Adam Lambert: ‘Tricky to balance’ coming out with pop career
The Queen singer and American Idol star talks about coming out and how things have changed for LGBT artists.
Adam Lambert has told how he struggled to balance his pop career with coming out.
The American Idol star, who came out publicly as gay in a 2009 Rolling Stone interview, told an audience at Mosaic LGBT youth centre: “Part of me was like this is cool, this is important and I’m comfortable with my sexuality.
“But it also became weird because I also sing, and I have a record that I’d love you to hear. It was tricky to balance it.”
The 36-year-old, who starts a European tour with Queen next week, said his record label had “concerns” about his first album cover as he was asked about making unpopular decisions.
He said: “The minute you get into commercial pop music you’re already compromising, because what you’re trying to do is make something the majority of people will like.
“For example, my first album. I loved the album cover (made up, beautiful, glam picture), but my label were worried about how it was going to connect, because it had to go on sale in places like Walmart.
“Like how can you put that on the shelf and expect a regular mum and dad or kids, who watched you on American Idol, to connect with that and pick it up and feel comfortable.
“I understood that, but I loved the artwork, so I kept it as it was. It was a hard journey with that cover but I’m glad I made that decision.”
When asked if things have changed since he came out, he said: “We’re at a point where other artists are out, and the landscape has changed.
“The development of social media and streaming is also why we’re seeing so many more successful queer artists now, because not all decisions are being made by the suits.”
Lambert has been an advocate for LGBT youth throughout his career.
In 2011 he released a charity single benefiting The Trevor Project’s anti-suicide campaign.
Lambert found fame after he finished in second place on American Idol in 2009, where he was the first contestant to receive a standing ovation from Simon Cowell.
He has released three albums as a solo artist.
He first appeared with Queen on American Idol. He began touring with them in 2011.
They are due to have a Las Vegas residency together in September.