Brian May on Reviving Freddie Mercury: “I Don’t Want to be Touring with a Hologram”
Legendary Queen guitarist Brian May is a busy man these days. His hugely successful Queen musical We Will Rock You comes to Boston in November, celebrating its 11th year in production with over 15 million people having seen the show. May joined Chuck Nowlin live on the air to discuss the play and other future plans regarding Queen.
The musical, built of course around the music and “spirit” of Queen, tells a satirical tale on music and the influence of new digital technology on rock and roll as it takes place in a dystopian future where everything is programmed and nothing sounds human anymore.
Even though it’s purely fictional, the satirical approach of the show, which comes to the Boston Opera House on Nov.5, paints a picture of what many cynics might see as the path rock music is taking.
“It’s a fantasy, but it’s based on the history of rock and roll where you are, and the future of rock and roll,” he said.
May also spoke at length about the idea of another Queen tour featuring a hologram of Freddie Mercury, who would “perform” right along with the band. May doesn’t like the idea, mainly because it would make him, Roger Taylor and the others feel more like an exhibit at the Museum of Science than a rock concert.
“I don’t want to be touring with a hologram,” he said. “It makes you feel like museum pieces, and we’re not fossils, we’re alive.”
May added that it “just wouldn’t feel right” and that he finds it more interesting to tour with a similar-sounding live singer like Adam Lambert anyway.
Speaking of Freddie Mercury, some unreleased recordings of him have reportedly surfaced and could be part of a future album or compilation from Queen. May confirmed to Chuck that the recordings do exist and indeed have never been released, but will be in the near future.
Another important piece of Queen news surrounds the long-in-production Freddie Mercury biopic, which has cast an unknown actor to replace Sacha Baron Cohen, who everyone working on the film agreed wouldn’t work in the main role. They have yet to figure out whether the new star will sing his own parts or lip-sync over Freddie Mercury’s vocals.
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