Classic Hits & Oldies

‘Queen The Greatest Live’ episode five delves into the art of the opening number

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Queen Production Ltd.

Queen is giving fans yet another peek behind the scenes with the latest episode of their weekly YouTube series Queen The Greatest Live. This week they explore the decisions that go into picking opening numbers for a show.

“The audience want to be blown away at first,” Roger Taylor shares in the clip. “We used to say blind them, deafen them, and then calm down a bit after 20 minutes. You really want to go bang, bang, bang, bang at the beginning of a show.”

Brian May adds that some songs are simply made to be openers. “Sometimes, writing a song, you’re already aware it would be a good opener,” he says. “You see it in that light. The production starts to take place in your head. We’ve had some really good openers and I think generally they’ve come out of the music.”

The episode looks at classic Queen openers like “We Will Rock You” and even “Tie Your Mother Down” during the period they toured with Paul Rodgers. May also talks about how they learned what goes into building anticipation in a show from artists like The Who and Led Zeppelin

The band also discusses why they rarely take openers with them when they tour. “Basically, we have a lot to offer on a given night and we like to use the whole evening,” May says. “So we like to do the whole show ourselves. It’s like we kind of do the warm-up ourselves.”

He adds, “In some ways it’s a shame because it’s nice to take a support group out because it gives them a leg up and it gives them a good chance to be seen.”

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