So Bare, So Good: Bryan Adams Strips His Hits to Their Acoustic Roots
Bryan Adams has been a part of our senior proms, weddings, funerals, and birthday parties for more than 30 years. Over that time, he's made us ponder why he wants to run to us, why we should forgive him, and whether we've ever really loved a woman.
When Adams brings his "Bare Bones Tour" to the Kravis Center on Thursday, it should be an intimate night of acoustic versions of his most powerful singles and occasional deep cuts.
In addition to his music, Adams is a passionate professional photographer and runs a foundation to advance education for children worldwide. Regardless, you'll likely find yourself touched, and Bryan Adams may just save the summer of '11 for you. In a conversation with New Times, Adams remembers Amy Winehouse, breaks down the "Bare Bones" format, and details a photo shoot with the Moz.
New Times: Condolences on the passing of Amy Winehouse, who was your friend. She once stayed with you one holiday when she needed help. How would you describe your friendship?
Bryan Adams: Amy and I worked together when her Back to Black album came out. I photographed her. You can say what you want about her, but one thing Amy was was loyal. She never forgot that I was there for her when she was at her worst.
When preparing for the "Bare Bones Tour," what was it like to visit your music in an acoustic setting? Did it feel as if you had to relearn your songs or sing in a different way?
The thing that is unfamiliar to most people who see this show is the sparseness of the arrangements. However, that sparseness is familiar to me, because all of the songs were written on just a guitar. It was only when the records were made that orchestrations were added. So for me, hearing the songs without the band is getting back to how the songs were originally conceived.
What do you like most about performing the "Bare Bones" shows?
It's rediscovering the music and keeping me excited about touring.
What was it like photographing Morrissey?
It was fun. We were in Rome. I asked him if he'd like to do some shots for my art/fashion mag called Zoo.
Had you always been a fan of his music?
Absolutely, and this was one of the reasons I wanted to work with him.
Did you trade any cooking tips?
I think we chatted about food, but not much. We're both vegetarians.
Love, whether forbidden, spontaneous, or just romantic, is a theme you have shed much light on in your work. Is this something you have always been drawn to — the powerful connection between two people in a caring or romantic way?
I've never thought about it like that. I just work on ideas, and when the time is right, they become songs. I always felt the music that moved me the most wasn't overthought, just simple.
I recently picked "Can't Stop This Thing We Started" and belted it out with all my soul for a karaoke night. So if you were to have a go at karaoke, which song would you like to go after with gusto?
Oh, any song as long as the lyrics are visible.
Lastly, what is the only thing that looks good on you now?
Loving my little [daughter] Bunny more than anything. It's great to be a daddy.
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