Bryan Adams on "Exposed," "Summer of '69" and turning down "The Voice"

Bryan Adams doesn't appear to have a lot of down time. In between tour dates and writing new music, the Canadian rocker is busy getting commissioned to shoot photography. And for the first time, a lot of his best work can be found in one place.

He just published "Exposed," his first retrospective book of photographs featuring the likes of Mick Jagger, Queen Elizabeth II, Amy Winehouse and Michael Jackson, just to name a few.

Bryan Adams, "Exposed" book cover, 2012.
Steidl

"It was suggested sort of a few times but it wasn't really until a couple of years ago that I felt as though the work that I had done would stand up for itself as one continuous body and would be interesting enough to actually make a book," said Adams, who has been getting behind the camera since the '90s. "I didn't want to be presumptuous that just because I've done some pictures that that would be enough...I think a couple of years ago, I felt confident that there was enough there."

His portraits have been making the rounds at museums and galleries around the world. "Exposed" has been on exhibition at the Multimedia Art Museum in Moscow and will be on display at Dallas' Goss-Michael Foundation Gallery in December. Next year, the exhibition moves to London; Doha, Qatar; and Dusseldorf, Germany.

And now Adams is working on a second book.

"I have started a book on soldiers that have come back from Afghanistan and Iraq that were wounded. So that book will be put together next year," Adams said during a recent visit to CBSNews.com. "I'm going to preface the book by exhibiting some of the photographs in Dusseldorf. It's going to have its own room. It's taken two years to shoot this. I haven't got a title for the book just yet, but it's under way."

Adams will be on the road for the rest of 2012 and into early 2013. When asked if he ever gets tired of playing "Summer of '69," Adams said no -- he still loves it. And these days, Adams often performs an acoustic version of the track in concert. "That song goes down, no matter what. That song goes down in karaoke at bar. I've seen people do it."

Adams, 53, also revealed that he was asked to be a judge on NBC's "The Voice," but he turned down the offer because it didn't feel like the right fit.

"I didn't want to do that...First of all, I already had a lot of tour dates books and second of all, I didn't really know the show that well. I don't like to make music a competition," he said. "It doesn't feel right to me. I like the idea of everyone's entitled to make music and to make it their own way...I almost think it's really unfair to some people. They really give it all they have and they lose. You feel so sorry for them. I would hate to be the critic. I would never want to be judgmental on someone's art. Forget it."

So, instead Adams has some words of advice for aspiring singer-songwriters.

"The one thing that I always say to young songwriters when they ask me for advice is just concentrate on your music and make the best music you can," he said. "Make some great recordings and then worry about the rest afterwards and stay true to your art. Don't sell out...don't feel like you have to do something in particular that doesn't really feel right. Everyone is trying to claw in there and get noticed. You just got to stay true to yourself."

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