For me, the moment of the American Idol finale was Adam Lambert singing with Brian May and Roger Taylor of Queen. I had been wanting Lambert to give “Bohemian Rhapsody” a shot all season, knowing he was much better-suited to pull it off than Michael Johns did during last season. It was a bold move by Johns and he didn’t sound too bad, although I see Lambert as a much better match for Freddie Mercury.
Lambert’s performance with Queen seemed to “click,” and it appears that May and Taylor, as well as Lambert, feel that there may be something worth exploring there.
The appearance of Lambert on Fox’s morning show Fox And Friends was the first indication I saw that there may be talks going on between Lambert and Queen. When pressed about whether he had been talking to Queen about working with them, Lambert said that he had to “plead the 5th” on that subject.
As one might expect, that statement set the rumor mill spinning at full speed. Rolling Stone magazine managed to reach Brian May via e-mail regarding the issue, and although he was not ready to confirm or deny any plans to have Lambert replace recently-departed frontman Paul Rodgers, May responding by saying: “Amongst all that furor, there wasn’t really a quiet moment to talk, but [drummer Roger Taylor] and I are definitely hoping to have a meaningful conversation with him at some point. It’s not like we, as Queen, would rush into coalescing with another singer just like that. It isn’t that easy. But I’d certainly like to work with Adam. That is one amazing instrument he has there.”
Will Adam Lambert end up as the new Queen frontman? In a conference call with reporters, Lambert readily admits that Queen was one of his all-time favorite bands and said he would love to work with them. There surely are a lot of hoops to jump through before we hear any definitive word on whether Lambert joins up with Queen, so it is likely to be a while. He is, however, probably the best candidate for the job that American Idol has yet produced.
In addition to his performance with Queen, Lambert also put on quite the glam-rock show with KISS, which all participants seemed to enjoy as well, but now there is some talk that Gene Simmons has said that Lambert is not well-suited to be a rock singer.
Rolling Stone is reporting that Simmons has posted comments on his personal website that read as follows: “Respectfully, I don’t think Adam is a rock singer. He sounds much more convincing singing ballads and Broadway shows. His voice doesn’t seem to have a ‘rock quality.’ But, I’m sure he’s going to do just fine.”
What’s a little odd is that the link from the Rolling Stone article to Gene Simmons’ personal website is broken, but that could just be a webmaster typo. I visited Simmons’ personal website myself and was able to find that exact quote from Simmons in response to a question about Lambert from a fan.
When questioned later by another reader and asked for a clarification, Simmons responded by saying: “Adam is a great singer. He would be great in Queen. Like Freddie Mercury. But Mercury wouldn’t work in the Stones or KISS. Nor would Mick Jagger work in Queen. Got it?”
I guess what we can take away from that is that Simmons thinks Lambert would be a good rock singer for Queen, but not for KISS or the Rolling Stones. I think Adam Lambert would be OK with that.