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Evil Adam Lambert slams sweet Susan Boyle? Not exactly

Adam books What is it with celebrity interviews lately? Must everyone take things out of context?

Adam Lambert spoke with U.K. magazine Gay Times for its March issue, in an interview excerpted here. Yes, he criticizes Susan Boyle's album. But does he "slam Susan Boyle"? Was the point of the interview to trash her album and extend his "15 minutes of fame"? Has he "gone on the record to tell everyone what he really thinks" and blame SuBo's album for his failure? Hardly. 

[A]dam answered his critics when For Your Entertainment sold 200,000 copies in its first week on sale, charting above new releases from Rihanna and Lady Gaga, albeit outsold by a certain Scottish lassie… 

"I know, if only it weren’t for Susan Boyle!” Adam laughs. “I’m happy for her success, but that album is terrible. Wild Horses is the one that made me laugh the hardest. I just died when I heard it, I was crying with laughter. It was the most horrendous, sacrilegious treatment of that song! 

"Still, when my album charted, it was validating. I was feeling [a] bit attacked, like I had to vindicate something. I thought: ‘Wow, look what I did.'"

Does that read as if the Real Adam Lambert was twirling his villainous imaginary mustache, or shaking a fist at the heavens, and, in the spirit of "Scooby-Doo," cursing, "If only it hadn't been for Susan Boyle and those meddling kids! I would've gotten away with it!"

Or does it read as if, perhaps ...

... the singer is responding to a fact-based mention that Boyle's first album debuted higher than Lambert's? Did the reporter note that Adam laughed at that moment perhaps to make it clear that the glittery one wasn't cursing his non-competition?

You decide.

(Of course, objectively, "I'm happy for her success" is about as horrific as an attack on another human can get. We realize that brutality might sway your interpretation.)

Susan boyle Now let's take a trip into the irony department, with a bit pulled from higher up in the interview, before the alleged Boyle-clubbing section. (Shock! His album comments aren't actually the lead of the story! Which you'd never know if you did a Google news search of the two names right now!)

These are the words of Gay Times writer Jamie Taberrer; the bold emphasis is mine:

From his forgivable penchant for guyliner (don’t pretend you haven’t been there), to his opinion-polarising album cover, to his controversial performance at last year’s American Music Awards (in which he kissed and groped a male member of his band, inducing thousands of complaints to TV network ABC) it seems Adam can’t bat a mascara-clad eyelash without offending somebody. The irony being, of course, that Adam’s really not shocking underneath it all. In fact, he’s a just a normal guy who – shock, horror! – is actually WILLING to talk about his sexuality.

Boyle and Lambert were both pop-culture sensations on their respective continents and beyond, and were both runners-up in high-profile singing competitions -- so bringing up the comparison isn't shocking. And even if, like me, you have no problem with SuBo, giggling at her take on the Rolling Stones' "Wild Horses" is hardly out-of-the-box thinking.

Today's flurry sounds suspiciously like widely repeated reports of Adam putting "one of his own fans on blast" for talking on a cellphone during his performance (If what Adam actually said was an attack, a lot of what's on the Ministry probably violates Geneva Conventions). Despite the American Music Awards uproar, Lambert has a track record of good manners and general decency toward others. So of course the search is on for the story or headline that "reveals" some heretofore unseen mean and nasty "real Adam" lurking under the surface.

"Adam's not really shocking at all" doesn't drive Internet traffic like "Adam's picking on poor sweet Susan Boyle" does.

Context, people. It's all about the context. Call me when there's video of Adam clubbing a baby seal, and then maybe I'll believe he's a jerk.


-- Christie D'Zurilla

P.S. Scroll down for a side-by-side comparison of the Stones' original "Wild Horses" recording and Boyle's updated version.

Here's Susan's:

And here it is as envisioned by the Rolling Stones:

Photos: Yeah, the charity work (by both singers) is clearly just a cover-up -- Adam Lambert, in partnership with education charity DonorsChoose.org, delivers music books to a class at Belvedere Middle School on Feb. 18, 2010, in Los Angeles, top. Susan Boyle sings in Copenhagen on Jan. 30, 2010, at a concert to raise money for women in Africa and for earthquake victims in Haiti. Credits: Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times, top; Casper Christoffersen / EPA, right.

