Brit Awards 2012: Winner Adele"s vulgar gesture and an ocean of booze

A vulgar gesture and an ocean of booze… Oh so typically BritsDespite swearing on national television, it was Adele who got the multiple apologies yesterdayAttempts to clean up the BRITs seem to have failed miserablyOne Direction's BRIT table seen swamped in champagne

The reaction says everything about Adele’s all-powerful position in British music that, having rudely flicked her middle finger at record company bosses on national television on Tuesday night, she was the one to receive multiple apologies yesterday.

In a chaotic climax to the 2012 Brit Awards, the singer was ‘cut off’ while in the middle of her acceptance speech after winning Album of the Year.

‘Nothing makes me prouder than coming home with six Grammys, then coming to the Brits and winning Album of the Year,’ said Adele. ‘I am so, so proud to be British and to be flying the flag and to be in the same room as all of you.’

Childish: Adele rudely sticks up her middle finger after her speech is cut short

Childish: Adele rudely sticks up her middle finger after her speech is cut short

She opened her mouth to continue, but was stopped by the presenter, actor James Corden, who had been told that they were out of time and needed to cut to Blur’s finale in honour of the band’s Outstanding Contribution to Music award.

‘Can I just say, then, goodbye and I’ll see you next time round,’ she said.

And with that she gave the seated record executives who surrounded the stage a proudly raised middle finger, accompanied by a defiant grimace.

It was enough to leave the most powerful men in the music business choking on their cannon of lamb, and spitting out their swigs of the finest Cotes de Rhone.

Surely she would never have dared make such a crass gesture at the Grammy awards, held in Los Angeles last week, where rather more is expected of the performing talent.

But then the Brit Awards 2012, which featured binge-drinking teenagers, intoxicated superstars and embarrassingly off-key performances, was probably just the right place for the trading of playground insults.

Despite attempts by Brits chairman
David Joseph to make the ceremony cleaner and more professional this
year, it remained a chaotic forum for bad behaviour.

Adele
is usually lionised for her relatively clean-cut image, but why make a
rude finger gesture at the people who run the industry which has made
her, at 23, internationally famous and worth 10 million

And
did she think of the effect her crude display would have on the
millions of teenage girls who buy her records, pay to see her concerts
and see her as a role model

The only reason can be pure bad manners: someone is getting rather too big for her sparkly Louboutins.

An
even sorrier sight, surely, were the One Direction boys. The five
members of the boyband, aged between 18 and 20, became merrier and
merrier as the night went on, egged on by Corden. Their table groaned
with bottles of champagne.

Living it up: Surrounded by empty bottles of champagne, the boys of One Direction are egged on by Brits host James Corden, third from right

Living it up: Surrounded by empty bottles of champagne, the boys of One Direction are egged on by Brits host James Corden, third from right

Sorrier sight: The One Direction boys made an embarrassing PR slip up when the time came to take to the stage to receive the award for Best British Single

Sorrier sight: The One Direction boys made an embarrassing PR slip up when the time came to take to the stage to receive the award for Best British Single

Long night: Harry Styles, 18, ended up in the embrace of ageing rock chick Jo Wood, 56, the former wife of Rolling Stone Ronnie, in a dingy corner of the Arts Club at the Sony after-party.

Long night: Harry Styles, 18, ended up in the embrace of ageing rock chick Jo Wood, 56, the former wife of Rolling Stone Ronnie, in a dingy corner of the Arts Club at the Sony after-party

When the time came to take to the stage to receive the award for Best British Single — voted for by commercial radio Capital FM listeners — they loudly thanked all the good folk at rival Radio 1 instead for casting their votes.

It was an embarrassing slip-up. The boy band’s PR felt compelled to issue an apology yesterday, and a planned appearance by One Direction on Capital FM was dropped.

The joyous innocence which made The X Factor stars so popular when they formed just over a year ago already seems to be gone. They were pale and sweaty by the time the awards were over.

Harry Styles, 18, who was as giggly as a girl, ended up in the embrace of ageing rock chick Jo Wood, 56, the former wife of Rolling Stone Ronnie, in a dingy corner of the Arts Club at the Sony after-party. And George Michael sparked fresh concerns for his health as he stumbled through his speech when presenting Adele’s award.

More unedifying still, surely, were the grovelling apologies offered to Adele yesterday. The Brits organisers said: ‘We send our deepest apologies. We don’t want this to undermine her incredible achievement.’

ITV added: ‘Unfortunately, the programme was over-running and we had to move on. We would like to apologise to Adele for the interruption.’

In fact, despite her rather immature gesture, no one in the 02 Arena in South-East London, where the awards were held, had the guts to strike back at their stroppy superstar. At the Sony party, executives in expensive suits tutted over how unprofessional ITV was for annoying her.

Chris Martin, of Coldplay, lounging alone in a corner in paint-spattered jeans, remarked mildly: ‘It was a shame for Adele. And after all the highs, it ended the evening on a kind of weird note.’

The awards moved to the 02 Arena last
year in a bid to make them more like the U.S. Grammys — a slick TV show
rather than a chaotic rock event.

So
we were presented once again with pop star Rihanna’s pert posterior in a
performance of her single We Found Love — not exactly an epoch-making
moment. Was she trying to shock, or is it just too much of a habit for
her to break Whatever the answer, her gyrations managed to be
simultaneously crass and bland.

Not hitting the spot: Pop star Rihanna's gyrations managed to be simultaneously crass and bland

Not hitting the spot: Pop star Rihanna’s gyrations managed to be simultaneously crass and bland

Trying to shock: The We Found Love performance was nothing new

Trying to shock: The We Found Love performance was nothing new

The performance by Blur, recipients of the Outstanding Contribution award, was marred by Damon Albarn’s vocals. They did, though, almost erase the memories of former X  Factor contestant Olly Murs’s earlier pitchy rendition of Heart Skips A Beat.

DJ Danny Baker, who attended the awards, said afterwards: ‘God love it but what a shrill, vacuous, corporate, artistically bankrupt cattle trough it is.’

ITV was delighted with its peak audience of 7.4 million, and relieved that there wasn’t any repeat of past outrages, such as the occasion in 1998 when pop group Chumbawamba poured a bucket of iced water over the then deputy prime minister John Prescott.

Really, though, when the most exciting moment in a televised awards ceremony is someone not finishing a speech, then it must be pretty dull event all round.

A spokesman for the regulators Ofcom said that not a single viewer had complained to them about Adele’s rude gesture — in fact, they have received 200 complaints that she was cut off.

But was this event, with its crass swagger, really a fair reflection of the best of the British music industry

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