Sunday, November 8, 2009

WHATEVER HAPPENED TO ....

I wondered about Reggie Jackson, when we were watching the World Series. We saw Reggie briefly during the final game that the Yankees won.

After a fantastic career, he lives in the idyllically beautiful city of Carmel in California -- he's in baseball's Hall of Fame, and continues to be a special advisor to the Yankees. Yep, he's older, but he's still a big name -- Reggie's doing okay. And that made me wonder ...

What about Adam Lambert? He's an astoundingly talented, good-looking 27-year-old singer-dancer, who almost became, probably should have become, the American Idol of 2009.

I'm not a baseball fan, or a pop music fan -- but, having been a performer, married to a well- known actor, (and we have an actor son), it's natural for me to wonder how Adam Lambert's doing these days?

Even when Adam lost, he was gracious. And why not? Because of his performances on Idol, he already had a record contract, and agents, managers waiting to handle him.

Have a look -- I can't help wondering what will happen to the marvelous confidence, the full-out energy of a socko performer like Adam Lambert?

Throughout the Idol shows leading up to the finale, Adam's singing soared, hit the top of the tip-top of the power meter -- there wasn't one, but that's what his bearing, his dancing, his final note at the end of his number, felt like to me. BUT ...

He seemed to go beyond performing, into a personal display of himself sexually. His smile, his half-closed eyes, the feeling he projected was huge -- and too much.

I've listened to him and watched him, and looked at other clips on YouTube. His voice, his vocal rendition of each song, his dance movements were far better than any other performer I've seen on any Idol show. But when Adam is singing and gyrating, he seems to be enjoying himself in a sexual personal trance.

(I couldn't help thinking -- he's like a stripper, a guy selling himself to customers for sex. And the makeup he was wearing -- was it eye liner, eye shadow, plus mascara? And his tight pants, all that jewelry -- is he gay?")

It doesn't matter. He was stunning. He got huge ovations, and generated enormous excitement every time he sang. Maybe the producers, the judges, or the director got confused by the audiences adulation and didn't want to interfere with his performances. But I think Adam Lambert would have won if some had told him "You're working too hard. Less is more."

Shortly after that final show, Lambert confirmed that he was homosexual in a Rolling Stone cover story interview.

Right now Adam Lambert's working -- he's on an Idol tour. He's got an album coming out. He obviously has a manager, promoter, and press agent. Will we hear more, and see more and more of this guy?

Probably yes; maybe for a while. . But I think the event that's launched him will send him in a wrong direction. His openness about his homosexuality, combined with the "too much, too intense " feeling you get as he's singing, will send him ... Where?

Porn? A sexy role in a film? Maybe, but probably not the leading man "love interest." And then, maybe other offers will take him into producing, agenting, or performing in night clubs for a few years? Maybe he'll buy a club, and be the star, performing in his own cabaret?

What would I advise the talented Adam Lambert to do?

A few years ago, when I was rehearsing an up-and-coming dance group, teaching six of their dancers my "Haunted Moments" choreography, I didn't hire "Marge" who was dancing with them.

Her feelings were hurt. She asked me why, so I told her. (Marge was chunky, stocky-looking -- there was nothing exciting or compelling to watch when she was dancing.) I said, "It's your weight. You're not fat -- your weight is natural and right for your body." Knowing that she played the guitar, I added, "You might be successful as a folk singer, but not as a dancer."

Whew -- she hates me -- hated me for years and maybe even now, Marge refers to me as the person who "ruined her life."

Would I tell Adam Lambert to quit?

I'd say "Change your look -- your clothes, your makeup, for a while. And try doing LESS -- go for simplicity. Your voice and handsomeness needs no embellishments. Find a night club -- perform there and build a fan base like Bette Midler did. Don't let yourself be labeled as a gay or straight performer! You're unique -- be what you are!"

In my dancing days -- when I was straining my feet and turnout in an effort to look like a ballerina -- oh my, I wish someone had told me that.

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