We're fans. And we're out about it. Step into the Ministry's glittery gallery of all things Adam Lambert: 

Happy birthday Adam Lambert! Time for a news-link party

Adam Lambert, Justin Bieber in VMan [pictures and video]

Art of Elysium: Adam Lambert parties in a paved paradise (designed by Shepard Fairey)

Adam Lambert: An ex-fat, ex-closeted, ex-redhead who's 'very normal' on 'Chelsea Lately. Funny too.

Adam Lambert, shiny and fab for Gridlock 2009 (with a flashback to NYE 2008 at Upright Cabaret)

Barbara Walters' '10 Most Fascinating People of 2009': observations, and a poll

PREACH IT! Just for you, ABC, a post about Adam Lambert that is Totally Not Gay

Poll: Adam Lambert's AMA performance: provocative or porn?

Want the headlines? Follow the Ministry of Gossip on Facebook and Twitter (we're @LATcelebs on Twitter).  We just got a new address on Facebook -- find us at facebook.com/ministryofgossip.

Comments () | Archives (135)

THANK YOU! Finally a SANE response to that interview. Does anyone REALLY believe Adam was being mean or hateful saying what he did? I, personally, agree with him about SuBo's "Wild Horses"...IT'S TERRIBLE!!! The bloggers and posts that are running the "bash" version of the article are just using Adam's name so they can steer people to their site...they know that when Adam's name is googled it gets MILLIONS of hits. Thanks again for some sanity!

Thank you so much for this article. Everything Adam says seems to get disected and taken out of context...thank you for being on his side!! Nobody seems to remember how on idol he was so respectful and polite to everyone, he would never never make hurtful comments about someone.

Amen! Exactly! Right on! Right! Yes! Case closed!

FINALLY a lone voice of sanity. Preach!

And to add insult to injury with all the sensationalized headlines and tabloid style writing of some media outlets, I'm guessing the original interviewer didn't even get the quotes right. Adam tweeted, "Oh joy! MisQuoted again... Becoming quite funny actually." A bit vague Adam, but I'd be willing to bet he was referring to this whole ridiculous SuBo brouhaha.

Thank you for a fair report. Context is important. Looks like many were just waiting for a chance to attack and smear Adam. This is a great example of why we need real newspapers and real journalists.

Eh, the comment was still mean. He called her song & album laughable. I think people were more shocked at the lack of tact. But he's not the first artist to be rude to other artists. Plus-I don't see people getting in an uproar about this all over the interweb. Just a few blogs. If I didn't read those blogs I wouldn't know about it.

Adam isn't perfect, and people rushing to his defense every time he says something tactless isn't going to do him any good, or you any good if you do it. Expect him to be better and maybe he will be.

I loved the LA Times when I lived in LA and now that I've moved across the country to NYC I still love the LA Times. It's good fact-based and fair reporting like this piece that make you stand out time and time again. Bravo. In every interview I've read or listened to, Lambert seems like a nice guy. And certainly he's a talented guy! Thanks for looking behind the nonsense and getting to the heart of the matter.


People have taken his words so out of context that they are in space.

Adam is the most nicest, kindest people to ever grace this planet and I am proud to be a fan of his.

Honestly, some Americans embarrass themselves. They have an outstanding talent in their country and all they can do is bash him while flailing over an average voiced, charisma bypass.

The saddest thing is that they think the UK loves Susan Boyle. The vast majority of people in the UK would be happy to not see or hear Susan Boyle again. They are heartily sick of her and her overrated mediocrity.

For what it's worth, I'm not going to pretend that I don't agree with the comments but I don't think Adam Lambert made them as they were printed. For a start, they are phrased in British English terminology and, secondly, the magazine that they appeared in has been one of Adam's worst critics since early on in last season's American Idol and were going to jump at the first opportunity to throw Adam under the bus in the UK. If that meant padding out his statements (with incidentally almost the exact words that the writer of the piece has himself previously used to describe Susan's album and single and his reaction to hearing them) then so be it. The vast majority of the UK media and the industry sees poor Susan Boyle as a joke. If Adam did actually say what is attributed to him (and for the reasons I have already explained, I doubt it, as he would have to coincidentally be of exactly the same opinion as the writer of the article and, even more coincidentally, phrase it the same way) and this had been just about any other UK publication, they would have taken it as an opportunity to ridicule Susan but not this magazine. It took it as an opportunity to continue the Adam bashing it had started during AI and the Adam witchhunt that it started as soon as it became known that Adam was going to be promoted internationally and not their preferred one.

