This past week, I finished an American Idol marathon for season eight in three days, excluding the auditions. Since the memories of Adam Lambert’s brilliant performances are still fresh in my mind, I thought it’d be a perfect opportunity to rank my top five performances of his from the show. I’m only doing five because there were 15 performances total and two of them were for the same song, so I didn’t have much to choose from.
Lambert obviously isn’t bitter about losing American Idol, so why should we be upset? Despite being runner-up, he’s doing great in his music career (three of his four studio albums made the Billboard 200) and is the current frontman for Queen. I’ll just say this, the only reason why Kris Allen won was because he was good-looking; that seems to be a common reason for a lot of the male winners of Idol. But anyways, without further ado, let’s get on with the music!
5. ”Feeling Good” from The Roar of the Greasepaint – The Smell of the Crowd – Top 5
“Feeling Good” was covered so many times on American Idol, but no one had the confidence quite like Lambert. His strut down the stairway was so breath-taking that Simon Cowell forbade Ryan Seacrest from using it ever again! I love the intensity from this performance; Randy Jackson complained that it was a bit theatrical, but that’s who Lambert was! His theater chops made him the performer that he is today. There were some low notes, there were some high notes, but he never overdid it on “Feeling Good.”
4. ”If I Can’t Have You” by the Bee Gees – Top 7 (second week)
Lambert performed the Bee Gees’ “If I Can’t Have You” for disco week and it wasn’t corny! I’m not a disco person, so I was a bit worried on how disco week was going to turn out; there were a few bad performances that night, believe me. But thankfully, Lambert’s performance was brilliant and heartfelt. I love that he slowed the song down and made it more dramatic because the original version is very cheesy. I mean look at the Bee Gees, I’d be embarrassed to listen to those guys! When Lambert slowed it down, he allowed the audience to focus on the lyrics and he still delivered the high notes that we know and love!
3. ”Cryin’” by Aerosmith – Top 3 (Contestant’s Choice)
It’s a shame we never got to see Steven Tyler’s reaction to Lambert’s performance of “Cryin;’” Tyler didn’t become a judge on Idol until season 10. I think Lambert’s vocal range is even better than Tyler’s. I’ve heard the song before, but I wasn’t wowed by it until I heard Lambert’s version. Again, it was heartfelt and emotional; the backup singers weren’t necessary, but that’s a slight criticism. I was just happy Lambert sang another rock song on the show.
2. ”The Tracks of My Tears” by Smokey Robinson – Top 10
Lambert just grew on the show week after week, but there were some moments early on where he really shined, for Motown week especially. Smokey Robinson even said that he’s never heard a version of his song quite like Lambert’s. Then, after his performance on the show, Robinson smiled and gave Lambert his approval, it was so beautiful. I love that Lambert stripped it down and went all acoustic for “The Tracks of My Tears” because again, it allowed the audience to focus on the lyrics. But, it also showed off Lambert’s falsetto; his voice was very controlled in this performance and I loved it!
1. ”Whole Lotta Love” by Led Zeppelin – Top 4
I don’t really need to explain why “Whole Lotta Love” is my favorite performance of Lambert’s, but I’ll do it anyway! His voice is so out of this world that I literally got chills from this performance. He had the attitude, the wardrobe, the dramatic eyes, and the pipes to pull off Led Zeppelin. Slash, the group mentor for the week, definitely approved and was shocked himself! “Whole Lotta Love” was an historical moment for Lambert because that performance caught Brian May and Roger Taylor’s attention, then they checked him out at the American Idol finale and they’ve kept in touch since.
Lambert was my favorite contestant from season eight, so I was devastated when he lost American Idol to some average dude. Thankfully, he has gone on to do unbelievable things without them. Like I mentioned in The Tragic Story of ‘American Idol’ post, the American Idol team would’ve sent Lambert on a completely wrong path for him, where they would’ve turned him into something that he’s not. What was awesome about Lambert was that he did everything from disco, pop, rock, jazz, ballads, and oddly enough, country! Thanks to YouTube, we can relive his Idol performances and admire his mad vocal pipes.
Comment below your favorite American Idol performance from Adam Lambert!
Take care and see ya real soon!