as he shook his head. I didn't watch all of the set, but saw Adam come back out for Hey Jude and he was wearing the vest that was slashed low which he wore at the start of the tour. When he ascended for DSB, Kris looked very sheepish in Adam's jacket. I didn't notice at first because I wasn't looking at any of the others. The stage soon became littered with silly string and random objects from all sides and I was glad the caster helped me by following Adam around the stage. Michael and Danny both took turns to wrap Adam up in orange then white boas and I was moved by the genuine camaraderie between all the idols.

After the song finished, Adam walked around the stage, picking up and throwing the objects back to the audience. Kris pretended to throw Adam's coat and it was funny seeing his reaction, a momentary look of terror, to Kris's stitch-up. Adam took off his gloves and his jewellery to give away to his lucky fans as a gesture of gratitude and appreciation, and I was on the verge of feeling all choked up. It was the end of the Idol journey for us all. There were plenty of group hugs, and I felt that he was reluctant to leave the stage. We were all reluctant, but I know that he's destined for much bigger stages. Here's hoping that we don't have to wait too long for him to grace it once again; better, riskier, sparklier, fiercer and no doubt, 'Adamer'.

Thank you Adam for the entertainment and escape.

Tuesday, 15 September 2009


This was the penultimate stop and despite not being fully recovered from his illness, Adam seemed to have a lot of fun in changing it up. Sporting swept-back hair, he held back a little vocally, but made up for it by letting loose physically. I wonder what surprises he'll have in store for us in tonight's finale.

Whole Lotta Love - Stripper moves on 'way down inside', 'honey', lovely slide on first looooove glory note, 'backdoor man'.
Starlight - Stumbling and laughing, some feedback issues.
Mad World - A few iffy notes at start.
Slow Ride - 'Ooh it's hot in here!', cat o'nine tails, orange boa, small black bra, lots of fun.
David Bowie Medley - Donned a fedora from crowd, not as vocal in beckoning the crowd to their feet at the start of Let's Dance. Hip swivelling, 'run with you two and you two and them two', 'peace' with a giggle, chest pumping & ass thrusting, twirl at end with lower end notes.


Well, I'm finally back up to date (sort of) for now, so here's my selection from Providence:
Whole Lotta Love - Excited bouncing on the spot, 'baby', lots of 'Ooh's in riffs.
Starlight - Sends happy birthday wishes to Aaron the drummer, joyful relaxed smiles.
Mad World - A very tender whisper
Slow Ride - Allison enters with riding crop adorned with pink feathers, spanking Adam. Magenta bra, pink bra, pointing to each other at end.
David Bowie Medley - Spring in step, skipping about stage, extra feline & playful, 'shakin' your ass', waves to Aaron, varies up dance moves.

Monday, 14 September 2009

Portland ME

No signs of sickness from Adam. Here's my video selection:
Whole Lotta Love - 'Woman', 'backdoor man', lots of improvised riffing.
Mad World - Started with one foot on higher stool rung.
Slow Ride - More singing with arms round each other.
Fame & Let's Dance - Huge riff at end of Fame, sings 'happy birthday to you' to the backing singer, fitting it into the melody.


Adam warned us that was feeling sick, although from the vocals you would never have known it as there was no holding back. All that theatre training has certainly paid its dividends. Here are the best videos so far - I've included Don't Stop Believing because Adam also sang Kris's part.

Whole Lotta Love - 'Baby' with long riff, backdoor man.
Mad World - Pleasantly surprised he belted the glory note.
Slow Ride - Sending his congratulations to his friends Jimmy and Vince who tied the knot.
David Bowie Medley - Draped round red feather boa, echo clashed slightly with singing.
Don't Stop Believing - Adam rose from platform alone, only changed top half of costume. Sang Kris's parts as Kris would have, kicked a couple of objects off the stage. One arm pinned behind back for much of it. Dished out all the thanks, wished Kris a happy recovery, beauty of a glory note.

Wilkes Barre

Again, lots of good videos, here is my selection:
Whole Lotta Love - Lots of improvisations, 'woman', insane vocals.
David Bowie Medley - Knocking on leg to the beat, pose as taking off jacket, draped round blue boa, blows kiss to crowd, changing it up after 'Let's swa-a-ay'.


