Starstruck | Interview with Adam Lambert

Adam Lambert regulary features on MarkMeets as we have always supported the star and have met him numerous times (He is a truly a gent and just as fab as he appears on TV).

Adam Lambert is in a league of his own. Vocal perfection“, said Music journalist Mark Boardman.

What can the viewers expect from this new entertainment show?

I think that everybody that watches Starstruck is going to have a great time. There’s something for everybody, there’s something for all music tastes and all ages which is really exciting and I think that it’s really easy to see yourself in the show. I mean these are regular people that work regular day jobs that are getting to live out their fantasy which is really exciting.

What do you think you will bring to the judging panel?

I’m hoping to have a really good time with my fellow judges. I mean I’ve been looking forward to this for a year and the idea of celebrating these artists with members of the public just seems like a good time. I’m looking to have some laughs, joy and you know after the year that we have had with COVID-19, everyone just wants to enjoy themselves and connect and I think this is a great way to do it.

What has it been like getting to know your fellow judges?

It’s a really warm, good vibe, we are all very appreciative of each other’s humour and experience. It feels like there’s a mutual respect which is really lovely and Olly included as the host. It’s just a nice energy. I’m really enjoying it.

What are you looking for in the contestants’ performances?

I think to be able to emulate the way someone sings a song takes some studying. You have to listen really carefully and recreate it the best you can. So, I’m listening to the way that they sing the songs, the stage presence, I’m looking to see if they have star quality or not. If you are trying to convince me that you are a famous artist, one of those artists is who they are because they are owning it. They’ve made it so I want to believe that I’m watching a world famous star.

Can you give us a teaser on some of the performances you have seen so far?

I have been really impressed by the talent. We’ve seen the talent competition shows on television for the last decade, it’s a bit of that energy but it’s more specific, you’re asking someone to sound like someone we all know already – it’s a particular talent. It’s a new type of talent to celebrate and to kind of zero in on. I’ve been really impressed by the vocals on a lot of these groups. A lot of the artists that we are tackling are not just pop stars, they are known for their look, they are also pop stars known for their vocal ability. It’s exciting to see people step up to the challenge.

What kind of judge are you?

I think I am a fair judge. I try to be as honest as possible. I like trying to balance out any bad news with good news because I think that there’s always two ways to look at something. You know there’s always a piece of advice for them to take away and maybe a bit of constructive criticism. Obviously what sets this show apart from a lot of the other shows is we are not dangling a record contract at the finish line, it’s purely just for the joy of becoming this artist. I think that kind of affects the approach to the judging as well. I keep that in mind and you know the other thing is, the contestants are coming to us to honour the specific artists. It’s something that they come to the show wanting to do. The teams have really studied these artists for years, some of them.

Why did you want to be a part of Starstruck?

I definitely have found some similarities when I work with Queen. I have actually worked really hard to make sure that I don’t imitate Freddie out of respect and to go along with Brian May and Roger Taylor’s wishes. That’s not what they wanted and that’s not what I do. But in trying to learn how to not impersonate somebody, that also teaches you how to impersonate somebody. It’s like a skill that you become familiar with and you know we always say make the record your own and what I love about this is it’s a flip. It’s don’t make the record your own, make it sound like what we all love which is really fun. It’s a really fun challenge and I just thought it would be really interesting to watch people transform. I love a makeover, it’s one of my favourite things to see and you know the fact that a lot of these people are regular folk. They are not professionals. I like seeing people live out their dream for a night. I think there’s real joy and healing with that and like I said it’s been a crazy year or two to be able to share in that celebration.

If you could transform yourself into another music icon, who would it be and why?

I’ve been told that in some light, I resemble Elvis. I always take it as a great compliment. I would give that a go. I think I could probably pull that off. I can see myself wearing one of those jumpsuits with all the rhinestones all over it. That’s a vibe.

Can you talk us through the concept of the show?

I think the format of the show is really fun because every episode you get to see somebody go through and position themselves to be in the final. You get that rush watching a contestant you have been rooting for from the beginning episode to the end which is really fun. The teams come on, there are three members of each team, that are all paying tribute to the same artist at the same time. The songs are broken up into three parts as a trio and there’s four artists that are being honoured for every episode so we as judges have to take a look at everything and then we have to make the very difficult decision: who is the strongest team? Once we have picked the strongest team, there is a sing off between the members of the team. The audience at home gets to vote on who their favourite is. What’s really exciting about that as well is, it’s partially up to us and it’s partially up to the public which I think is just a really lovely way to have people involved in the show.

Do you all agree or are there times you don’t?

There’s definitely been a difference of opinion but we are really nice to each other. It’s very respectful and diplomatic. We tend to all get there in the end – we have a good discussion. Jason, Beverley, Sheridan are all really really intelligent, experienced performers. I think we all bring some really interesting perspectives to the table. Beverley and I tend to focus in on the singing technique and the vocals and I think Sheridan is emotionally connected and wants to feel something and these icons know how to do that so that’s an important element as well. And Jason really appreciates the overall study I think. I think seeing these people work really hard is something that Jason really recognises.

What advice would you give to those people coming out on stage for the first time?

I’ve been really impressed by that. I have to stop and remind myself these are not necessarily professionals because they’ve learnt staging, they have some choreography sometimes, they are in these outfits. They are really taking on a tall order. On a very big polished, high end TV set so I have actually been surprised that I haven’t seen more nerves. People seem very ready which is really cool.

Have you been surprised by the talent?

I have absolutely been surprised by the talent and surprised by the preparedness. I think talent is one element but being an amazing performer takes more than just talent. It takes focus, hard work, rehearsal and that’s on top of the vocal talent. I’ve been really blown away.

Have you ever been starstruck?

I have definitely been starstruck. I remember meeting Madonna at one point and just feeling like it was just a surreal moment. I think when you grow up with an artist you remember from your childhood, seeing them on TV and having them make a strong impression on you, I think those are the ones I tend to be the most starstruck around.

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Dan Dunn
Dan Dunn
Executive Managing editor

Editor and Admin at MarkMeets since Nov 2012. Columnist, reviewer and entertainment writer and oversees all of the section's news, features and interviews. During his career, he has written for numerous magazines.

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