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The new album features covers and originals.
Queen guitarist Brian May and Broadway legend Kerry Ellis are finally re-teaming for their second album release 'Golden Days', six years on from their first full-length output. It's a compilation of original and re-arranged tracks, including a tribute to a cause close to their hearts.
Brian May re-teams with Kerry Ellis
The album features five original songs - two of which were written by Brian and three which were a collaborative effort between Brian and Kerry - as well as new arrangements of classic tunes like 'Amazing Grace', The Wailin' Jennys' 'Once Voice' and the Academy Award winning 'Born Free' from the film of the same name as an ode to their Wildlife Conservation work.
Continue reading: Brian May And Kerry Ellis Join Forces Once Again For 'Golden Days'
May had been due to play a string of dates with Kerry Ellis.
Brian May has cancelled his Christmas Candlelight Tour dates with West End star Kerry Ellis.
The Queen guitarist was scheduled to perform 11 dates across the UK, but has been forced to pull out due to a ‘persistent illness’, which he says is ‘destroying my energy and my will’.
Brian May has cancelled his Christmas Candlelight Tour
Continue reading: Brian May Cancels December Concerts Due To 'Persistent Illness'
The Queen singer gets an asteroid for his 70th birthday.
Freddie Mercury would have been 70-years-old today, and to mark his birthday, the International Astronomical Union has decided to name an asteroid after him. His Queen co-member Brian May was on hand to celebrate the new proposal as part of the Freddie For A Day party in Montreux, Switzerland; the same town where his statue stands overlooking Lake Geneva.
Freddie Mercury gets an asteroid named after him
Brian May announced the exciting news in a video message released at the Freddie For A Day 70th birthday party at Montreux Casino, which benefits the AIDS charity Mercury Phoenix Trust. He briefly outlined everything that is known about this particular celestial body and read out the citation from the certificate issued by the IAU. Plus, there's a short video of the asteroid in action at the end.
'The International Astronomical Union's Minor Planet Centre, which operates out of the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, has deemed it their duty and their pleasure to name an asteroid after Freddie', said Brian May. 'It's out in the main asteroid belt beyond the orbit of Mars and inside the orbit of Jupiter. It's about 3.5km across, it has an albedo of about point 3 which means it only reflects about one third of the light which falls upon it.'
Asteroid 17473 Freddiemercury was coincidentally first discovered in 1991, the year of his death. According to May, it can be seen from Earth, but only with an especially powerful telescope. 'From the Earth it shines at the fourteenth magnitude which means you have to have a pretty decent telescope to see it', he adds. 'It's just a dot of light but it's a very special dot of light.'
May also read out the commemorative certificate's citation for Freddie. 'Freddie Mercury (Farrokh Bulsara 1946-1991) was a distinguished British songwriter and the lead singer for the legendary rock group Queen', it read. 'His incredible vocal range and distinctive sound and performance style made him one of the most well-known icons of rock music and he is regarded as one of the greatest rock singers of all time.'
Incidentally, Brian May himself is an astrophysicist having finally obtained his PhD at the Imperial College London in 2007. He'd initially abandoned his PhD in the 70s as Queen became huge. He actually also had an asteroid named after him, Asteroid 52665 Brianmay, in 2008 (as suggested by Sir Patrick Moore because of the initials in the provisional 1998 BM30 designation) and went on to co-founder Asteroid Day which takes place on June 30th.
More: Freddie Mercury's childhood home honoured by English Heritage
'Freddie Mercury sang, 'I'm a shooting star leaping through the sky' - and now that is even more true than ever before', said Joel Parker of the Southwest Research Institute. 'When an asteroid is initially discovered it is given a 'provisional designation' until enough measurements have been made that its orbit is accurately determined. At that point, it is given a number and is eligible to get a name as well. In this case, the asteroid in question was discovered in 1991 and was given the provisional designation '1991 FM3'. It has been observed and its position and orbit measured over 1,100 times, and it was given the number 17473.'
Like May's asteroid, the proposal to name the rock after Freddie was partly due to the 'FM' in the initial designation. It's been quite the commemorative month for Freddie though; only last week did English Heritage unveil a blue plaque on his modest semi-detached childhood home in the London suburb of Feltham.
