A fitness instructor has devised a work-out to help air guitar fans get into shape in their living rooms. US dance tutor Laila Hardman says by mimicking the likes of Slash and Eddie Van Halen people can develop all the major muscle groups.
She says by recreating the Townshend Windmill, the Angus Young Shuffle, the May Mosh and the Parfitt Sway to high-tempo rock music participants can have a "full-on cardo-vascular work-out." The instructor says the work-out has been modelled on Punk Rock Aerobics which has become popular in New York.
Ms Hardman said: "It works all the major muscle groups paying particular attention to the legs and the upper body, as elements of the class will incorporate free weights to mimic the weight of a real guitar."
The basic Air-Guitar-Aerobics moves can be found on www.musicchoice.co.uk. [It's Air Guitar Week over on there - check out the feature.]
Music Choice's main event channel, Sky Channel 480 is playing a selection air guitar tracks this week to promote the work-out.
It has been confirmed that Brian will play in both performances of WWRY London on Saturday 31 January - it is Mike Dixon's last day as Musical Director and Brian is doing this by way of saying 'thanks' to Mike.
If you are not lucky enough to have already booked for Saturday, it is worth checking with the Dominion for any ticket returns. You won't want to miss this. It will be special!!!
29, Jan., 2004
Deal All -
Again I want to thank you all for your support in this project of the 100th performance which Brian partook in. He played with the cast and band in Bohemian Rhapsody. The atmosphere was wonderful in the filled theatre, and the mood of the audience led to a spontaneous encore, again with Brian and the band playing a rendition of "Tie Your Mother Down". Brian was joined by Eva Maria Cortes ("Meat"), as principal vocalist. The crowd was ecstatic!
Luis Álvarez (Director)
THE CLIC dance 2004 gets under way this year on Friday, February 6, at Sand Bay Holiday Village, Weston, and there will be plenty to keep everyone entertained.
There will be live music on the night, with bands such as Swing Fever, Fab Beatles, Doctor Chocolate, Midnight Shadows, Jarrod Loughlin and Mirror Magic, spread over the main stage and the back bar. The Moulin Rouge girls will also put in an appearance.
There will be a raffle and a silent auction which will include a CLIC T-shirt signed by the cast of Emmerdale, some photos signed by the cast of EastEnders, a Bath rugby club photograph and other memorabilia.
But the big prize of the night will be an electric guitar signed by legendary Queen guitarist Brian May.
Sarah Cox is organising the event in her own time and every penny will go to CLIC.
Cick picture opposite for larger image
Anybody who would like to bid for the guitar can do so by telephoning Sarah on 0796 7709018 before Thursday, February 5.
The highest bidder will win two tickets to the event where they will be presented with the guitar.
Tickets cost £10 and bed and breakfast is also available for £10.
Tickets are available from Just For Fun, 56 Meadow St, Weston, Sand Bay Holiday Village on 01934 428200 and Sarah Cox on 0796 7709018.
Source: Weston & Worle News 22 Jan 04 (thanks to Helen Jackson)
A new compilation out 25th November 2003 V/A Harder and Heavier features Lemmy and Ted Nugent on Tie Your Mother Down... see review below. Suspect this same version as on the 1996 V/A Dragon Attack compilation CD (Revolver Records) - came in a tin.
Anyway this new compilation up for grabs,to win on www.electricbasement.com.........
Details and Track List:
HARDER AND HEAVIER
Released 25 November 2003 (Madacy)
01. Joe Lynn Turner - Back In Black
02. Kevin Dubrow - Welcome To The Jungle
03. Great White - Living Loving Maid
04. The Electric Hellfire Club - Shout At The Devil
05. Lemmy And Ted Nugent - Tie Your Mother Down
06. Tommy Shaw - Money
07. Phil Lewis - Bringing On The Heartache
08. Dee Snider - Walk All Over You
09. Kevin Dubrow - Whole Lotta Love
10. Kevin Dubrow - Highway To Hell
11. Jack Russell - Sin City
12. Kelly Hanson - Here I Am
13. Phil Lewis - D'yer Maker
14. Paul Dianno - Wrathchild
15. John Corabi - Wasted
16. Dee Dee Ramone - Jump In The Fire
from Review on electricbasement.com:
"VARIOUS ARTISTS- Harder and Heavier
(Madacy Entertainment Group)
. . .Hey wait, there's more! Lemmy and Ted Nugent retool "Tie Your Mother Down." Ironically Lemmy is as tonsil tattered as ever yet doing a silver golden throated Freddie Mercury song. We love Lemmy, but this guy's an iron lung on this one, minus the iron...and the lung! Gasping where Freddy leaped and soared. Okay, it's funny.Now enough. . .--Brian Coles "
Listen out to BBC Radio 2 this coming Sunday to the Russell Davies show when between 4-5pm GMT, Russell will be playing a song from the soon to be released PORTER/PEARSON album. Catherine will also be doing an interview with Russell in the next few weeks that will be broadcast on March 7th. Listen out and if you like it, let them know!
Here's a rockin' good cook book soon to be available:
in the USA January 2004
"Everybody loves food. Everybody loves music. Put the two together and you have a cookbook guaranteed to stir the senses and tickle the tastebuds. Here kitchen godess Marge Lapanja and rocker Cindy Coverdale have cooked up sheer delight where everyone gets a front row seat, a backstage pass and dinner. Cleverly organized like a concert, this cookbook leads you through recipes from your favourite singing stars". WH Smith
"Broken down into chapters entitled, "Opening Act," "Special Guest," "Headliner," "Encore" and "Jam Session," "FOOD THAT ROCKS" allows artists as diverse as Patti LaBelle, Billy Corgan, Shania Twain, Brian May and Bob Weir to share some ideas on food and music that would never have found print sans this book. Each artist's contribution is accompanied with a biography and short Q & A that leaves this collection as good a Rock and Roll read as it is a reference for what to make before a night out headbanging." Cindy Coverdale Interview, Electricbasement.com
Thanks to Richard Anderson
Ed: More artists who contributed recipes...