If Susan Boyle fans have an issue with what was said, I think they need to take it up with the writer of the article.

Let's see:

1. He says: "I'm happy for her success" That's a gratuitous statement; It's called damning with faint praise.

2. He calls her album "terrible" No dispute about that. But somehow that's not bashing?

3. He says of a song she put her heart and soul into: "I just died when I heard it, I was crying with laughter. It was the most horrendous." That's not bashing?

4. He wouldn't' have bothered to even address the subject if Boyle's album had not outsold his. So to say the two are unrelated is ridiculous.

To say (now), he didn't mean it or was kidding, then why say it at all.

Adam is certainly entitled to an opinion. But like everyone else, he needs to own up to it when he "bashes" someone, instead of claiming that he was "misquoted" or misinterpreted."

Or he should apologize.

Instead he gets a free pass from this blog and all his fans.

Not to mention that Adam apparently is claiming to be misquoted, though he (regrettably, IMO) wasn't terribly specific in a Twitter post today:

"Oh joy! MisQuoted again... Becoming quite funny actually."

So, LA Times, surely you've got connections: can't you call up Adam and ask him what he said, what he meant, and what he thinks now?

Considering how much they love to troll out her sales figures as a weapon and defence for everything, Susan Boyle's fans come across as incredibly insecure whenever the slightest thing is said or reported to be said against her.

What's that all about? Are they as aware as anyone else that sales of the first album are going to mean precious little to Susan's chances of getting a second album as soon as the record company and management see that the novelty factor is gone. Particularly as she doesn't have the support of the media or industry in her own country.

I wish her luck but it could be that she will need to move to the US to have any form of long-term performing future..

I am relieved to read the comments of somebody who is prepared to look at this whole storm in a teacup with some rational thought processes, objectivity and a refreshing lack of pack mentality. Thank you for your sanity.

The sooner Adam Lambert crosses the pond to Europe the better, what he has to put up with in the American press is nothing short of disgraceful.

Peggy Noonan springs unwillingly to mind.

Thank you for stating the obvious, it apparently needs to be in print for people to get it.
Adam gets criticized more than anyone I've ever seen, he has done nothing but show his respect for his peers and people who meet him seem to really like him.
Why does he inspire this, what has he actually done to get people so riled up over nothing?

Finally an article that tells it like it is!
Who DOESN'T laugh at that Wild Horses cover anyway? It's hardly revolutionary! It doesn't mean he doesn't respect her as an artist (which he obviously does!). I just think this is one of those instances where the mainstream media outlets and Adam's enemies go together to form an alliance against the rest of the normal-functioning people in the world, because it seems like most individuals have Adam's back on this one.
So again, thank you! Hopefully this article will get picked up on by more gossip sites and Adam won't have any issues with stuck-up SuBo fans when he comes over here to the UK! Besides, PeterA has a point in saying that the article in question has British English terminology, which last time I checked, Adam doesn't use haha!

- Marie

Well, yes..this article is all good, except for the fact that it didn't address the fact that he did't actually say what he was 'quoted' to having said. Someone already gave you what he said on his twitter this morning, so I'm not writing it out again. Of course, he was talking about this, and it has been set straight that he did NOT in fact say THIS word for word. We don't know what he said. But..give me a break people. "I just died when I heard it..." Adam doesn't speak like that...he's much more well-spoken than that. ADAM can actually form a sentence...the writer of that article, ..can't.

Thank you. I don't know why negative press gets more attention than the truth does. Adam is going to the UK soon and that article was an attempt to get fans to dislike him before he even gets there. I'm just disgusted. Everyone that have met him say he is kind and casual, not full of himself.


So you know, do you, that Adam Lambert said what he is quoted as saying exactly as he is quoted as saying it? That is your inference in your post so, pray tell, how do you know? If you don’t know then may I suggest that you don’t go suggesting who should apologise and for what?

Why do you assume that it was Susan Boyle’s album having outsold Adam Lambert’s that spurred the comments? I don’t see him commenting on Andrea Bocelli’s album, do you? The writer of the article erroneously suggests that Adam’s album came in at #2 to Susan’s. If they can’t even get that detail right, why should anyone assume there is any accuracy in the rest of the piece?


Likewise. You know he used the word “laughable” or any of the others in the supposed quote, do you?