Queen and Adam Lambert rocked the United Center with a tour kick-off to remember.
Queen and Adam Lambert have managed to ace the nerve-wracking first night of their tour in North America, rocking Chicago's United Center to its foundations with a bombastic rock show to surpass all others. Combining theatrical flair with jaw-dropping vocal abilities, Queen's adopted singer, Adam Lambert proved his worth as the successor to Freddie Mercury once more.
A Stormingly Successful Opening Night Left Queen & Adam Lambert Fans Hungry For More.
"We've played to some of your mothers and fathers," guitarist Brian May remarked to the full-house crowd during last night's show. "And some of your grandchildren, I'm sure." Noughties Queen singer Paul Rodgers may have had the ability to pull of the power rock group's more challenging numbers, but it is Idol alum Lambert who truly embodies the spirit of the late flamboyant frontman.
Continue reading: Queen, Adam Lambert Blast Off With Bombastic Tour Opener
'Sunshine on Leith' director Dexter Fletcher has left the Freddie Mercury movie.
Director Dexter Fletcher has walked out on Sony's Freddy Mercury movie, meaning it's back to the drawing board for a project that has already suffered numerous setbacks. Fletcher, who landed the gig after his work on Sunshine on Leith, did not see eye-to-eye with GK Films' Graham King on the direction of the movie, according to Deadline.
Dexter Fletcher Has Left The Freddie Mercury Biopic
Skyfall actor Ben Whishaw is set to play Mercury, but the delay in finding Fletcher's replacement could have wider implications for the production schedule with Whishaw preparing to begin work on the new Bond movie with Sam Mendes.
Continue reading: Freddie Mercury BioPic Parts Ways With Dexter Fletcher
The Everly Brothers singer died aged 74 earlier this week
Phil Everly sadly passed away on Friday, 3 January, leaving the entertainment world in shock at the sudden and unexpected passing of one half of the music world's most celebrated and influential musical duos. Phil died at Providence St. Joseph Medical Centre in Burbank, California, earlier this week, with his death being confirmed via a hospital spokesperson.
Phil Everly: 1939 - 2014
The reason behind his death was initially witheld from the press, however his wife, Patti, told the Los Angeles Times that he died from complications owing to lung disease, blaming a lifetime of cigarette smoking on his death.
Continue reading: Phil Everly Remembered By Sir Tim Rice, Nancy Sinatra, Eric Idle And More Following Passing
The bassist has refused to cash in on the death of Freddie Mercury since his passing and continues to do so, according to Brian May
Former Queen bassist John Deacon is apparently having nothing to do with the upcoming biopic of the group's late singer Freddie Mercury as he continues to maintain his exile from the surviving group member's work under the Queen name. According to the group's guitarist Brian May, Deacon has given the script for the film his approval, but wants nothing more to do with the upcoming movie project, or the potential new Queen album rumoured to be in the works.
Mercury will be remembered in the upcoming biopic
"We kinda mourn for John as well as Freddie in a sense," May recently told Rolling Stone. "I do know John's read the script and he's in approval...[But] he just doesn't want to be walking those roads ... He's in his own space and we respect that. It's a shame, because we would love to have him around but he doesn't want to be in that arena anymore."
Continue reading: John Deacon Rules Out Any Involvement In Freddie Mercury Biopic
The guitarist claims that the band have unearthed more unheard clips featuring Freddie Mercury than they had anticipated
Its been more than two decades since the passing of Freddie Mercury, but before his tragic passing, the powerful Queen vocalist may have spent more time in the recording booth than was initially anticipated. In addition to the recently unearthed duets with Michael Jackson, it turns out that Mercury also spent a good amount of solo time in the studio, as the treasure trove of recently unearthed demos suggests.
Mercury was prolific in the recording booth
Speaking with Mojo (via The Guardian) for their December/January issue, guitarist Brian May revealed that he and the rest of the band have been scanning their archives for any unused material featuring the late Mercury, telling the magazine that they might have hit the jackpot. Comparing the project to Queen's fifteenth and final studio album, Made In Heaven, which was released nearly four years after Mercury's death in November 1995, May stated that the newly found tracks are being polished off and prepared for release. He went on to say that the hunt proved more fruitful than was initially planned and that there may be enough material for a full-length release.