Jamie Mosedas, Spike Edney, Paul Young, Tony Hadley, Eric Singer, Andy & Steve Hamilton and Patti Russo plus more
For info on the book check out www.foodthatrocks.com
Write up on Brian from Guitar World - 100 Greatest Metal Guitarists of all Time:
If massiveness and high drama are metal's cardinal virtues, then Brian May is the genre's Richard Wagner and Andrew Lloyd Webber rolled into one. His Seventies and Eighties recordings with Queen were a revelation and are still as inspirational. Armed with multitrack technology, his homemade Red Special guitar and a mountain of Vox AC30s, May could - and still can - sculpt orchestral soundscapes of astounding breadth, depth, pomp and circumstance.
May and Queen drummer Roger Taylor performed at an AIDS benefit concert in Cape Town, South Africa, on November 29, 2003, and collaborated on a new Queen single, "46664, The Call," to draw attention to the AIDS epidemic in Africa. May also marshaled his fellow ax heroes to perform on The Best Air Guitar Album in the World III, the third and final (or so he insists) installment of the popular Air Guitar series."
Source: June Burke
The official 3rd Annual 2004 Australian Air Guitar Championships (AAGC)
Qualifying Rounds kick off in February at venues throughout the Nation culminating with State and Territory finals mid March. The Australian National final will be held on Friday night 02/4/04 at ‘Panthers World of Entertainment’, Penrith Leagues Club, Penrith, NSW.
Once again, ‘wanna be rock stars’ are being summonsed from their ‘private studios’ (bed & living rooms) to participate in the AAGC in order to find ‘the greatest guitarist in Australia who never played’ who will ultimately go onto represent the country at the 9th annual Air Guitar World Championships (AGWC), Finland, August 2004.
The 2003 AGWC attracted a large field of competitors from Canada, USA, UK, Ireland, Austria, Norway, Finland, Germany, Belgium and Sweden, New Zealand and Australia. David "C-Diddy" Jung, an actor from Brooklyn USA, won the event with Australia’s representative, 2003 National & NSW State Champ, Mark ‘Roxy McStagger’ Hadfield placing a very respectable 3rd overall.
Entry into the AAGC is free and entry forms are available from participating venues – competition & venue details below. Great prizes are up for grabs, including the major prize of a trip for one to Europe to attend and compete in the 2004 AGWC.
further AAGC & other essential air guitar information please visit:
Practice till ya fingers bleed!!
04 AAGC Competition & Venue details:
CAIRNS – ‘Fox & Firkin’ Pub. Fri - 20/2/04. PH: 07 40315305.
ROCKHAMPTON – ‘Strutters’ Night Club. Sat - 28/2/04. PH: 07 49222882.
HERVERY BAY – ‘Pialba Hotel’. Sat - 14/2/04. PH: 07 41242711.
GOLD COAST – ‘Sugar Shack’ Bar & Cafe. Heat 1: Sun - 15/2/04, Heat 2:
Sun - 22/2/04, Heat 3: Sun - 29/2/04 & Final: Sun - 7/3/04. PH: 07
NEW SOUTH WALES
BEACHES – ‘Mona Vale Hotel’. Heat 1: Thur - 05/2/04, Heat
Thur - 12/2/04,
Heat 3: Thur - 19/2/04 & Final: Thur - 26/2/04. PH: 02 99994212.
WEST – ‘Panthers World of Entertainment’. Heat 1: Thur - 05/2/04, Heat
2: Thur - 12/2/04,
Heat 3: Thur - 19/2/04 & Final: Thur - 26/2/04. PH: 02 47205522.
MACQUARIE Uni – SAM. Tues - 02/3/04. PH: 02 98507605.
CENTRAL COAST – ‘Wyong Rugby League Club’. Heat 1: Sat - 07/2/04, Heat
2: Sat - 14/2/04
& Final: Sat - 21/2/04. PH: 02 43922799.
COFF’S HARBOUR – ‘Coffs Ex Services Club’. Sat - 14/2/04. PH: 02
WOLLONGONG – ‘Palm Court Hotel’. Fri – 20/2/04. PH: 02 42844086.
– ‘Depot Hotel’. Sun - 29/2/04. PH: 03 9427 0500
ALBERT PARK – ‘Red Eagle Hotel’. Sat - 21/2/04. PH: 03 9699 9744
GEELONG – ‘Geelong Hotel’. Sat - 07/2/04. PH: 03 5221 5699
GIPPSLAND – ‘Sale Rocks Festival’, Sale. Sat - 21/2/04. PH: 0412
– ‘Viper Room’ (Berkeley Hotel). Heat 1: Wed - 04/2/04
2: Wed - 11/2/04.
PH: 08 82702383.
– ‘Saloon Bar’ (Hotel Tasmania). Heat 1: Fri - 27/2/04
Heat 2: Fri - 05/3/04.
PH: 03 63317355.
PERTH – ‘White Sands Tavern’. Heat 1: Sun - 29/2/04 & Heat 2: Sun -
07/3/04. PH: 08 93418451
KALGOORLIE – ‘Judds Kalgoorlie Hotel’. Sun - 22/2/04. PH: 08 90213046.