There were lots of good videos from this stop, but here are my favourites:
Whole Lotta Love - Aggressive, strong vocals, huge 'woman' riff, 'backdoor man' x 2.
Slow Ride - 'C'mon, catch!' when throwing red boa, arm around Allison mid-performance, shimmy of shoulders at end.
David Bowie Medley - Thumb up to band at start, 'Woooh, gifts!', laughing by the bassist, pink bra.

Sunday, 13 September 2009

Grand Rapids

Whole Lotta Love - Flawless, 'woman' with super riff, backdoor man x 2.
Starlight - Happy, mentions Matt.
Slow Ride - Gives grey skinnyfying knickers to Allison, yellow & black boa, kicked something, awesome vocals.
David Bowie Medley - Smiles, hit in torso with some projectile.


Hair flatter and natural-looking.
Whole Lotta Love - Extra long 'baby'.
Starlight - Smiles.
Mad World - Sounds a bit off in parts.
Slow Ride - Allison playfully shoves Adam's ass. Adam beckons Allison with a riding crop whip with pink feathers. She turns and Adam gives her a light spanking on leg.
David Bowie Medley - Whips leg with cat o' nine tails, 'Who wants it?' before throwing into crowd. Extra 'yeah!' at end.


Whole Lotta Love - Extra swagger, 'woman', crazy riffing, phenomenal vocals.
Mad World - Powerful belt.
Slow Ride - Takes a sip of water, clinically throws black bra.
David Bowie Medley - Lacked relaxed smiles, didn't mention city at end.


Whole Lotta Love - 'Woman', staggering vocals.
Starlight - Sounds a little husky.
Mad World - Held head for a while.
Slow Ride - Kicked something, put arms around each other before end note.
David Bowie Medley - A problem with feedback at start of Fame, throws pink scarf.


Elvis hair after haircut.
Whole Lotta Love - No actions at 'every inch', 'woman', didn't throw himself about as much, less physical.
Starlight - Raised knee during 'care if I live or die'.
Slow Ride - No playing with props.
David Bowie Medley - Left props alone.

Kansas City

Whole Lotta Love - Very long 'woman'.
Mad World - Very distracting echo, soft glory note.
Slow Ride - Sang parts with arm around Allison, danced together.
David Bowie Medley - In full slow gyratory mode, long last riff, removed earpiece.

St. Louis

Whole Lotta Love - Lots of gratuitous mic-wanking, mic stand whipped over by coat tail, 'baby', sublime vocals.
Starlight & Mad World - Falsetto not fantastic.
Slow Ride - Adam cracking Allison up, ignored props.
David Bowie Medley - Earpiece wire got disconnected from back pocket, shoulder-popping by backup singers.


Whole Lotta Love - 'Woman'.
Starlight - Slightly shaky vocals, 'expectayeeayeeaytions
Mad World - Unusually a little flat.
Slow Ride - Allison pats him on the bum, Adam pulls a face before end note and points to drummer.
David Bowie Medley - Very playful.


Whole Lotta Love - Cheeky thrusts at 'every inch', added head rolls, 'woman', 'backdoor man'.
Starlight - Brought in second verse prematurely, missed 'until the end of my life' lyric.
Slow Ride - Plenty of high riffs.
David Bowie Medley - Lime green bra.


Big fluffy hair, lots of props.
Whole Lotta Love - Rare off-key wail, 'woman', 'backdoor man', very long high last note.
Starlight - Could have done with a little fine tuning.
Slow Ride - Allison with polka dot boxers/scarf, Adam throws back pink bra, spanks Allison's calf with a riding crop whip with blue feathers.
Bowie Medley - Black and red boas kicked off stage, choregraphed voice and actions with falling boa. Spanked self with another riding crop, made 'pain' sound effect before throwing back into crowd with a considerate 'look out!'. Chuckle on picking up cat o' nine tails, overkill on echo effect.


Whole Lotta Love - Plenty of mic stand action, lots of high wailing, long 'woman'.
Starlight - More dancing at start.
Mad World - Pause before 'very nervous', no belting.
Slow Ride - Blue boa thrown at Allison - 'Throw it at her head/hair', last note not sung in synch.
David Bowie Medley - Laugh after 'cavemen go', lots of hip shaking.


