26 July, 2017

Queen + Adam Lambert, Boston 2017

There are no words that can convey the joy and thrill of seeing Queen and Adam Lambert AGAIN!

My friend George (hi, George!) was originally planning to come with me, but that couldn't pan out, so my friend Allison and I sat together instead. But George and a few of my other friends were definitely there with me in spirit!

I bought two tickets back in February and was fairly certain that me and George would have been at the very last row of our section (Section B), but fate decided to smile upon me again and... well, this was how close me and Allison were to the end of the catwalk!

I had an amazing time seeing them back in 2014, and I really enjoy the pictures I took, but I felt like I had focused too much on getting pictures and not just enjoying the show. So I vowed to do that this time! I took some shots with my cell phone, and they're blurry, but I like them!

One of my favorite parts of the show was Adam calling out the Bastard Queen Fans who like to be pissy because "Adam's not Freddie Mercury." His eloquent response to that was, "Yeah, no shit!" I personally ran into two of those folks before the show. One of them was behind me and Allison at the concert, and he saw my phone's wallpaper (Wembley Freddie) and said, "That's the real singer! Adam's not the real singer!" At some point Allison and I had to turn to correct him when he told the people he was with(?) that John Deacon had died. I was super worried this guy was going to be a repeat of the fucker from 2014 who kept spouting incorrect trivia and talking through "Love Of My Life".

Thankfully, he was very easy to ignore during the show!

To help myself prepare for maximum fun for the concert, I avoided reading setlists, only stuck to reading review headlines (all of which are overwhelmingly positive), and didn't listen to any Queen for a little over a week. I was torn about whether to listen to Adam's new single, "Two Fux", because I didn't know if I wanted to be able to sing along or not. I chose to not listen beforehand in case I'd fall into a tour news rabbit hole. It's a fun track! Give it a listen if you haven't yet!

When Brian made his way to the end of the catwalk and was handed his acoustic, I was able to move a bit closer. I had been waiting for so long to feel that connection between Brian and fans during "Love Of My Life" AND I FINALLY GOT IT! I was finally right in it! And while he wasn't looking my way, I didn't feel any separation from the experience! In between verses, he noticed some folks had their phone lights on, so jokingly asked, "Did some of you bring your mobiles?" and the next thing I knew, fucking EVERYONE'S phones lit up! It's not the same as using a lighter, but it's a different kind of beautiful.

Brian didn't bring out his selfie stick in 2014, and I had thought that was indication that he wasn't having a good time at that show. But when he addressed us this time he spoke with such warmth and sincerity, that I probably worried for nothing. I can't wait for him to post the picture!

I didn't get a super great look at Roger last time, so I made sure to get plenty of shots this time! It was so great getting to actually see him!

The whole show was amazing! I'm so glad I got to go and share it with people!

17 July, 2017

Concert prep

I'm at the phase where I'm not going to listen to any Queen until the concert on the 25th because I want to ensure maximum excitement the night of (I've also been avoiding reading setlists)!

This is really bad timing because I'm still really enjoying the On Air CD set.

I also have enough space that I could listen to Queen II uninterrupted.

Are the kids still saying "FML"? Because FML!

06 July, 2017

Marc Martel's cover of Don't Stop Me Now

I'm annoyingly picky about Queen covers, so it's always really fun for me when I genuinely enjoy one! And as the screenshot above indicates, I enjoy calling out Bastard Queen Fans as well!

28 June, 2017

Queen On Air

I finally got a copy of the On Air 6-CD set! I'm sure in 2017, people may be puzzled about my still purchasing CDs. Downloading stuff would certainly offer up instant gratification, but I love/hate/love the anticipation of waiting for an order to ship, physically holding my purchase... I prefer my Queen stuff to be tangible :-)

Anyway! I was excited to upload all six discs to my iTunes library (I love this (tedious) process, too!), and I noticed a couple disturbing things. First of all, disc 3 starts with Freddie and Kenny Everett going through A Day At The Races,, but Freddie's name was misspelled! Mistakes happen, but this just seemed like a pretty gross oversight!

Disc 6 yielded no proper track names when I uploaded it. I thought for a minute that I'd gone back in time to the days of burning CDs, and everything was organized by "track 01", "track 02", etc. so I had to go through and label everything manually (Kids, this was prior to the days where a trusty internet connection and music storage worked hand-in-hand. Those were dark times). I have no idea if this was my desktop being weird, or if that's how it looks for everyone...

I'm glad to have this collection, and Queen Productions, Ltd. has phoned it in on cover art plenty, and I grudgingly switched out parentheses and brackets on the rerelease bonus CDs to make everything consistent, but..? Was On Air assigned one track per person to digitize and put together, or something? Would that explain some of the spelling errors and some interview tracks ending in periods? Maybe they need rejuvenated and motivated staff? I don't know... It just seems more careless than usual.

But on with the actual content! There is a LOT of stuff in this set! And none of it is filler! The first 2 discs are recordings from the BBC studio sessions, and it's fun to have the announcers voice at the end name each song because it gives my generation and folks younger than me an idea of what it might've sounded like to hear Queen's early days as if they were current. And it's fun to compare the BBC versions to the proper album versions!

Disc 3, which I admittedly have not actually listened to yet because my attention span doesn't always allow me to give a thing the attention it deserves at first listen. But on there is concert footage that played over BBC Radio, which is fun. It's additionally amusing and amazing to me because there's a few tracks of Queen in Germany in 1986, which is where my friend George saw them!

Discs 5 and 6 are interviews. I've only been able to listen to Freddie on Kenny Everett's show so far (with a ridiculous amount of pausing because, again, attention span), and the sound quality is lacking, unfortunately, but it's clear that QPL really did the best they could with what they had. Their voices are loud enough, but over the years what might have been perfectly clear conversation just now sounds almost mumbly. I would suggest headphones and minimal background noise if you have auditory processing issues like myself.

Still, I think it's worth it to have all 6 discs if you can afford it, and if you care at all about radio interviews (some of which aren't particularly long, if that helps). But those who just want the music can opt for the 2-disc set.

21 December, 2016

The Freddie Mercury Story: Who Wants To Live Forever

I just finished watching this and OMG! The reenactments continuously jumped between "So bad, they're good," and, "Bad. Just really bad!"

I appreciated the actor playing Freddie (John Blunt) clearly wanting to do right by Freddie, but the writing, other actors, and probable budget and licensing issues made me pause a few times because, "That's not what Freddie's Garden Lodge bedroom looked like! ... Freddie didn't smoke in 1975! ... That's not how the conversation went down when he and Mary broke up! ... etc." And then there was the one astonishingly TERRIBLE attempt at a New York/American accent! Although that might be a dig at every time an American tries any sort of English accent...

But I think some of the Queen fandom will rejoice when they see how Freddie and Roger act in this. Like the writers saw all the internet posts that have ever shipped Freddie and Roger and were like, "let's do a not-so-subtle nod to that!"

Here's a Youtube link for anyone who wants to see this in all its... glory? I guess?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nz67iGphRU8