GERALDTON – ‘Geraldton Hotel. Fri – 20/2/04. PH: 08 99213700.
MARGARET RIVER – ‘Settlers Tavern. Thur – 19/2/04. PH: 08 97572398
– ‘Top End Hotel’. Heat 1: SAT - 28/2/04 & Heat 2:
06/3/04. PH: 08 89816511.
ALICE SPRINGS – ‘Todd Tavern’. Fri – 06/2/04. PH: 08 89521255STATE & TERRITORY FINALS
QLD: GOLD COAST – ‘Sugar Shack’ Bar & Cafe. Fri - 12/3/04. PH: 07
NSW: PENRITH - ‘Panthers World of Entertainment’. Fri - 12/3/04. PH:
VIC: MELBOURNE – ‘Metro Night Club’. Sat - 13/3/04. PH: 03 9663 4288.
SA: ADELAIDE – ‘Viper Room’ (Berkeley Hotel). Wed 18/2/04. PH: 08
TAS: LAUNCESTON – ‘Saloon Bar’ (Hotel Tasmania). Fri - 12/3/04. PH:
WA: PERTH - ‘White Sands Tavern’. Sun – 14/3/04. PH: 08 93418451
NT: DARWIN – ‘Top End Hotel’. Sat - 13/3/04. PH: 08 89816511. AUSTRALIAN NATIONAL GRAND FINAL
PENRITH, NSW - ‘Panthers World of Entertainment’. Fri - 02/4/04. PH:
Brian and Beyonce Mixing - Photo courtesy of Pepsi
FOR DUTCH LANGUAGE - CLICK HERE
Many Queen fans and friends, some of whom had come from far afield - Austria and Germany, gathered in good time, in the spacious hallway, where a bar for refreshments had been set up, and saw Brian arrive. He was wearing a warm dark overcoat. It was quite a cold nIght. He was greeted by organisers and disappeared into the auditorium.
Shortly after the audience filed into their seats and waited…
It was Professor Tim Wilson, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Hertfordshire, who went on stage to warm applauds, and introduced Brian May...
PROFESSOR TIM WILSON:
"Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the Auditorium, De Havilland Campus, University of Hertfordshire. This evening is part of our Spring UH Arts events programme and this evening's event, the proceeds from this event will be going towards the Mercury Phoenix Trust, which is an AIDS foundation in memory of Freddie Mercury.
Those of you who know me well will be pleased to know that I'm not intending to sing [audience laughs] or even make a speech. All I'd like to do is introduce Brian May."
[HUGE APPLAUDS then a lull.. laugh and then MORE APPLAUDS]
This is a beautiful place. I never expected anything quite like this and I'm just gonna savour the moment. [audience laughs] You have to do that, don't you. [Looks out into the auditorium]
I feel very happy to be here, very grateful and a little nervous and really excited, a lot excited because I have been looking forward to this for some time - and I'm thrilled that you wanna have me here basically.
Give me one minute…. [runs off stage and returns brandishing his Speech Notes]
[LAUGHING... MORE APPLAUDS]
Thank you. Thank you thricewise.
I'm not gonna talk an awful lot to begin with. I think, I know you will ask questions, which is great. I'm not in a hurry. I might even be playing a little bit. [audience laughs]
Can you hear me okay? [audience "Yes"]
The few words that I'm gonna say are gonna be more about life than about music, because that's kind of the way I am, I think. You know music is my big passion and my big love, but I always still think that it's life first, then music second.
I hope I've calculated okay because I had thought I was gonna be speaking to students and undergraduates and I can SEE [audience laughs] you're not really undergraduates, but you're all younger than me, so it's gonna be fun. So I can treat you like children anyway.
Okay. I'm gonna say a few words - I've called my little few words - TURNING THE OTHER CHEEK...
The album that Brian May co-produced with Mack came out on CD 20 November 2003 on Majestic Rock....
Here's a blurb....
"Scotland`s Heavy Pettin` released two hard rockin` but remarkably polished albums for Polydor in the early 80`s. This, the first of them, was produced by Queen`s Brian May and sets the band`s stall out admirably. At the time, the band sat shoulder-to-shoulder with Def Leppard as the British hard rock act `most likely to...` Well, we all know how that story ends.
Tracks like `In And Out Of Love` and `Hell Is Beautiful` are prime slabs of 80`s melodic hard rock. Finally available on CD for the first time, this album is bolstered by the inclusion of two bonus tracks previously only available as single b-sides.
Out Of Love
Love On The Run
Victims Of The Night
Shout It Out
Hell Is Beautiful
Shadows Of The Night (Bonus Track)
Love Times Love
Devil In Her Eyes
The Dice (Bonus Track)
There are also some short sound samples on:
Thanks to Richard Anderson
According to The Mirror newspaper today:
about an unlikely duo. Beyonce and Brian May have collaborated on
a track for the new Pepsi advert. The soft drinks giant will have
a global premiere of the commercial in London later this month, attended
by its stars - Beyonce, Pink and Britney Spears.
Source: Daily Mirror
CLICK HERE to see new additions to gallery.
After speaking and answering questions for over an hour...
"I’ll turn the hiss on.. This is what I’ve lived with all my life... can you still hear me?... I have to turn.... A very expensive roadie...[referring to Pete Malandrone]. . [audience laughs].
To demonstrate hiss, Brian played a few chords that could have been opening to Slow Hammer or an improv that could lead into We Will Rock You just a slow chord progression.
Demonstrated one amp - a few chords
Added a second amp for moving delay – to add a breadth, sweetness to the sound – demo-ed a few chords.
Turned it up to get distortion... gradually... and demo-ed distortion.
