As Queen begins its arduous preparations for a long-awaited U.S. tour (more on that in a moment) with Adam Lambert, guitarist Brian May has become introspective on things. Is this, in fact, the last such major undertaking for Queen?
“I’m kind of feeling that it is,” May tells Damien St. John. “It’s the last big shot. We won’t be able to do it forever. Our bodies are not what they were when we 35. Nevertheless, I’m thrilled to have the opportunity. It’s amazing that we have the chance. It’s incredible that the tour sold out, almost, instantly. These are big places, too. This is a tour precisely on the same level as we did in 1986 with [late original frontman] Freddie [Mercury]. So, it’s a big deal and you have to really take it seriously.”
And that means getting everything ready, both with the show and with themselves. Queen is co-led by founding drummer Roger Taylor. Both men are in the 60s. “We’ve been talking production and design for a few months now,” May says. “All that remains is to get our bodies fit [laughs], and our minds fit.”
Lambert, of course, burst onto the music scene as a finalist on the American Idol television singing program. He first appeared with Queen, in fact, on a 2009 episode of the show. Since, he’s taken a series of guest turns with May and Taylor, finally reaching American shores last year at the iHeart Radio music event in September. That sparked this U.S. jaunt.
“I know Freddie for a fact would gasp at the stuff that Adam is able to do,” May says. “You know, Freddie was one of the greatest singers of all time. There’s question on that. But he would have looked at Adam and thought: ‘Oh, my God. That boy’s got something.'”