The Weekend Concert Series: Queen Live at Wembley Stadium

Editor’s note: A movie biopic of the rockband Queen and its’ legendary lead singer, Freddie Mercury, opens in theaters today. We have not seen the film yet, but we have seen–and featured, some three years ago–their astonishing concert at Wembley Stadium. You may not get a chance to see the film, but you certainly must see the concert, and so we’re bringing it back from the Hunt for New Music vault. Enjoy. 
The Hunt for New Music. This last weekend of summer,the Hunt goes back in time, for one of the all-time great concerts: Queen Live at Wembley Stadium. The concert was recorded live at Wembley Stadium in London in July of 1986 when the English band was the absolute peak of their performance power. Queen, featuring Freddie Mercury, Brian May, John Deacon, and Roger Taylor, formed in 1970, had by then turned into one of the world’s greatest rock bands, posting 18 Number 1 albums. Lead by Freddie Mercury who was a consummate live performer–a shock of energy, mesmerizing, tantalizing, obviously dangerous, Queen became one of the world’s greatest–if not THE GREATEST–stadium bands. The band’s unique musical range set it far apart from their contemporaries as they constantly took massive musical risks and made them pay off. You may know them best for two songs identified (forever) with sports events: “We Will Rock You” and “We Are The Champions”, but until you have seem them live, you will never understand the power they brought to their music, concerts, and fans.  Like a lot of rock bands who achieved superstardom, there was a downside, and it was the dangerous dalliance with sex and drugs that form two parts of the three-part credo of “sex, drugs, and rock&roll” that brought the band, and, most notably, Freddie Mercury, down. Mercury, whose power on stage was unrivaled, was the living embodiment of the line from the Eagle’s song “James Dean”– “too fast to live, too young to die”– and, regrettably, it proved true.  Mercury died in 1991, from complications from AIDS-induced pneumonia; six years later, John Deacon retired and the song came to a close.  Although Roger Taylor and Brian May have continued to perform together, there is no Queen without Freddie Mercury (or John Deacon), just as there could be no Beatles without John Lennon. Presented this weekend, in full HD and wonderful sound, is Queen Live at Wembley, with the band in superb form in a concert that has been described, consistently, as the greatest live concert in the history of Rock. This is the perfect piece for an end of summer evening and, as always, you are advised to bump it to the big flat screen and run it through your sound system. And, of course,  turn it up. It’s a kind of magic.
 
 
The Fine Print: This concert was uploaded on dec 28, 2011. Embed courtesy of  youtube.com (thank you for sharing). It was featured on this site as part of our “Weekend Concert” series in 2015.  All rights belong to their respective artists. Introduction (c)2015, donald pierce.

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