Adele was featured on the show in 2011.
Background[edit | edit source]
Adele’s Unplugged special premiered online on March 3, 2011, and on television on March 4, 2011, although Adele’s performance of “(You Make Me Feel) Like a Natural Woman” was previewed by VH1 via Twitter a few weeks before.
Adele later spoke of the performance:
|“||My favorite one is the Lauryn Hill one. I’ve got that one on CD as well. I’ve never been so choked up by something, and it was so refreshing—I mean, I was still very young when she did her ‘Unplugged,’ and when ‘Miseducation’ came out, I was really young, but that is the most influential record of my life. It’s my favorite record of all time. But I never knew anything about her, she was so elusive… But just to see her [on ‘Unplugged’], and that broken look, just her and a guitar, her banter between the songs—I felt like how I feel when I hear Etta James. I was just like, ‘I totally get it. She’s in my head, she’s in my heart, she knows me.’
It’s quite a special moment when you suddenly have that link and bond with an artist, and I finally got that with her, when I heard that. So, yeah, it was a complete joy [to do my own episode].
Setlist[edit | edit source]
- “Someone Like You”
- “Don't You Remember”
- “Rolling in the Deep”
- “(You Make Me Feel) Like a Natural Woman” (Aretha Franklin cover)
- “Turning Tables” (online exclusive)
- “Chasing Pavements”
Critical reception[edit | edit source]
Matt Muro wrote on the VH1 blog that any singer's move to cover Aretha Franklin was “dangerous,” but added that Adele “smartly introduced the song by saying she wouldn’t attempt to reinterpret it. While we agree with her sentiment (and respect for Aretha), turns out no disclaimer was needed. Listening up-close to Adele’s mellow but true rendition, which required only minimal guitar and keys, it seemed to us there is no one Adele can’t cover with her powerful, nuanced singing.” He further added that her performance of “Someone Like You” was “arguably the most beautiful (and ‘somber,’ as she puts it),” while “Rolling in the Deep” was “thrilling live.”