Talked about bending a string to the side to alter the pitch - demo-ed String Bending.
Demo-ed Faint Classical Vibrato
Got the audience to Stamp Stamp Clap and when the rhythm established, played We Will Rock You (no singing) - very improvised, and back into usual finishing chords of WWRY.
Brighton Rock – not all of but quite a long section.
More questions.... then later...
Brian talked about Lonnie Donegan then a burst of a song "Puttin' On The Style", which the audience joined in on the chorus...
"Sweet Sixteen goes to church just to see the boys
Laughs and screams and giggles at every little noise
Turns her face a little, then turns her head a while
But we know she’s only
Puttin' on the style"
(Chorus) "She's puttin' on the agony,
Puttin on the style
That's what all the young folks
Are doin' all the while
And as I look around me
I sometimes have to smile
Seeing all the young folks
Puttin' on the style"
and the Rock Island Line... told a bit of the story then sang and played..
in American accent) "And as the driver goes through the station
And he thinks he's safely on the other side
Gets up a little bit of steam
And a little bit of speed
And he goes… I'll tell you where I'm going boy"
Chorus) "Now the rock island line is a mighty good road
Rock island line is the road to ride
The rock island line is a mighty good road
If you want to ride you gotta ride it like you find it
Get your ticket at the station of the rock island line"
DEVOTED fans, science scholars and wannbe rock stars alike were enthralled as a veteran guitarist took centre stage at the University of Hertfordshire's new auditorium, writes Jo Arthur.
Queen star Brian May came on stage in a pair of faded black jeans, a tailored black jacket and a pair of white trainers.
Despite playing to a crowd of thousands on a regular basis, as his fans welcomed him to the campus with deafening applause he seemed genuinely nervous.
"I'm a little nervous and a little excited," he said.
"I've been looking forward to this for some time and I'm thrilled that you wanted to have me here."
He resisted reaching for his guitar for over an hour while he pondered 'life, the universe and everything' during a two-and-a-half hour set.
After an informal speech he opened himself up to questions which spanned philosophy, childhood, relationships and the future of the band.
Asked if they planned to tour again Brian replied: "I hope to see you again, hopefully with the boys and playing with the band. You've given me a lot of energy tonight."
Proceeds from the Evening with Brian May went to the Mercury Phoenix Trust - an AIDS charity, in memory of Freddie Mercury.
Reprinted from Welwyn & Hatfield Times Wed 14 January 2004 (with permission)
Here are initial details of a Red Special/Brian May Clinic to held in Guatamala as follows:
Title: Clinica sobre Brian May y su Red Special: su Influencia en el rock (Clinic about Brian May and his Red Special and the influence in rock) by the members of the tribute band and some Guatemalan guest artists.
Date: (we have no official date yet) March the 25rd
Location: 4 Grados Norte, Guatemala, Central America
Includes: Printed Material with BM’s Bio and RS’s details, CD with Brian’s solos from Queen songs.
Price: Q50 (í4)
This event comes along with some activities related to Queen including a gig with the Tribute Band, a karaoke night, a collector’s exposition and many more, all these will happen in an entire week in the same location. The date details will be sent to you when they are agreed.
Keep Yourself Alive!
Queen Fan Club Guatemala
Legendary Queen guitarist Brian May, recently appeared for one very special night at the University of Hertfordshire. Check out Lesley Young's write-up for the BBC HERE
Lesley [you know, 'The Girl From the BBC Who Stood On a Table'] pictured with Brian HERE - Courtesy of photographer, Peter Hoare.
This is relevant since Brian has put R.E.M. "The One I Love" on The Best Air Guitar Album In The World III.
I have just read the following from the book "It Crawled From The South: An R.E.M. Companion" by Marcus Gray.
[Ed: Unfortunately then, the author gets it entirely wrong.]
"Peter Buck says the orchestral-sounding multilayered electric-guitar solo on 'Drive' is his tribute to Queen's Brian May. 'It's a Les Paul through a big Marshall amp, overdubbed six times and picked with a coin. I know Brian May uses some kind of English sixpence that's probably three thousand years old, but I just used a dime.' Unfortunately it was Queen's bass player John Deacon who used the sixpence, but it's the thought that counts..."
Lesley Young was at the University of Hertfordshire to interview Brian. "He said that Marlene Dietrich made photographers stand on boxes, so I stood on a table to take his photo."
Many thanks to Lesley Young of www.bbc.co.uk/threecounties/
From 8 January 2004 Re-opening
Reports below - keep checking for more pictures
UNIVERSITY OF HERTS,
9 JANUARY 2004
Report and more pictures to follow.
*Correction: The event was attended by over 200 people!!! [Thank you to Barry Moorhouse for the information.]
MAY AT HOUSE OF GUITARS
BRUNE ST, LONDON
Thursday 8 January 2004.
BARRY MOOREHOUSE: One – two
Ladies and gents, thanks for coming down to The House of Guitars. Twenty years in Wapping, a few months here, and we’re very very very privileged to have somebody officially open the store. Gonna cut this ribbon in front of you, and then, to quote Brian, he’s gonna "make some noise" - I think.
Could you give a big welcome … MR BRIAN MAY!!!
BRIAN MAY: Previously we had a little conference about this… we decided the ribbon was gonna get in the way, so we’re just gonna do the ribbon thing now, okay –
SO - I DECLARE THIS RECORD SHOP OPEN!!!!!
[Cheering and clapping]
Down darling. Thanks mate, thank you.
Any guitarists in here?
