Someone cue up Green Day’s “Wake Me Up When September Ends,” because there is a chance that fans aren’t getting Adele’s new album until after that month. After Adele, 31, confirmed that her next album was on its way, she said something during the Apr. 18 Instagram Live battle between Teddy Riley and Kenny “Babyface” Edmonds. Before audio issues ended the battle before it started, Adele showed up in the comments. “Come on it’s 2020 we ain’t meant to get what we want,” she wrote, adding a series of “laughing so hard I cry” emojis that also mean she was “laughing through her tears.” However, her fans were not laughing at the implication that her album may have been pushed back a year.
Adele confirmed the news of her next album at a wedding party in February. The singer, who was both a performer and an officiant for one of her friends, according to NME, got on stage to deliver the news. She said that everyone can “expect my album in September.” The announcement came one month after her manager said that Adele was going to release new music in 2020, but that was before the COVID-19 pandemic came through to wreck the music industry.
It’s a dark time for the music biz. With concert venues shut down due to social-distancing orders, many stars – from Taylor Swift to BTS to Justin Bieber – have been forced to postpone their tour dates. Festivals have been delayed to later in the year (Coachella) or until 2021 (practically every other event besides Coachella.) Even record releases have been pushed back. Lady Gaga’s new album Chromatica was initially supposed to come out on Apr. 10, but she wrote that “it just doesn’t feel right for me to release this album with all that is going on with this global pandemic.” Alanis Morissette, Luke Bryan, The 1975, HAIM, Alicia Keys, Coriky, and Kehlani are also among the artists that have delayed releasing new music. If Adele becomes the next one, at least she’ll be in good company.
Adele first hinted that she was going to release new music when she turned 31 on May 5, 2019. “30 tried me so hard, but I’m owning it and trying my hardest to lean into it all,” she said. “31 is going to be a big ol’ year, and I’m going to spend it all on myself. For the first time in a decade, I’m ready to feel the world around me and look up for once. Be kind to yourself, people, we’re only human, go slow, put your phone down and laugh out loud at every opportunity.” She then joked that her album 30 (since she names all her albums after the age she is when she records/releases them) would “a drum n bass record to spite you.”
However, 2020 won’t be a year without music. Many underground and independent artists have gone ahead with their release schedule. Thundercat, Fiona Apple, and DaBaby have put out albums, just to name a few.