Brian May and Roger Taylor on the real reason Queen left support acts

On this week’s episode of Queen The Greatest Live, Brian May and Roger Taylor appear in new interviews filmed below, looking back on the band’s epic opening numbers. In the early days with Freddie Mercury and John Deacon, this could even be We Will Rock You, now saved for the end of Queen and Adam Lambert concerts alongside We Are The Champions. The band’s drummer shared, “As with most shows, I’m not talking about skits or anything, I think for the audience, they want to gawk at first. So if you can get them flying a bit at first, we used to say blind them, deafen them, then calm them down a bit after 20 minutes. But you really try to make a visual impact with the first song and obviously kind of an aural attack. And then you try to space the songs smartly, but you really want to go bang, bang, bang, bang at the beginning of a show.”

Brian May said: “Yes, show openings and closings are incredibly important. What is in between is also important. But you know, the way you enter and the way you leave are the most memorable moments. So I think about opening a lot, and it’s been a specialty of mine for a long time. In fact, sometimes when writing a song, you already know that it would make a good opening. You see it in that light.

“Production starts to take place in your head. We’ve had some really good opening acts and I think in general they’ve come out of music. You see, I think our show is also different from a lot of shows in that everything comes from the music. It’s not like we’re just going to put on a nice light show and play some music. Everything comes from the music, everything makes the music more expressive, it connects better”.

Brian continued, “So knowing that process and that kind of solid seat, it’s actually quite easy to model those moments. And it’s fun. It’s a lot of fun to plan it, plan the sound, plan where we’re going to be, plan the lights and everything and then see the effect on the audience and go, ‘Yeah, that works.'”

Roger added: “We’ve had some good starts. I liked kabuki. The big curtain just disappears in front of your eyes and suddenly reveals everything. That was always a good, good joke.”

The guitarist then shared how The Who and Led Zeppelin inspired Queen’s live openings headlined by Freddie.

READ MORE: Brian May told Freddie Mercury to ‘stop fighting angry Queen fans’

Brian May shared: “I remember going to see a Who or Zeppelin show and you were sitting in the audience and they were running late and it was all hot and humid and sweaty and you were like, ‘What are you doing? They’re going to do when arrive?’ and it’s that incredible moment when they go onstage for the first time. So we’re very aware of that and we try to give…we’re never late. But we try to give them that feeling, justify that feeling of anticipation, give them something they’ve never seen before.” .

Queen used to have support acts like Thin Lizzy, but I don’t think they need them anymore. Roger explained: “It’s good to create a kind of atmosphere, I think, and we used things very much like setting. Ring for that through the PA, not loud, just to get a nice buzz, hopefully, and an expectant buzz. I think a lot of acts do that. Act of support? Yes. We have had them in the past. Lots of it and it’s always been good. But I think the show these days is big. It’s a mass production and really, and it’s long, and I think it’s actually a bit superfluous. We don’t feel like we need a supporting act, so we don’t have one.”

Brian May presents a classic Queen song directly inspired by Led Zeppelin [LED ZEPPELIN]

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Added Brian: “Basically, we have a lot to offer on any given night and we like to use the whole night. So we like to do the whole show ourselves. It’s like we did the warm-up ourselves. In a way, it’s a shame because it’s nice to have a support group because it gives them an edge and gives them a good chance to be seen.

“But at the same time, we’ve talked to our audience most of the time, and I think most of them prefer what we do. They like to have the whole night, just us, who have made the effort to put together our show, which lasts two and a half hours or more, covering everything they’d like to see us do. And you can’t do that in less time than that, really.”

Next week’s episode of Queen The Greatest Live is titled Now I’m Here.

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