BM: Great. I’ll just say a couple of words. I’ve known
Barry for a very long time and in this business we all start off small and
if we’re lucky we get big enough to fulfill some of our dreams, and
Barry’s fulfilled a lot of his own dreams and he’s also helped
a lot of us to fulfill ours - so I’d like to say a big, huge round
of applause to Barry, please. Give it up. [Clapping]
BM: Yeah, yeah..
I’ve no idea if this is gonna work. I asked Pete at the beginning of this to, in fact a few hours ago, to set up some stuff around the room. Where are they, Pete? Ah they’re here. Oh, I thought they were gonna be further away. Well. This is the little amp which currently we are selling. So, I mean I don’t like to sell stuff, you know, but, you know, if you fancy buying one of these then [mumbles]……
So I shall see if it works. We have three, I think, at this particular moment in time….
- Intro chords…
- AMAZING GRACE – verse on guitar
BM: It seems to be working anyway. [Clapping and whistling]
- (continues Amazing Grace in style of slow Hammer to Fall)
- BRIGHTON ROCK (clapping extract) - AUDIENCE CLAPS ALONG
- CHINESE TORTURE
[Clapping and cheering]
You're very kind. Thank you. I know all of you can play a lot better than
I used to be allowed to make a noise, you know. If anybody… I don’t have anything to do for the next like 3 minutes, so [laughs] if anybody has any questions, I’d be happy to, to take a couple if you want, if there’s anything you wanna know.,
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Brazil, was it 81, I saw you in Sao Paulo?
BM: I couldn't tell ya.
It coulda been Sao Paulo in 81. Yeah about 81 probably.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Brian, which album?
BM: Which album? What - the one in my head. I’d seriously like to make another album, you know, sort of guitar music. There will be a time. I’d love to - thank you for asking me.
At the moment I’m working on a Madrid Cast Album, which is actually great. It's got a couple of great guitar players in Madrid in our show, in the We Will Rock You Show, and the cast are very good singers, so I’ve been working on putting their lines together, which should be out in a month’s time.
Last night I was working on a Pepsi advert. [Laughing]
Now you may laugh and I laugh as well, but these people came to us and said ‘We’d like to use We Will Rock You as a tune for our next TV commercial. Whaddaya think?’ And they said they’d pay us lots of money so we went ‘Nah’. [Laughing]
And then they said ‘Well we’ve got these three singers, who want to sing it and we want you to produce the singers – now we’ve got Britney Spears, we’ve got Pink, and we’ve got Beyonce…. And er… [Laughing]
…‘Do you still want to say No’. and I went: 'Nah, nah, nah, I’ll do it.' [Laughter]
So I had a great time when I was mixing some of that stuff yesterday,
and that’s kind of what I get up to these days… all kinds of
stuff, apart from Astronomy.
Does anybody read my website stuff?
CROWD: Yes!!!! [Cheering]
BM: You know I get myself into all kinds of trouble because I shoot my mouth off on my Soapbox about all kinds of things. The most recent thing was about Whales. I got myself into lots of trouble about whales, because I figured people shouldn’t be eating them in this day and age – but I got loads of people writing saying 'You know you shouldn’t be eatin' cows at this point' – and I think they have a point. So I’m gonna leave that one now. [laughing]
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Brian, where is there to go after Buckingham Palace?
BM: After Buckingham Palace, where is there to go? Well the only way is down I suppose, [laughing] It was a great, great moment of sort of conquering fear that for me, it really was. It was a life changing experience.
But I was scared today, I gotta tell ya. I mean, you guys are all great guitar players. I know what it's like you’re all watching my fingers. I mean what the HELL can I play these people that they’d be remotely interested in. But - I don’t know - the answer to that. There’s always new challenges. We recently did a concert for Nelson Mandella and that was a big challenge as well. There was a lot of responsibility on the shoulders when that came up - thank you - yeah. It came off quite well I think. Not very well on English TV, cos you never saw us on. But the DVD will be out at some point so you’ll actually get to see what we did. And we wrote a couple of new songs for that, which I think MIGHT be the start of Queen doing some stuff. You know it’s always on the horizon you know - do we actually make another Queen album? And it’s been a thorny question for a some time. A lot of people seem to think that Roger and I can sing… which is nice.
[Chuckling … cheering]
But, you know, it ain’t the same without - without our dear old Fred you know … it ain't the same and it’s never gonna be the same so it's always gonna be a matter of debate and you know, whatever you do in this life, I mean it's particular more conspicuous you are, the more stuff you do, the more you get divided opinion. Some people say “Wonderful, wonderful!”, and some people will hate you.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: … The British Press?
BM: Yeah, yeah – normally. [Laughing]
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Is there a usable British robot on Mars? [Laughing]
BM: I thought on those pictures that the Americans got, there might be a kind of little piece of wreckage someplace. [Laughing] It’s very sad, isn't it? I hate to say it, but I didn't think it was gonna work. [Laughing] I don't know why. I just didn't. You know, I saw the guy on TV saying this is gonna unfold, and this is gonna happen and the whole thing is gonna crash into the surface of Mars, and then I thought … but there you go, it’s not for me to say. I'm, I'm sad, and you know, they may get it working hopefully…. [tails off]
AUDIENCE MEMBER: What’s your favourite song you’ve ever written? . . . Mine is Sail Away Sweet Sister?
BM: Ah thank you. Uh yeah… I’m fond of Sail Away Sweet Sister, thank you.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: I like ’39.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Last Horizon…
BM: Last Horizon?
[Audience all agree]
BM: [Laughing] My favourite song is the one I haven’t written yet, which will be the best song in the world.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Will there be a DTS version of Queen II?
BM: It’s very much on the cards. We’ have been talking about Queen II.
