When Brian May Guessed Freddie Mercury’s Reaction To Adam Lambert Replacing Him

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The fact that one of the biggest rock bands in the world continues to perform after going through the unfortunate event of their frontman passing away too soon is remarkable. The band in question is for sure Queen, since they continue to mesmerize fans with Adam Lambert today, as they did with Freddie Mercury years ago.

The most beautiful aspect of performing with Adam Lambert is that both he and the band are aware that no one can replace Freddie. Still, they have caught a perfect balance of combining Adam’s remarkable vocal talents with the authenticity of Brian May and Roger Taylor’s performance.

Brian first heard Adam in American Idol, where he took the first steps towards his successful career. Adam easily made it to the finals by leaving the judges speechless with his performances of many iconic songs like ‘Satisfaction,’ ‘Black or White,’ ‘Mad World,’ and more. Judging by his choice of music, he seemed to be inspired by rock and roll and knew that he wanted to follow that path.

In the show’s finale, he performed ‘We Are The Champions’ as a duet with his rival Kris Allen. The final duo surprised the audience by dramatically involving Brian and Roger in the performance. Although Kris won the competition, Adam’s career kickstarted after American Idol.

How Did Brian May Decide To Work With Adam Lambert?

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Even though there were two talented vocalists on stage that night, Brian had his eyes and ears on Adam as he had watched all his previous performances on the show before joining them live for the finale. When he first saw Adam, Brian immediately thought that he could be the ‘successor’ of Freddie and considered working with him. After the show, Queen made arrangements to involve Adam in their shows to see if they could sync as he wished they would.

Adam Lambert and Queen started to perform casually in 2011 and 2012. After receiving a fantastic reaction from the fans, they announced their first world tour together in 2014, followed by many others until today. Brian praises Adam and his talents at every chance he gets, and in his 2015 book ‘Queen in 3-D,’ he did the same. In the book, he revealed how his first reaction to Adam was that he could be the successor to Freddie and talked about how his energy was very positive.

Here are is what Brian said about Adam in ‘Queen in 3-D’:

“You must get together with this guy; he is the natural successor to Freddie; he is the guy you should be touring with. Then we got a call, Roger and I, inviting us to come and play in LA on American Idol, with the two finalists, one of whom was Adam. So we went over and did our live dramatic heroic entrance with these two boys, and it really was a fun experience.

They were both good singers, and both had a good presence on stage, and it was easy to interact with them. But it was really blindingly obvious that there was chemistry already between us, and Adam. It just happened completely naturally and made us all smile. The public reaction was massive, and so I think from that moment the idea of us working with Adam was seeded in our brains.”

What Would Freddie Think?

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In the book, Brian May also stated that he is confident that Adam would have gotten Freddie’s blessing and approval. As you may know, Freddie had a way of giving those he loved nicknames and spoke in elegant and unique words. Brian imitated Freddie in the book and stated that he would give Adam the nickname ‘Madam’ and hate him for being this original yet singing the band’s iconic songs very well.

Here is what Brian thinks Freddie would have said if he saw Adam:

“Roger and I have seen literally thousands of singers in our lifetimes, including some great ones auditioning for our We Will Rock You show (which, did I mention, ran for 12 solid years in The Dominion Theatre on the Tottenham Court Road in London?) but we’ve never seen or heard anything like Adam.

I always think that Freddie, with a wicked smile, would say something like ‘I hate you, Madam Lambert,’ because even Freddie would have been gobsmacked at his range and his ability to reinterpret these songs which the four of us originally created together.”

Even though some think that Queen should no longer perform because they have been on stage long enough, the band continues to honor Freddie’s legacy by fulfilling the wishes of the people who continue to be inspired by their songs and music.

On another note, as you know, the Queen + Adam Lambert tour got delayed because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but the iconic collaboration will get back on stage in 2022. The next thing the fans are looking forward to is a new Queen album. Although there hasn’t been an official announcement regarding an album together, both sides feel optimistic about the idea.