Adam Lambert says publicly coming out was an "act of defiance," explaining that as a celebrity being openly queer can be a form of activism, In an interview with BBC Newspromoting his new EP Velvet: Side A, Lambert revisited his choice to be open about his sexuality from the beginining of his career, recalling that the decision was "stressful and it was confusing."
"I was like, 'What am I supposed to do?'" Lambert said.
Looking back, Lambert says he now understands there is "power in coming out." He said, "The act of declaring your sexuality publicly, once you're a public figure, is an act of defiance in some ways, and it's also a form of activism." When Lambert competed on American Idol in 2009, there were far fewer mainstream queer artists. In the interview, he pointed to Sam Smith's popularity as a sign of how much the industry has changed,
"Sam is a really interesting example because they have been able to be fully mainstream," the singer said. "I mean, mums and dads are buying Sam's album. That's a big move, a big step."
Lambert also spoke about the evergreen divisive queer topic of Taylor Swift, who has received plenty of flack for her "You Need to Calm Down" music video, which Lambert made a cameo in. Many have accused Swift of pandering and co-opting queer aesthetics for profit, and Lambert said he "can see both sides of the controversy.'"
The artist said that what "excuses" those critiques is the fact that Swift "called people to action. Lambert said, "She got a ton of signatures on a petition for the Equality Act... That's real action, so it's not just for personal gain. She's putting her money where her mouth is, and I thought that was really admirable."
The follow up to Lambert's EP, Velvet: Side B, is expected out early next year -- collectively, the projects will compose his album Velvet.