[Inaudible audience comment]
BM: Thank you. Yeah. It’s nice to make a non-commercial decision. [inaudible] . . . Yeah it would be fascinating to do.
The problem with some of that old stuff is that we don’t have every single master tape. I think Queen II we might just about be alright. You know archiving's a real problem - things fall to bits and they disappear. There is no master tape for, for instance, God Save The Queen - it's a multi track that I did. So if anyone finds it, please let us know. It disappeared.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Brian, I'm coming to see you tomorrow at the University of Hertfordshire.
BM: Ah - God !!!!
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Are you playing a little bit tomorow?
BM: Yes I probably will play tomorrow. What the hell am I gonna play tomorrow? [laughs] Oh alright, same again. [laughing]
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Question about who taught Brian to play guitar.
QUESTION NOT HEARD….
BM: Who taught me to play the guitar? My dad really taught me the basics, cos he taught me how to play the ukulele banjo, which is a little instrument that looks like a banjo but much smaller, has 4 strings like a ukulele. It’s a George Formby instrument. George Formby in the 20’s, who made it famous. My dad taught me, I don't know, about 8 to 10 chords on the ukulele and I adapted them when I got a guitar. I asked for a guitar for my seventh birthday and I was lucky enough to get one.
I just discovered, the guitar I got for my seventh birthday was a thing called an Egmond Frere model – French… Belgian actually - Belgian guitar - and I think cost about £3.50. And apparently George Harrison had exactly the same thing. I never ever knew until his model was sold at auction a couple of weeks ago, for how much?… like a quarter of a MILLION pounds or something…. [Laughing]… was paid for this guitar. Unbelievable - so I’m open to offers.
I'm not actually. I'll never parting with that guitar.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Is your favourite film still A Clockwork Orange?
AUDIENCE MEMBER: [repeats question] Is your favourite film still A Clockwork Orange?
BM: No, no, my favourite film isn't . . . Did I say that at one time? What did I say my favourite colour was?
Nah - I didn't - I think my favourite film is… It's difficult to say really … I love that film where the guy wakes up every day and it looks the same.
AUDIENCE: Groundhog Day
BM: Groundhog Day. Yeah. I like that. I like films that teach you to live your life a little better. I really enjoy that film. Thank you.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Will Furia come out over here?
AUDIENCE MEMBER: The French film that you . . .
BM: Furia… I doubt it will come out over here. It will remain a collector’s item… until they do the 'Brian May Boxed Set', [audience laughs] which will bore everyone to death.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Can we buy the DTS of The Game yet?
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Can we buy the DTS of The Game yet?
BM: It is out. It's difficult to find. No one knows why . . . it's out there. Yes.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Brian… [from back]
BM: Hello !!
AUDIENCE MEMBER: [a little inaudible] Is playing guitar difficult?
BM: I don’t think playing guitar is. Is playing guitar difficult?
A mixed answer here. I think it’s not…, no, I don't think it is hard to play, you know if you pick it up every day and it becomes your friend - you’re just gonna become a guitarist. There’s no way around it. It’s difficult to be a good guitarist. I’m still trying, believe me…
Some people like Steve Vai, and some people like Eddie Van Halen, like Joe Satriani. And I think . . . [inaudible] practice. But the great thing about the guitar is that all of us somehow and it’s a mystery, it's a mystery. All of us some how get a bit of our personality to the guitar. Everyone I’ve ever seen pick up a guitar, who knows anything at all about it, has a particular style and their personality comes through. I think it’s to do with elasticity of the strings or something. I’m not gonna get highly technical [audience laughs] but there is something about it. You know, the harder you hit the guitar, the angrier it sounds. You know, the harder you squeeze things up, you know, the pitch thing goes . . . So it’s a very expressive instrument. I’d say, if you fancy it and can get into it - you'll become a guitarist.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Any chance of the Brian May Band again?
AUDIENCE MEMBER: [repeats the question] Any chance of the Brian May Band, or is that…?
BM: Brian May Band? No I don’t feel at all like a Brian May Band person at the moment. I seem to be wearing my . . . [tails off]
Almost, I guess, against my will, the soft of umbrella of Queen always draws me back in and I spent a lot of time really struggling really hard to be free of Queen and now I’ve sort of given in and I accept the fact Queen will always be a part of me and I will always be a part of it. And for a lot of the work that we do, I guess we get to a wider audience if we do call it Queen, which is a very nice thing and all the channels that we worked so hard to open up in the early days we can use… so.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: What will you do about your video of the Albert Hall . . . [inaudible] ?
BM: It never came out. I mean, it may do one day.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Do you still practice your scales?
BM: No - I don’t practice the scales. [laughing] I should do, shouldn’t I. See, that’s what I should do - you see, if I want to be like Steve Vai, I would practice my scales. I don't know.
I don’t play the guitar every day either. I just pick it when I want so that's my sort of… well… I’ve never picked up a guitar as a chore, as something I have to practice. It's always been something that I love to pick up because it makes me feel good and I think it should stay that way. I recommend that to anyone. Let the guitar be your friend. Don't ever let it be something . . . [inaudible]
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Any chance of appearing with the guy from We Will Rock You?
BM: Tony Vincent? Tony Vincent’s gone back to New York for the time being, cos he’s chiselling out his own solo career. You know, we may do something together at some time. I’m in touch with him all the time. We e-mail each other all the time. I don't know.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: How are you today Brian?
BM: [laughs] How am I? That's a very nice question. I’m very good thank you. I'm very happy and grateful and blessed and stuff. I can’t believe what happened to me over all these years really. I can’t believe I’m standing here in front of all you guys and you actually wanna listen.