Continue reading: Brian May Teases Possible 'New' Queen Album After New Demos Are Found
The Queen guitarist continues to wage war on the UK badger cull with performance of 'Nothing Really Has Changed.'
In his latest move to protect Britain's badgers in the face of a potentially devastating cull, Queen guitarist Brian May has teamed up with singer and friend Kerry Ellis to raise funds to pay for tuberculosis vaccinations. May has been a long-time opponent of the badger cull, which was initiated to prevent the spread of bovine TB in farms.
Ellis & May Performed An Expressive Cover Of McKenna's Song To Raise Awareness Of The Plight Of The Badgers.
'Nothing Really Has Changed' is a version of Virginia McKenna's original and was performed by Ellis and May at the recent Montreux Jazz Festival as part of their 'Acoustic By Candlelight' tour. Brian introduced the new song with a message from his heart: "I'm going to show you a little video with this song just to remind you that we too have wild animals all around us perhaps need a little respect."
Continue reading: Brian May Invokes Power Of The Badger In Tear-Jerking Ballad [Listen]
Queen guitarist Brian May and West End star Kerry Ellis collaborate once again on a cover of wildlife activist Virginia McKenna's song 'Nothing Really Has Changed'. They performed the track during their 'Acoustic By Candlelight' tour.
The video features the duo on a candle-lit stage with Brian on guitar and Kerry on vocals at the Montreux Jazz Festival. Brian opens the track by explaining that he wants to remind people that 'we too have wild animals all around us which, perhaps, need a little respect' before presenting a video of badgers and foxes playing which is projected onto a screen behind them. The track is a mournful, minor-infused tune which Kerry portrays with intense emotion behind her resonant voice.
The song has been unveiled as part of their campaign against the proposed badger culling which the government have put in place to reduce the spread of bovine tuberculosis in cattle, as many badgers carry the deadly disease. However, this controlled killing of the creatures naturally means that thousands of uninfected badgers are also being slaughtered which is something that animal rights activists are in uproar about. Brian May is part of a campaign that insists that vaccinations should be given to prevent the spread of TB instead. 'The cull is a disaster as was predicted; it was never on the cards that culling could eradicate bTB - only vaccination can do that', he has stated.
Continue: Brian May - Nothing Really Has Changed
Brian May has opened up about Sacha Baron Cohen's departure from the planned Freddie Mercury biopic, which it seems is almost certainly going to be a sugar-coated love letter to the late Queen singer.
Cohen walked away from the project in July after spending months honing his vocals for the role, however, reports suggested he fell out with may and Roger Taylor of his planned portrayal of Mercury.
Now, speaking with UltimateClassicRock.com, Brian May explained, "In the end, we felt that his [Cohen's] presence in the movie would be very distracting.
Continue reading: Brian May: Sacha Baron Cohen "Distracting" In Freddie Mercury Biopic
The Queen guitarist said that Cohen's exit wasn't prompted by a script dispute, but by the comic actor's larger-than-life persona
The planned biopic of Queen frontman Freddie Mercury's life has been in discussion for three years now, with comic actor Sacha Baron Cohen in line to star as the late singer since the very beginning of the project. The biopic was thrown into disarray in the summer however, when it was reported that Cohen had been booted from the project, with little explanation for his exit. This week, Queen guitarist Brian May looked to shed some light on what happened.
Freddie Mercury is revered as one of the finest rock frontmen of all time
"It's quite difficult to talk about because we owe Sacha a lot," May told Classic Rock in it's latest issue. He went on to say, "He had so much enthusiasm for the project and it really helped us kick it into the start position. But in the end we felt that his presence in the movie would be very distracting."
Continue reading: Brian May Explains Why Sasha Baron Cohen Was Wrong For Freddie Mercury Biopic
Everybody knows, Badgers love "Mash por-tatooooe!!" (Not being culled).
If you were a British child growing up in the nineties, you'll realise how exciting the news of the return of Bodger and Badger is.
