If any of you are in a city where Bryan Adams (pictured) is stopping on his acoustic tour, go. I caught him — backed by only his guitar and harmonica — Saturday night in NYC, and it was so good that I left thinking he should release a live album recorded just like that. His 11th studio album, 11, hits Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club exclusively on May 13. Listen to the album cuts of “Oxygen,” “Tonight We Have the Stars,” and “I Thought I’d Seen Everything,” then tell me if Adams’ intimate lyrics and raspy, echo-filled vocals aren’t almost more powerful stripped, as heard here, here, and here.
Adams played the New York Society for Ethical Culture’s 800-seat Concert Hall, a converted church (with cushioned pews) that he referred to as one of the most beautiful places he’s ever performed. Lucky for him, there’s no religious iconography left in the auditorium, because that man would have burned: If not for the fact that he wrote “Heaven,” in two days (!), for the 1983 Christopher-Atkins-stripper movie A Night in Heaven, then because he sings about nothing but sex. I’m sure I’d have earned myself a ticket to his next concert in hell when I wished ill on the man seated behind me — he kept yelling “Musketeer!” because he couldn’t remember the name of the song he was desperately trying to request, “All for Love” off The Three Musketeers soundtrack. But at least those impure thoughts I had during “Run to You” (embedded below, from a March performance at St. James’s Church in London) should have scored me a VIP package:
So, which artists do you think sound even better acoustic? And, in honor of my not being able to control my volume when Adams got to the “And that’s when I met you, yeah” line of “Summer of ’69,” name one lyric you must belt out whenever you hear it.
addCredit(“Bryan Adams: David Munn/WireImage.com”)