I have this recurring nightmare where I go on stage and it’s a big, packed place. It's like Wembley Stadium or something, you know. And I start playing with the guys, and I think Fred's there. Everyone's there. Most of my dreams Freddie’s still alive – it's very odd - it doesn’t seem odd to me. So I have this dream when we are out there and we start playing and gradually people go [tilts his head one side, then the other] like that and then they kinda drift out [laughing] and in the end there’s no one left. [More laughing] There’s just us on stage and we go ‘Ah well. Whatever.’ And we just play. It’s very strange feeling…
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Are you naked?
BM: Yeah, we’re naked as well.
BM: I should probably wrap it up.
Thank you for coming and keep coming to Barry’s store please, cos Barry’s one of the good guys and we love him. He’s been fantastic with us.
Good luck with your guitar playing and lots of love.
From Audience…. BRIAN MAY!!!!
BARRY MOOREHOUSE: Just before Brian does leave us, I think there’s a possibility he may sign a couple of autographs. I've got a couple of things that I'd actually like to, just to give to him. We were very privileged in the last few years actually to do a project with Brian where we financed, marketed and licensed the Burns Brian May guitar, and hopefully Brian would agree it’s been a very successful project and we were privileged, through Future Music who publish ‘Total Guitar’ and ‘Guitarist’, to win ‘Guitar of the Year’ and I’d liKe to give Brian that award.
[APPLAUDS AND CHEERING]
BARRY MOOREHOUSE: And finally, one gets a lot of recommendations and strange referrals in this business from time to time. Anyway just before Christmas I got a phone call from a lady who said, and the call came into the office, and said there's a lady here been recommended to you from the famous TV personality and astronomer, Patrick Moore. I went 'OK'…. You know, today’s sort of lucky one. And anyway, the lady wanted an E-bow. Couldn’t get one anywhere on the South Coast so we despatched one to her immediately and - Brian obviously knows this, nodding about it - but I didn’t sort of connect initially, so I then started to talk to the lady, ‘How did Patrick Moore recommend us?’ And she said: ‘Me, Patrick Moore, Brian May, Astronomy.’ And I thought ‘Ah’. Brian May, Brian had said ‘Contact these guys’. Fortunately, the E-Bow was on its way immediately.
So, you know, we’ve had a very good relationship with Brian. He’s helped us out. Been involved in the MI side of the industry, which a lot of people other than my late friend, John Entwistle, do not do. These two guys do. We thought we’d like to present him with something that combines both of his passions in life, so we’re gonna give him back one of his Brian May Signature models, [audience laughter] but with a few constellations on it.
[CHEERING AND CLAPPING - Barry presents guitar with lights on fretboard.]
BM: I’ll expect Pete to. . . [inaudible]
Ladies and Gentlemen - a big thank you - MR BRIAN MAY.
"The surge in the number of squash rackets tucked under City desks today is not because of a new year fitness spurt. Rather, it is the appearance in the parish of Brian May, once a member of Queen. The strummer has agreed to open The House of Guitars' new shop in the City's Brune Street tonight. May normally avoids the store opening scene but feels he owes a debt of thanks to Barry Moorhouse, House of Guitars' managing director and a world authority on the bass guitar... "
Guardian Thurs 08 Jan
BUSINESSMEN FIND NEW WAY TO SURVIVE MIDLIFE CRISIS AS GUITARS ROCK THE CITY
"The days when the only Fender a businessman needed to stave off a midlife crisis was on the end of a Ferrari are gone. In 2004 he needs to dig deep and purchase the Fender Jazz Bass he dreamed of as an acne-ridden youth.
Guitars have seen a massive resurgence in the past few years, propping up the music retail industry and overtaking the keyboard. Sales of electric guitars have jumped 30 per cent in two years, bass guitars 11 per cent in the past 12 months and now the instrument and its accessories account for almost a third of a £700m market.
New guitar bands such as The Darkness have helped to get rock back in vogue. Even the Prime Minister is partial to strumming a few chords. Now bonus-wielding City lawyers and stockbrokers have also caught the bug.
Barry Moorhouse, whose bass and acoustic centre, House of Guitars, has long been a Mecca for rock stars, recognised the trend and relocated his business to Brune Street on the edge of the City. On Thursday night his pal Brian May of the rock band Queen opened the new shop.
Mr Moorhouse said: "A lot of high-end acoustic guitars were being bought by doctors and dentists. Dealing with a rock star clientele, location is not important. If Jon Bon Jovi is in town, it doesn't matter whether you are in Wapping or Knightsbridge, so we moved to the City to cover the new demand."
The wisdom of the move was evident at the new shop's opening when insurance brokers and IT consultants appeared at his door like disciples drawn to a shrine.
Silently they stood eyeing the gleaming rainbow of guitars angular or curvaceous, simple or ostentatious.
Charlie Pearch, 46, a customer, explained: "I'm having a midlife crisis. First I bought a Harley Davidson and then I thought I would learn to play the guitar." "
By Terri Judd
Source: The Independent, Saturday 10 January 2004
Brian, scissors in hand, about to cut the ribbon
"I DECLARE THIS RECORD SHOP OPEN!!"
On Thursday 8 January 04, people were gathering at The House Of Guitars in Brune Street, London, E1, awaiting the arrival of Brian May, who was scheduled to be officially re-opening The House of Guitars, following its recent move to new premises.
Hospitality was excellent, and there was a free bar on hand. Thank you House of Gutiars!!
Brian arrived at about 6.30 pm and Barry Moorhouse, the owner, went on stage and introduced him. It had been decided to do the cutting the ribbon bit first to get that out of the way , so brandishing a pair of scissors Brian announced in his normal good humour... "I declare this Record Shop open!!!" (House of Guitars being a Guitar shop.. but never mind!)