The ventriloquist actor and his "talking" furry, potato-loving badger companion entertained scores of youngsters through nine series and 10 years from 1989 to 1999 with seemingly endless mashed potato jokes. But the duo's return is underpinned by a more serious note: the two B's have made their comeback in a one-off episode about the planned culling of badgers in Somerset and Gloucestershire - measures that are planned to supposedly rid the country's farms of bovine tuberculosis.
Brian May: Part Of "Team Badger."
Continue reading: Bodger & Badger Speak Out Against Badger Cull With New Clip [Video]
Michael Jackson and Freddie Mercury collaboration tracks from 1983 will be released in just a couple of months time.
Queen guitarist Brian May has revealed that he's working on and plans to release previously unheard material from Queen lead singer Freddie Mercury and pop star Michael Jackson. The surfacing of the dead icons' collaboration will mark 30 years since they were originally recorded in 1983, but May and pop producer supremo William Orbit have worked together to tweak and remaster the songs - one would assume - for digital age optimisation.
We Will Hear New Jackson Material In A Freddie Mercury Collaboration.
The tracks in question were reportedly recorded three decades ago at Jackson's home studio in Encino, California, before the pair fell out after Jackson decided to bring a llama into the studio. Yup, the duet tracks could well be llama-inspired, after Freddie's manager Jim "Miami" Beach reportedly got a call from the British star, having said; "Mercury rang me and said: 'Miami, dear, can you get over here? You've got to get me out of here; I'm recording with a llama.'"
Continue reading: Unheard Michael Jackson & Freddie Mercury Duets Set For Release 30 Years Later
Sacha Baron Cohen wanted to make a gritty film about Freddie Mercury's life with Oscar winning director Tom Hooper. Brian May did not.
Sacha Baron Cohen has left the movie biopic of iconic Queen frontman Freddie Mercury after a disagreement over the direction of the project. Cohen - who bears a dramatic resemblance to the singer - had wanted to make a gritty R-rated drama about the star's life, enlisting David Fincher and Tom Hooper to develop the project.
However - as is always the case with approval of Queen projects - the remaining members of the band were concerned about the movie's potential effect on Mercury's legacy and seemingly wanted to make a sugar-coated PG movie.
According to Deadline.com, the living members of Queen, including Brian May, rejected British writer Peter Morgan (The Queen, Frost/Nixon) as the writer, as well as both Fincher (The Social Network) and Hooper (The King's Speech) as directors.
Continue reading: Sacha Baron Cohen Leaves Freddie Mercury Movie As Attention Turns To Depp
During an interview on the 'Today' programme, Mick Jagger revealed he thought about becoming a teacher, a journalist and a politician before 'The Rolling Stones' were formed.
Mick Jagger considered being a teacher, a politician and a journalist. 'Start Me Up' singer revealed his early career plans during a televised interview. Speaking on the Today programme, The Rolling Stones singer said a career as "a schoolteacher would have been very gratifying". Had the singer gone on to be a teacher he would have kept his families' tradition as both his father and grandfather were teachers.
Mick Jagger in New York, 2011
Teaching is surprisingly more rock and roll than you'd expect. Sting was a teacher before he became a hit in the 80's, as was Sheryl Crow, Gene Simmons, Brian May, Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel.
Continue reading: Schoolboy Blues: Mick Jagger Wanted To Be A Teacher!
'Gangnam Style' K-Pop superstar, Psy, has said he'd be up for a musical collaboration with Queen's guitarist Brian May.
Speaking in an interview with Radio 1's Scott Mills, Psy revealed he'd set up a brunch-date with the fuzzy haired guitarist, who played alongside Freddie Mercury in the 70s/80s rock band, Queen.
Describing himself as a "really huge fan" of Queen, Psy revealed he was going to have brunch with May yesterday (11th June).
When asked if the pair were meeting with a view to working together, Psy - real name Park Jae-sang - said "Seems like it. I don't know, I'm just going to eat tomorrow, but I'm super excited. The band was an inspiration to me since I was 14 or 15 until now."
Continue reading: Radio Ga-Gangnam: Psy And Queen's Brian May To Collaborate?