Whole Lotta Love - 'Woman', 'back door man', crazy riffing.
Mad World - No powerful glory note.
Slow Ride - Holding black towel at start, kicked white piece of clothing off stage.
David Bowie Medley - Sparkly burgundy scarf, iffy penultimate note, ended on 'dance together', lots of echo.


Whole Lotta Love - Excited fingers wagging, delayed actions at 'inch', 'way, way down inside, woman', incredible vocals.
Starlight - 'Ooh that worked me out, I'm out of breath!' Weak falsetto.
Mad World - A bit of fine tuning needed at start, sounds nasal.
Slow Ride - Whipped himself with black cat o' nine tails, great high improvisations, silly dance at end.
David Bowie Medley - Head roll during strip, no ascending 'fame fame fame...', pulled out earpiece


Whole Lotta Love - Lots of mic straddling and humping, 'woman'.
Starlight - Laughing at something at start when back turned.
Mad World - Great belt at climax.
Slow Ride - 'Hot' and 'sticky' there with giggle at start, joking about the flapping limp wrist.
David Bowie Medley - Super riff at end of Fame, extended clapping, somewhat random hand gestures at 'hide', very low ascending final note.

Saturday, 12 September 2009


Elvis hair.
Whole Lotta Love - 'Woman', impressive long and high 'loooove' glory notes. Increased mic straddling.
Mad World - Stood up early, no belt.
Slow Ride - Black bra, draped black boa around guitarist.
David Bowie Medley - Series of body ripples on 'pain', off on last note of Fame, made bassist laugh with 'hide'. 'Let's dance' turned shouty when Adam realised he was a little off-key.


Swept back Elvis hair
Whole Lotta Love - No chop just thrust at 'every inch', vocal acrobatics, long 'baby' riff, mic stand wanking, 'c'mon girl', 'backdoor man'.
Starlight - 'Promise' with scout's honour sign.
Mad World - Soft glory note.
Slow Ride - Pink bra, high wails.
Bowie Medley - Wrapped in turquoise feather boa.


Whole Lotta Love - 'Baby', impressive vocal acrobatics.
Starlight - Strong vocals.
Mad World - Return of the belt.


Whole Lotta Love - Hit on the knee with a phallic object which he kicked back. Kept in lower key. No chop & thrust action, but simulated grip during 'every inch'. 'Baby', first 'love' glory note didn't ascend.
Starlight - 'Thank you for the gifts, but please just don't throw them AT me!', lowered the key.
Mad World - Stood up gently & slowly. No belt, which lessened impact.
Slow Ride
David Bowie Medley - Very strong echo, 'run with you two and you and you'. Refrained from reaching end high notes, twirl & lean to side at end. No mention of place name.

Long Island 2

Swept back Elvis hair
Whole Lotta Love - Sung in lower key, increased hip action, very long 'baby' riff, 'backdoor man' x 2.
Starlight - A little difficulty with falsetto.
Mad World - Some changes in timing, strong echo.
Slow Ride - 'This is extra large!' to jock strap, bra, better harmonies, lift & swing hug at end.
David Bowie Medley - Twirl with head back, 'you two and you', full movements when dancing.

Long Island 1

Hair swept back, slightly dishevelled.
Whole Lotta Love - 'Baby', aggressive, mic stand molesting.
Starlight - Fiddling with earpiece, riffing with 'revelations'.
Mad World - Soft glory note.
Slow Ride - Drake swinging white boxer shorts.
David Bowie Medley - Caught big white boxers from Drake.

Newark 2

New hairstyle - swept back but floppy and slightly dishevelled.
Whole Lotta Love - Low first 'love' glory note, 'baby', 'backdoor man' x 2.
Starlight - Punching air in front à la Let's Dance.
Mad World - No belt, just falsetto.
Slow Ride - Black jock strap, 'Finally!', another black piece of underwear swung & flung, white jock strap given to Allison.
David Bowie Medley - 'I'll dance with you two'.

Newark 1

Whole Lotta Love - No chop & big thrust at 'every inch', excited legs, stellar high notes.
Starlight - falsetto not great.
Mad World - No belt at 'look right through me'.
Slow Ride - Pink tassled thing like curtain tie-back, 'What the f- is this?', cracking up.
David Bowie Medley - Slow strip, black bra, 'run with you two', hid behind hand, removed earpiece, saved voice at end.