Then Brian plugged in the real Red Special after checking with Pete Malandrone that they had several little Vox BMS amps plugged in, and proceded to 'make some noise'.
Brian played af medley of
Amazing Grace... which evolved into Hammer to Fall style
- Brighton Rock extract (the clapping section)
- Chinese Torture
After much applauds and cheering from *over 200 fans and guitarists, Brian then said that he had nothing to do for the next like 3 minutes and would be happy to answer questions anyone might have...
Full transcript shortly.
Brian with Tommy Hubbard (age 14) winner of Riffathon 2003
The man to the left is an exec from Guitar magazine (we think).. Does Brian look so darling in this picture ?! - looks like he wants to eat this guitar! Cute! Tommy's Mum - Andrea
RIFFATHON 2003 - SURREY UNIVERSITY - December 20th 2003
Extracts from report by Mick Bulow (with permission- thanks)
The Riffathon opened with a superb acoustic set by Newton Battenberg Faulkner. Jimmy & Jimena Page, Brian May of Queen, and other judges entered to a standing ovation, followed by speeches from Ian Edwards, creator of Riffathon and Jimena Page.
The 10 finalists were then randomly allocated a Zeppelin track to perform with a support band. Jimmy and Brian watched attentively as they worked their way through Jimmy's riffs.
The auction that followed included signed CDs and DVD's, the top items being a painting of Jimmy Page by Joe Painter and a guitar signed by both Jimmy and Brian. Brian May himself tried to outbid a member of the audience for a signed Led Zeppelin DVD.
The judges were then called up onto the stage. Another speech from Jimmy about the guitar and what it has meant to him, the performances and the event. Brian May followed with a comment about him being probably one of the biggest Led Zep fans in the room!
Youngest contestant - 14 year old Tommy Hubbard, who gave an excellent performance of Ramble On, was declared the winner for a truly amazing demonstration and interpretation of a classic Zeppelin track.
Photo: Karen Badman
Full report HERE
VOX AMPS are offering you the chance to win a VOX Brian May Special Amp Personally signed by Brian May. No purchase necessary but you must be at least 18 years of age to enter. Competition is only open to UK and Rupublic of Ireland residents. Competition runs till 31 Jan 2004, so get your entries in soon.
TO FIND OUT MORE AND TO ENTER COMPETITION: CLICK HERE
and in case you missed it... here's the great Vox Ad using Brian's picture on the palace roof....
From "We Are The Champions: to "Bohemian Rhapsody" and beyond, Brian May's unmistakable guitar sound has been an essential part of the magic that's made Queen one of rock's most beloved bands. On stage, Brian has always relied on his trademark wall of AC30s. But in the studio, he plugged into a small, custom-made amp and booster pedal. Lucky for you, this precious little piece of rock history was showing its age and becoming way too fragile. So, Brian approached VOX with the idea of creating a small amp, with built-in booster pedal that could reproduce his signature, silky tone, plus a range of other cool tones. Introducing the Brian May Special. This compact 10 Watt combo amp lets Brian achieve the sound his recordings are famous for, and it will do the same for you. As an added bonus, the VBM1 booster circuit can also be used to drive your other amps. VOX WILL ROCK YOU.
THE VOX BRIAN MAY SPECIAL
As at this morning, tickets were still available from the Box Office, University of Herts, at the original price.
Houes of Guitars shop in Brune Street, London E1 will have a grand re-opening on Thursday evening, 8 January, at 6pm, and Brian has been asked to do the honours. The shop is near Liverpool Street Station. See Brian's reply - Letters 1 Jan 04
Brian says: I don't normally open things, but I owe a great debt of gratitude to Barry Moorhouse so I agreed to go down and make some kind of noise!!! It should be fun (Pete Malandrone assures me!!)
Sanctuary Records will re-issue the long-lost debut album 'Quartz' by Quartz, in early 2004. The album will feature secret guest appearances from Tony Iommi, Ozzy Osbourne and Brian May - and produced by Tony Iommi.
This, the first of the band's four albums - first appeared in 1977 on Jet Records, but has never been issued on CD.
1. Mainline Riders
2. Sugar Rain
3. Streetfighting Lady
5. Devil's Brew
7. Around And Around
8. Pleasure Seekers
9. Little Old Lady
Quartz were a leading NWOBHM band. Their lead guitarist, Mike Hopkins, was previously with John Bonham's Way Of Life and keyboardist, Geoff Nicholls joined Black Sabbath in 1979, whilst drummer, Malcolm Cope was involved in pre-production of Black Sabbath's 'Born Again' album. Quartz toured heavily, played The Reading Festival in 1976, 1977 and 1980 also supporting bands such a UFO, Iron Maiden, Saxon, Gillan and Rush.
The following is edited from Garry Sharpe-Young's acclaimed Black Sabbath biography 'Never Say Die':
Tony Iommi was at the time acting as producer, intending to play on the album himself. He invited Brian May, who was a friend, to the recording studio with the intention that Brian...
"add a splash of that famous hand made guitar on the track 'Circles', featuring a certain Mr. Ozzy Osbourne on backing vocals. 'Ozzy tried to put some harmonica on too' laughs Malcolm [Cope]. "Circles" inexplicably never made the album, only appearing as the B side to the subsequent 'Stoking The Fires Of Hell' single."
The re-release date, still to be confirmed, features many bonus tracks, including 'Circles', and Garry Sharpe-Young provides the liner notes. Check out Quartz biography and discography at Rockdetector.
Acknowledgement to Cozy Powell list / Cat Moves