EXCLUSIVE: Adele, Adele, Adele. Sony paid for an orchestra to play “Skyfall” with her on stage at the Dolby Theater during the Oscars. That’s because the actual orchestra had to play over at Capitol Records studios. There’ s no room in the actual theater for an orchestra. Only in Los Angeles! Whoever heard of such a thing? Anyway, Adele was magnificent and looked like a million bucks.
So now what? Her “21″ album has sold 10 million copies. She’s been staying in Los Angeles since right before the Grammys, but she’s returning to London shortly. At the Governor’s Ball, Adele and co-writer Paul Epworth were brought right to Barbra Streisand’s A list seating pod, where Barbra was holding court with a clutch of celebs including her pal Donna Karan, songwriting friends (and famed) Marilyn and Alan Bergman, manager Marty Erlichman, John Travolta (with an extremely frightening wig situation–but he is very nice), a frozen-smiled Kelly Preston, and about a hundred well wishers. More than the areas with Oscar winners, everyone wanted to be there.
So there’s Barbra and Adele, the two great divas, sitting on the banquette with Donna Karan–exhausted from dressing everyone–as their mutual friend. Barbra was thrilled to meet Adele. And you can imagine, Adele’s eyes were huge, taking in this scene with one of her idols. But we talked: I asked Adele when she might start working on a new album?
“I’m not sure,” she said. “We’ve been meeting with writers and talking but nothing is happening now. I’m a mother!” she said with a very jolly British lilt. “I’m very into that. Also, I don’t what to write about yet. The last album [had a theme].”
Me: “You could just sing other people’s songs.”
Adele: “I could but I’m a writer. And I’m going to write it.” You also have to imagine that Adele smiles through everything very warmly. She was kind of beaming. She’s absolutely lovely. Very direct, and quite smart. She knows what she’s doing. I hope we see more of her soon, especially in New York.
Meanwhile, Barbra: she sent chills through the theater on “The Way We Were.” She told me: “I did it for Marvin [Hamlisch].” Then she asked me: “How was it?” I told her, uh, ‘it’ was exceptional. Listen to her phrasing, especially at the beginning of the song last night. She lets a note hang, I said. No one else can do it. She nodded in agreement when I mentioned this. Streisand said, “I know. Did it work?” Oh yes, it worked.