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9 October 2023, 14:55
The Canadian singer has spoken about the extraordinary moment he photographed the Queen at Buckingham Palace.
The 'Summer of '69' singer is famous not only for his stage exploits, but also his parallel career behind the camera.
But it's the singer's brush with royalty that may be one of his most famous photography assignments to date.
In a candid interview featured in the latest edition of Classic Rock, guest-edited by the Canadian rock star himself, Adams delved into his career as a professional photographer.
During the conversation, he unveiled how this passion has brought him the unique opportunity to collaborate with some of the world's most renowned figures, including the late British monarch.
The surprise assignment came in 2002 as the Queen was about the celebrate her Golden Jubilee, and Adams has revealed he only had a few days notice to prepare for the secretive shoot.
"I was asked to do it by my agent in London, Camera Press," Adams said.
"What it was, everybody in the Commonwealth each had a representative granted a five-minute session with the Queen for the Golden Jubilee. I was Canada’s representative.
"My agent called me and said: ‘Are you busy on Wednesday? We’d like you to shoot the Queen for us and it’ll be at her house."
I even said: "What house is that? (Buckingham Palace)."
Speaking about his encounter with the Queen, Adams said she was chatty and interested in his work.
“I think I got 10 minutes, maybe 15, because she liked to chat," he said.
"I was shooting on 10 x 8, which is a large-format camera.
"When I’d set it up, she came down with the corgis. She said something like: ‘Oh, we haven’t seen one of those for a while.‘ I think she was curious to see how it was going to go."
Speaking to Yahoo in 2022, Adams explained how he went on to capture what is now one of the most iconic pictures of the monarch – a photograph which eventually went on to feature on a Canadian postage stamp.
"That picture you see is actually one of the foyers of the entrance, the foyer to the garden at the back of Buckingham Palace," he explained.
He said: “I asked her to sit there because she was about to leave... and as she was leaving, I said, ‘Ma’am, do you mind just sitting on the chair for a moment?’
"And there’s some Wellington boots in the corner of the picture.
"She looked over at them, and then looked back at me — and then that was the picture."
Speaking at the unveiling of the stamp two years later, Adams said the candid snap gave a "glimpse of the real person".
Asked about why he thought the photo was so popular, Adams replied: “I think in the end, the thing that made this photo win out, was her charming smile.
"It is a one in a million."
"She was very at ease and made me feel comfortable," Adams recalled. "I hope I did the same."
Bryan Adams handles stage invader with style
The following year Adams captured another portrait featuring the monarch alongside her husband, Prince Philip, a photograph which now hangs in the National Portrait Gallery.
The pervading question is, did the Queen know Bryan Adams' music?
"We never really got into it,” he told the New Yorker in 2023. "But I met her a few times after that, and every time I was in the room she would come over and say hello."