What happened to Adam Lambert?

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Adam Lambert was born in 1982 in Indianapolis, Indiana, but his family moved to San Diego when he was still a baby. Even as a child, Lambert dreamed of becoming an entertainer. “I had just started falling in love with musical theater when I was 10,” Lambert mentioned in an interview with The Hot Desk. At that young age, he landed the role of Linus in a local production of “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown.”

This early experience fueled his passion for performance, leading him to undertake voice training and participate in more stage musicals throughout his teenage years. At 19, he secured a job singing on a cruise ship, which he credits with preparing him for a career in show business. “I was so young … I was so green — I hadn’t been through a lot of professional stuff yet, so it was good for me to do a show that long and sing songs so many times over 10 months,” he shared with The Hot Desk. Following this, he appeared in a high-budget 2004 theatrical production of “The Ten Commandments,” working alongside Val Kilmer, who starred as Moses.

A few years later, Lambert sought fame on “American Idol.” His audition for the eighth season of the popular singing competition turned out to be a life-changing experience. In 2009, Lambert auditioned with a stunning a cappella cover of Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody,” immediately capturing the judges’ attention. His theatricality, honed through years of musical theater, made him a fan favorite, and he survived the weekly eliminations with standout performances. The competition came down to Lambert and Kris Allen. During the finale, they performed “We Are the Champions” with Queen members Brian May and Roger Taylor, a performance that would significantly impact Lambert’s future.

In a surprising upset, Allen was declared the winner, but Lambert was widely regarded as the true star. Allen himself was surprised by his victory, admitting, “I had no idea I was going to win … I was not expecting that — and I think you could see that on my face,” he told WTOP News. Despite the loss, Lambert knew his future was secure, having already been told he would be signed to a major label. “I knew I was going to make an album whether or not I won,” he told Entertainment Weekly.

Lambert’s sexuality was a topic of speculation during his “American Idol” run. The whispers intensified when photos of him dressed in drag and kissing another man surfaced online. In response, Lambert told “Access Hollywood” (via ABC News), “I have nothing to hide. I am who I am. And this is about singing … nothing else.” He later confirmed his sexuality in an interview with Rolling Stone, saying, “I don’t think it should be a surprise for anyone to hear that I’m gay. I’m proud of my sexuality. I embrace it. It’s just another part of me.”

Years later, Lambert reflected on his “Idol” experience in a 2023 interview with Variety, suggesting that homophobia might have played a role in his loss. “Probably,” he responded when asked about the possibility.

Shortly after his “American Idol” run, Lambert released his debut album, “For Your Entertainment,” which was generally well-received and earned him a Grammy nomination for the single “Whataya Want From Me.” Lambert expressed his hopes and fears about the album in an interview with Marie Claire, admitting his biggest fear was that people would stop being interested. However, the album’s success, debuting at No. 3 on the Billboard 200, proved otherwise.

In December 2009, Lambert’s performance at the American Music Awards stirred controversy due to its provocative nature, including a same-sex kiss and S&M-themed choreography. The performance led to numerous complaints and the cancellation of several scheduled TV appearances. Reflecting on the performance on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” Lambert admitted, “It was maybe a little too far.”

Despite the controversy, Lambert’s career thrived. His first concert tour, the Glam Nation tour, was a blockbuster, with numerous dates selling out. Lambert aimed to create an atmospheric experience for his audience, mixing dark and light themes with his signature style.

Lambert’s collaboration with Queen began in 2009 during the “American

Idol” finale and blossomed further at the 2011 MTV European Music Awards, where he performed with the band. This led to discussions about a more permanent collaboration. By 2012, Lambert and Queen embarked on a mini-tour, which proved successful and paved the way for more extensive tours in the following years.

In 2012, Lambert released his second album, “Trespassing,” which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Top 200, making him the first openly gay male solo artist to achieve this. Despite the album’s success, Lambert parted ways with his record labels, 19 Recordings and RCA, over creative differences, particularly RCA’s insistence on an ’80s covers album, which Lambert opposed. He later signed with Warner Bros. Records.

Lambert officially joined Queen for a world tour in 2014, billed as Queen + Adam Lambert. The tour was an enormous success, extending into 2015 and expanding his fanbase. Lambert expressed his intent to honor Freddie Mercury’s legacy rather than imitate him, a balance that resonated with fans and critics alike. This partnership continued with subsequent tours and a memorable performance at the 2019 Oscars.

Lambert maintained his solo career alongside his work with Queen. His third album, “The Original High,” released in 2015, showcased a more authentic, stripped-down sound. The album was well-received, with “Ghost Town” being highlighted as a standout single. Lambert embarked on the Original High Tour to support the album, further cementing his solo artist status.

Throughout the years, Lambert continued to juggle his solo work with his role in Queen. In 2016, he returned to his musical theater roots by joining the cast of a TV remake of “The Rocky Horror Picture Show.” His unique partnership with Queen inspired a 2019 documentary, “The Show Must Go On: The Queen + Adam Lambert Story.”

In March 2024, Lambert revealed via Instagram Live that he had lost nearly 60 pounds over eight months using Mounjaro, a weight-loss drug, after experiencing side effects with Ozempic. He noted the positive impact on his mental health, reducing his need for antidepressants.

In late 2023, Lambert co-opened The Wild, an LGBTQ+ nightclub in West Hollywood, and in February 2024, he joined “The Voice Australia” as a coach, coming full circle from being a contestant on “American Idol.” Lambert hinted at more projects and surprises for his fans, promising an exciting year ahead.