Atlantic City

Seeing as I'm more than half the tour behind, I'm only going to add a couple of words for the salient parts of the set. Hope this will help you search for the right video in the future for when you wonder, 'Where was it that Adam ...?'

Hair swept up and back à la Elvis.

Whole Lotta Love - Lots of jacking off the mic, 'baby', went for it vocally.
Starlight - Smiles, adjusting collar, a little trouble going into falsetto, 'revelayee-ayee-aytions'.
Mad World - Missing belt at the crescendo.
Slow Ride - Commented on loving a fan's sign, magenta bra.
David Bowie Medley - White bra, extra twirl.

Thursday, 10 September 2009

Good Morning Star

As I sat in the hospital waiting to find out what was wrong with my mother, I was expecting a few days' stay as what had happened on previous occasions. I assumed she would be treated and feel better before being allowed to return home. With this assumption, my mind drifted towards the minor inconvenience of being interrupted just as I'd managed to get this blog all up-to-date. I wondered, as I did during the competition, about everything from the arrangement to the staging to the clothes, hair and makeup for the GMA performance. It had been a long time since I'd last had that excited feeling of anticipation and I'd miss following it in real-time. That was before I was given those devastating words that ripped me to shreds. We were in hospital for a few days but my mother never got to return home. Everything else was shot to insignificance and I turned against this obsession.

The GMA Starlight was the first performance I missed after that fateful journey to hospital and my guilt didn't allow me to watch it until a considerable time later, but here goes:

The question was always going to be how Adam would make the song work for the morning crowd as it would be an important opportunity to widen his appeal to a different audience. I correctly guessed that we would see a relatively minimalist Adam with an acoustic arrangement. His look was fairly casual but still fashion-conscious. He sounded very high at the start and there was a slight stutter, but the vocals were pure and smooth without marked losses in volume when sliding into falsetto. We got to hear some of his gorgeous grainy lower register, and also a different singing style where he added an ascending breath between notes. I don't know what the technical term for it is, but there are a couple of examples between 'will never' at 1:43 and 'not to' at 1:48. The song bobbed along merrily - albeit a little rushed - and was bright, conjuring a relaxed and happy feeling on a sunny day. This was partly achieved by the guitar slapping and the keyboard sound resembling a steelpan's, which gave it a very different vibe to the to concert version. I think it's slightly at odds with the meaning of the song lyrics though, which are more on the sombre side. I suppose Starlight is a little too heavy for the morning and needed an injection of cheer. And cheer it did for all those hungry for something new.

Friday, 4 September 2009

Moderate Fandom

Everything has changed; I feel old with a large part of me having died and with it much of the passion and enthusiasm that went into this obsession. Getting up each day is a struggle and I'm fragile like a bubble. Every time someone reaches out to me, they burst it so I can no longer keep it together and the tears pour out. My mind seems to be my worst enemy, constantly taunting me and my heart is betraying me with nothing but anguish. The violent jolt has forced me to put things into stark perspective and I've come to look at this silly obsession with coldness as I think of all the different and better ways my efforts could have been expended. Instead of being glued to this computer I could have expressed more appreciation, offered words of comfort or spent more precious time at my mother's side. But I also know that even if I'd done those things, there's always more that could have been done that I'd now be wishing for instead.

I've always been a believer that if there's nothing to enjoy, there's little point in living but this was one of those pleasures that developed into a distraction that was all-consuming, blinkering me from the important things. In times of difficulty, we return to the familiar, and despite my revulsion and wanting to walk away from it once and for all, I find myself back here. Instead of escapism towards fun and excitement though, I come here to be anaesthetised. Maybe that's what this was about all along; I'd already started grieving long before I began this blog.

I feel like I'm over this obsession but have decided to finish covering the tour, probably in a reduced and mechanical capacity as I'm so far behind and feel little inspiration or desire to write. Expect a video collection for each stop and a finished video edit that I was in the middle of doing. Perhaps there'll be a few more tour videos if I get back into the flow of things and find my feet again, so let's see how things go.

Thank you all for reaching out to me with your kind support and patience through this most painful time. You have given me strength for which I am grateful.