I'll remember the 2008 concert at the Birmingham NIA forever. It was simply the best night of my life! Back in march(ish) I'd heard that queen+paul were going to tour again, and so proceeded to beg my dad for tickets, to which he answered "we'll see". Then a few days later, he asked me to check his emails for him on the computer. There was an email from the ticket factory, which he asked me to open. It was order confirmation for the tickets!! I was over the moon, and was just hoping the next months would fly by, which they did!
On the day of the gig i actually had a cold, which dampened the mood slightly, but i was still bouncing around school i was that excited! When i got home, i ate dinner and got ready, a few hours too fast - we had seating tickets. When me, my parents, and my two brothers got in the car, i literally couldn't believe what was happening. When we arrived at the arena and there were so many queen fans, it blew my mind! Even my dad, who isn't much of a queen fan, was beaming, and at one point me and another young queen fan (a girl ;D) looked at each other and we must have been feeling the same thing, pure excitement and wonder! It's a shame i didn't pluck up the courage to go and talk to her!
Then came the moment when we went up the steps into the actual hall. The moment i saw the stage for the first time was incredible, i was thinking "bloody hell that's roger's kit! And brian's amps!!!!!!!!!" I got a glimpse of pete malandrone carrying one of brian's guitars back, we were on brian's side of the stage fairly close. The lights went down. Can't describe in words that feeling, its the same at any concert, but at queen it was just even better! The fact that i had a cold was way in the back of my mind, as the cosmos rocks intro came on (I remember it being very loud!) The surf's up schools out section came on to ecstatic cheers from everyone, even my mom! Then, the band came on stage. Anyone who has experienced that moment knows what i mean when i say how incredible it was!!
First guitar solo of the night - hammer to fall. i still remember the cheer that went up, and my amazement, that killer tone was there, in front of my eyes, completely live. I hadn't seen a concert for about 7 years (when i was about 7) and i was now 14, so to me it felt like my first concert. And my life what a concert!!
When Brian was doing his guitar noodling just before Fat Bottomed Girls, i looked at my mom and said "Mom, he's actually there!" It was something i just couldn't get my head around! Then brian broke a string on FBGs! I was thinking "whats he gonna do to get out of that!?" He managed, just with some improv that managed to fit the song somehow, he really is a genius.
Instead of describing every second to you, i'll put the highlights of the show for you!
-Hammer to Fall - not particularly good starter in hindsight, but overshadowed by seeing them for the first time!
-Tie your mother down - one of my favourite songs of all time!
-I Want It All - the solo is incredible, and the way they went into it was quite cool i thought.
- Love of My life - simply amazing, i loved that moment.
-'39 - the "ancient midlands folk song" as brian called it
- Bass/drum solo - cool how they built it up around rog.
- A kind of magic - brian's solo was on fire!!
- Say its not true - my favourite song of the album at the time
- Guitar solo/bijou/last horizon - brian's my favourite guitarist so these were obviously highlights, particularly the part where brian goes to the end of the b-stage in LH, and does the really high bit.
- Crazy little thing called love - the intro with the drums was really cool then jamie played the opening chords, unexpected.
- Bohemian rhapsody - doesn't need an explanation, the best 5 minutes of my life. No question.
- Cosmos rockin' - really cool , the old people behind us were dancing around!
In fact, every single song was a highlight! simply amazing night. Blasting the Cosmos Rocks album in the car on the way home was cool, but for some reason i felt slightly weird, probably because i didn't think i'd ever see a better concert, which in truth, i probably won't.
I was working on the Queen and Paul Rogders Cosmos tour as a truck driver and in my line of work I come across a lot of famous people but this was the first time I was star struck.
In catering one day I asked him possibly the most stupid question I have ever asked anyone: "Are you a gifted guitarist or did you have lessons?" Fair play to him he smiled and told me his dad bought him a ukulele when he was 7 and it went from there.
A footnote is on this tour for some reasons there was a lot of birthdays and Roger always joined in with the happy birthday's.