GaGa Over Lambert
How was your long holiday weekend? Hope you had something to be grateful for — many great writers and thinkers believe gratitude is the key to happiness, or at least contentment.
I had a nice, low-key Thanksgiving meal with a few loved ones. Oh, and I took little breaks from that to be ravished by two gorgeous young pop stars. They were, of course, Adam Lambert and Lady GaGa. Never knew I’d feel admiration for both.
Lambert’s AMA vocal performance was a strained delivery by a very versatile singer. No doubt he was anticipating every carefully over-choreographed move, including that unerotic man-smooch with a keyboardist and the perfunctory onstage reunion of Adam’s face and another guy’s crotch. As a cheerleader for same-sex whoopee, I wish the whole thing had been… well, hotter.
But in the ensuing bullshit with ”Good Morning America” — a show that much prefers convicted girlfriend beaters over guy snoggers – Lambert wowed me with his lovely rendition of a ditty that’s not heard nearly enough in the public square. It’s called “Fuck You, I’m Not Going to Apologize For Something I Don’t Regret.” (My colleague, Jeff Prince, wants to hear more of that tune, too). For once, that kind of honesty seemed to have a tangible result – the smelling-salts addicted Parents Television Council shockingly backtracked a bit and said GMA “overreacted” with their cancellation. I don’t recall ever hearing self-appointed guardians of media morality implying that censorship is a bad thing. Maybe the Parents are growing up.
As for Lady GaGa: For many years I’ve been underwhelmed by a long line of dance divas/gay icons who have more ambition than talent. As far as I’m concerned, you can erase almost everyone between — and including — Madonna and Britney, with the possible exception of Christina Aguilera. Then the absurdly theatrical GaGa came along with elaborate, witty videos and a trashy pop-loving sensibility that recalls my favorite new wave goddess. She also passes the “live talent” test: Onstage, she can perform vivid, punk-ish acoustic arrangements of her dance hits. Her new CD’s not bad, either.