I’m sorry, I must have a different interpretation of the word “misquoted”. It must mean something else in America to what it does here in Scotland.

That said, if Adam did say what he is quoted as saying, good for him. I'd love to meet him when he comes to Scotland so I can buy him a drink for saying what so many here think.

THANK YOU!!! Finally a voice of reason and understanding of context. I know Adam's a big boy and can handle himself, but honestly the slants on the recent articles just reek of desperate blogism & hits. I dare not even use the word journalism because sadly, this seems to be a dying profession.

Christie, Thank you for being a voice of reason in the mad house... Everything Mr. Lambert says will be put under a microscope and twisted to suit whatever an individual's agenda is, even if taken out of context - which Adam indicated via twitter today as he tried to lighten the mood a little bit.

No matter what the context, nothing was said about Ms. Boyle personally, and when it comes to music each person is allowed to have his or her own opinion. I am going to focus on the most important thing which is Adam's vocal talent and sexy persona and will be flying-in to see him and his band perform live onstage at Fantasy Springs this Saturday!

@Catherine W -- Christie D'Zurilla here from the blog. I didn't mention Bocelli's album in the No. 2 spot because it did not debut that week, as indicated in the story linked at that point.

I'm not sure if you're referring to this post or to the Gay Times article, however.

To all commenters, let me say that I'm not criticizing the Gay Times article itself -- that's another topic entirely. The focus of this post is on those who would take the GT quotes out of the context of that article, and blow them up to individual "Adam attacks SuBo" stories.


Kudos to Christie! Looks like it takes a LA Times writer to wake people up and point to the stink of lard burning off somebody's frying pan! Earlier this morning, RockStarWeekly (out of Canada) realized they bashed Adam Lambert for nothing and were quick to pull their "article" and headline off their site. As PeterA points out below, the phraseology used in the "original interview" is British, similar wording had been used before and perhaps the author added his own cent or two in order to drive visits to his site with negativity. Unless I hear and see unedited version of the so called interview and hear Adam sneer at SuBo and bash her album, I reserve the right to process my own thoughts in my own head based on previous experience with Adam-trashing media "outlets". Remind me -- how did this whole nonsense started up again?

Brief snippets on Adam have been appearing in the UK press and electronic media since November stating that he would be promoted here in 2010. He appeared on the "Ones to watch in 2010" lists of just about every music publication and newspaper/magazine music editors. An article appeared in one of the most respected newspapers in the UK two weeks ago and another one is due in its most popular tabloid. Several others are planned or already prepared. They have all been positive. His AMA performance was even reported on positively in the UK press, not least because it was a performance that would have been so at home at the Brit Awards. In fact, it would have actually been quite tame by Brit Awards standards. His single is already slated in for radio and video channels playlists from the end of March (in fact, it has already been used as backing in a scene in the UK's most watched soap).

The magazine that this article appeared in is about the only one that I can think of in the UK that has been negative about Adam since American Idol and beyond. The Gay Times has been established since 1984 but relaunched a couple of years ago as a lightweight version of its former self. It doesn't like anything or anyone that is too gay for their liking, preferring to promote straight male celebrities that happen to have a gay following. It really is no surprise that they would write any article about Adam with a negative slant and make any attempt to paint him in a bad light. All this UK media adulation and UK promotion of Adam doesn't sit well with them when the contestant they supported isn't getting any.

Adam has never said that he thinks Susan Boyle's offerings are single or album of the year but there is a far cry from that and the words used in this article. I have to second the poster who said that the wording is very English English and the words are recycled.

By the way, when he first heard Wild Horses, my husband asked if there was something wrong with the aerial in my car as the sound was so shaky, and my cousin, a lifelong Rolling Stones fan, would have paid a bounty on Susan Boyle and Simon Cowell's heads. Believe me, many worse things have been said about Susan Boyle's album and single than those in that article, whoever's words they were.

Thank you, Christie, for putting perspective on such a stupid inferrence. Adam's courage at these moments is truly inspiring and I am so glad that people like you are there to reinforce that there is intelligent life on this planet.

Thank you for bringing some sanity to the story
I’ll believe other posts when I hear a full recording of the interview. He has always been very generous of other artists work and it seems unlikely that he would have been quite as blunt. He may well have said that he didn’t like the music on the CD but surely he’s allowed an opinion. I’ve read a few other reports of the interview and each one seems to have been embellished a little more.

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