By Brian Ives
The band made the announcement on Good Morning America earlier today (March 6) that Lambert would join them on their summer trek through North America.
This will be Queen’s first tour in six years. Surviving Queen members guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger Taylor previously toured from 2005 to 2008 with former Bad Company/Free frontman Paul Rodgers on vocals, and released one album as “Queen + Paul Rodgers,” The Cosmos Rocks, in 2008.
In 2009, Queen performed with Lambert on “American Idol,” leading to immediate rumors that he would be the band’s next frontman. In the summer of 2012, the band and Adam played six shows in Europe, and this past fall, they performed together in Las Vegas.
Last week, fans got excited over the prospect that Lambert would join the band in some capacity after the two acts announced that they would be revealing big news today (March 6) at New York City’s Madison Square Garden.
At the press conference, Lambert said that the European shows led to the idea of a North American tour. He noted that when he auditioned for “American Idol” he did so with a Queen song (“Bohemian Rhapsody”), so the opportunity to perform with the band was a “full circle” moment for him, and with this tour, “The circle is just got bigger. This is a big career highlight.”
May said of the new singer, “One of the great things about Adam is that he’s never an imitator. He finds his own way with the songs. That’s what we want: we want our songs to be alive and dangerous, and open to change. We wouldn’t be doing it if we didn’t think we were going into new territory.” However, he also said that there are no plans to record any new music with Lambert.
Taylor added, “We think Adam is a great diva. I mean that in the best sense. And our music, at times, calls for that kind of theatrical presentation. With his extraordinary range, he just adds to what we have.”
“It was great with Paul Rodgers,” May said of their last tour. “We took it way longer than we imagined at the beginning. And we’re still really good friends. It did come to a natural end, he needs to tend to his career. Contrary to what you may think, neither Roger nor I are desperate! It’s not like we’re always looking for someone to sing for us. Organically, this happened with Adam, and we wouldn’t be here if we didn’t feel it was right. People are going to say to us, ‘Is this really Queen, without Freddie?’ Well, I have no idea, I don’t know what the answer to that question is. But people want to hear Queen’s music, they want to hear it done great, and they want Roger and I to play it, and and we love to play. We’re still alive, we’re still healthy enough to go out there and tread those boards one more time.”
Of course, Freddie Mercury isn’t the only original member of Queen who won’t be on stage: bassist John Deacon, who is very much among the living, hasn’t been a part of Queen’s post-Freddie tours. “He just doesn’t want to,” May said. “We respect that. He wants his life to be private. He’s very much in approval that we do Queen stuff. He approves, and that’s all we need.”
The 19-date tour kicks off June 19 at the United Center in Chicago making stops along the way in New York, Los Angeles, Dallas and Las Vegas before finishing up in Washington, D.C. on July 20. Tickets go on sale Friday, March 14.
Check out the full list of tour dates below.
Queen with Adam Lambert North American Tour
6/19 – Chicago, IL @ United Center
6/21 – Winnipeg, Manitoba @ MTS Centre
6/23 – Saskatoon, Canada @ Credit Union Centre
6/24 – Edmonton, Alberta @ Rexall Place
6/26 – Calgary, Alberta @ Scotiabank Saddledome
6/28 – Vancouver, British Columbia @ Pepsi Live at Rogers Arena
7/1 – San Jose, CA @ SAP Center
7/3 – Los Angeles, LA @ The Forum
7/5 – Las Vegas, NV @ The Joint
7/6 – Las Vegas, NV @ The Joint
7/9 – Houston, TX @ Toyota Center
7/10 – Dallas, TX @ American Airlines Center
7/12 – Detroit, MI @ The Palace of Auburn Hills
7/13 – Toronto, Ontario @ Air Canada Centre
7/14 – Montreal, Quebec @ Bell Centre
7/16 – Philadelphia, PA @ Wells Fargo Center
7/17 – New York, NY @ Madison Square Garden
7/19 – Uncasville, CT @ Mohegan Sun Arena
7/20 – Washington, DC @ Merriweather Post Pavilion