Adam Lambert struggled with early fame

Adam Lambert finished as the runner-up on ‘American Idol’ in 2009.

Adam Lambert found fame “really overwhelming” at the start.

The 37-year-old singer shot to stardom when he finished as runner-up on the eighth season of ‘American Idol’ in 2009, and has said he struggled to come to terms with his level of fame at first because it all happened so “fast”.

“I was really overwhelmed in the very beginning. ‘American Idol’ was so fast.”

— Adam Lambert

Adam came out as gay when he was a teenager before he found fame, and says being a voice for the LGBTQ community after ‘American Idol’ put extra pressure on him to “be an educator”.

He said: “I was really overwhelmed in the very beginning. ‘American Idol’ was so fast. All of a sudden, I was on magazine covers. I was dealing with the personal adjustment I had to make, and then on top of it, there was all this energy behind being the gay guy doing it. I knew I was comfortable saying, ‘Yes, I’m gay.’ But educating the masses? I didn’t get into this business to be an educator. I just wanted to wear glitter and sing.”

The Ghost Town singer says there “weren’t a lot” of LGBTQ people in mainstream media when he found fame, and so he was asked a lot of questions about his sexuality.

And although he says he was happy to talk about it, he didn’t want it to become his defining factor.

Speaking to Billboard magazine for their 2019 Pride issue, he added: “When I started my professional journey, in the mainstream media there weren’t a lot of [queer] people, so that was the thing the media wanted to talk about. I loved talking about it, but at the same time I was like, ‘Can it not precede me?'”