Brian May - The Olivier Awards held at the Royal Opera House - Pressroom - London, United Kingdom - Sunday 28th April 2013
Brian May - The Olivier Awards held at the Royal Opera House - Arrivals - London, United Kingdom - Sunday 28th April 2013
The Freddy Mercury documentary promised to be "the closest we’ll get to the real Freddie Mercury", well at least host Alan Yentob promised that. But did we get our close up? According to Gigwise, we did not.
The Arts Desk said, "[Freddie's] shyness and the protective persona, coupled with vigorous policing by the Queen organisation, meant that film-maker Rhys Thomas couldn't add a great deal to what's already known about Mercury." And The Independent were equally down on the doc, saying it was "rather more like a trip down rock memory lane than an hour of revelation or revisionism". The show wasn’t completely devoid of interesting information about the band, for instance: we found out that Mercury fought "like a kid" with Brian May, and that Queen were stuck in a lift when they found out that 'Bohemian Rhapsody' had reached number one, but beyond that, there was no real depth. Or not the depth we were craving, anyway, unless you count the fact that Mercury was supposed to record a collaboration with Michael Jackson but it fell apart because Jackson kept bringing his pet llama into the recording studio as interesting.
Essentially, the documentary is a pleasant watch for a casual fan, looking to gain an extra insight into Freddy, but for you Queen fanatics out there, it’ll probably be a regurgitation of stuff you already spent hours on the internet reading about.
Shot in 1986 and only just now remastered for release in the West, this documentary captures Queen in all their glory both on stage and behind the scenes. The film is divided into two parts, opening with a 27-minute exploration of the band in the "magic year" after its triumphant Live Aid performance, during which they recorded an album, scored the adventure movie The Highlander and planned a massive European tour.
Then we cut to their concert in Budapest, their first performance in Hungary, which drew 80,000 fans from throughout the Eastern Bloc. When Freddie Mercury takes the stage, the crowd goes wild, and he holds them in rapturous attention all the way through. He even performs some Hungarian folk music along the way, but they're far more interested in the band's big hits like Radio Gaga and Bohemian Rhapsody, which they sing along with loudly.
Queen rarely gave interviews, so the backstage material in this film is a fascinating glimpse into these musicians, who are all self-effacing and rather cheeky. Mercury even starts flirting with the interviewer, noting that he's not worried about struggling to connect with the foreign crowd. "I always win an audience," he says with a mischievous grin. And during the concert section of the film, we also get to see them getting out and about in Budapest, seeing the sites, meeting locals and generally clowning around.
Continue reading: Hungarian Rhapsody: Queen - Live In Budapest Review
Brian May Saturday 8th September 2012 Celebrities attend the Pup Aid 2012 held on Primrose Hill
Brian May, Ben Elton and Roger Taylor - Brian May, Ben Elton and Roger Taylor Monday 14th May 2012 'We Will Rock You' 10th year anniversary performance - arrivals
Brian May and Anita Dobson - Brian May and Anita Dobson Sunday 15th April 2012 The Olivier Awards 2012 held at the Royal Opera House- Arrivals
Brian May Monday 5th September 2011 Freddie For A Day held at The Savoy - Arrivals. London, England
Brian May Friday 4th March 2011 The Wetnose Rescue Awards at the Church House Conference Centre London, England
In an episode of American Idol, contestant Ace Young performed 'We Will Rock You' with Queen. But an interview with guitarist Brian May might have been edited to undermine his performance.
Brain May, the legendary guitarist from the equally legendary rock band Queen, has revealed that he may have been used by producers of 'American Idol' in order to undermine the potential of one of the contestants. In an entry on his personal blog on Thursday, May explained how on Tuesday night's show, his encounter with the contestant Ace Young was entirely misrepresented.
Brian May maintains that his conversation was edited to sound more negative.
As part of the show, a conversation between May and Young was recorded, but according to May, "it was edited in such a way that it looked as if I was purely negative." Furthermore, May suggests that his thoughts and comments were made at a completely different time. As part of the editing process, the section appeared to show the two discussing the new composition of 'We Will Rock You', "after we had played together, which was not the way it happened, making me look like I was against the whole thing."
Continue reading: American Idol Edit Brian May To Undermine Contestant
Date of birth
19th July, 1947
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Shot in 1986 and only just now remastered for release in the West, this documentary...