Adam Lambert has revealed his androgynous style wasn’t always accepted by the music industry.
On the eight anniversary of his debut album, For Your Entertainment, the former American Idol contestant recalled how he was told by music executives to strip back his glam rock look to appeal to a wider audience.
The original cover for the record featured Adam rocking an androgynous look, including intense eye makeup and long blue hair, but some retailers refused to stock the CD as it was deemed too controversial.
That’s when music execs tried to tone down his signature style by releasing a second cover for the album – in this one, he’s still wearing makeup, but his hair is black and much of his face is covered up by his hand.
“I was feeling my gender fluid (and fully photoshopped) glam rock fantasy,” he wrote on Instagram.
“The powers that be released a second cover for retailers who felt ‘uncomfortable’ with the original (even though I was still fully painted).”
He added: “Seems so funny now… but just 8 years ago it was a much different climate.”
Despite initial concerns over his flamboyant appearance, Adam went on to become the first openly gay recording artist to have a number one album on the US charts with his sophomore release Trespassing.
“Look at all the gender fluidity stuff that’s become the conservation right now. The kids coming up right now are less hung up on stereotypical gender roles,” he recently told the Express & Star on the same topic.
“It’s funny, because I look at kids rocking some nail polish or a little glitter and I’m like, ‘Do you guys think this is new? I’ve been doing this for years’.”