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Instruments: News Of The World Tour [11.11.1977 - 13.05.1978]

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Information > Instruments on tour > News Of The World
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Freddie seems to have bought two pianos in those months: one in New York (1st or 2nd December 1977), which he had shipped to his London flat and possibly never used on any Queen recording or concert, and a huge 8 ft 11.75 in Steinway that he acquired before or during the European leg (first documented instance of he playing it is at Bingley Hall in May 1978). As Leroy Brown was dropped from the set, there was no more ukelele-banjo. Roger trashed the drum kit on the last concert of the tour, as usual.

Roger's Ludwig drums Freddie's tambourine Roger's tambourine

Drum kit

Ludwig 26" x 14" bass-drum.
Ludwig 14" x 7.5" snare drum.
Ludwig 16" x 16", 18" x 18" and 20" x 20" floor toms.
Ludwig 15" x 15", 14" x 14", 13" x 13" and 12" x 12" rack toms.
Ludwig 10" x 10", 8" x 8" and 6" x 6" small toms.
Remo 16" and 14" rototoms [Get Down Make Love].
Paiste 8" splash cymbal.
Paiste 18" crash cymbal.
Paiste 22" china cymbal.
Zildjian 15" hi-hats.
Zildjian 20" and 2 x 18" crash cymbals.
Zildjian 22" ride cymbal.
3 x Cowbells.
Ludwig Speed-King pedal.
Ludwig stands.
Premier sticks.

Bass-drum logo: white crest / black background [USA/Canada]
Bass-drum logo: NOTW robot [Europe]

Gong [hit once at the end of Bohemian Rhapsody and during White Man and Ogre Battle]
Paiste 60" symphonic.
Bespoke beaters.
Paiste stands.


Triangle [Killer Queen]

Bass guitars

Electric bass guitars
Fender Precision 1968 [main]
Fender Precision 1965 [spare]
Fender Precision fretless [´39, Melancholy Blues]
Music Man Stingray [spare - rehearsals]

Bass rig
5 x Acoustic 371 amplifiers.
3 x Acoustic cabinets.
2 x Gauss 4" x 12" cabinets.
1 x Cornish (?) bespoke control.

John's Fender Precision John's fretless bass

Brian's Red Special Brian's Red Special replica

Electric six-string guitars
BHM bespoke [main]
Birch bespoke [spare, e.g. Liar in Houston]
Gibson Les Paul Deluxe [second spare]

Guitar rig
Cornish bespoke effect [trebe-booster]
Eventide harmoniser
fOXX foot pedal [phaser]
2 x Maestro tape-delay
9 x Vox AC30 amplifiers
Vox foot pedal [wah-wah]

Acoustic guitar ['39, Love of My Life]
Ovation Pacemaker 1615 twelve-string

Freddie's Steinway piano

Depending on the venue
e.g. Bösendorfer [Houston]
Steinway 1972 D concert [Europe]

What about the recording sessions?

John may have used his Music Man bass for several recordings on the album (in a 1979 interview he admitted having used it in the studio, and liking it although not as much as he liked the Fender's). Roger played a 1967 Fender Esquire on Sheer Heart Attack. John, according to the Fan Club magazine in late 1977, didn't use the fretless bass on the album. The piano Freddie played (and Brian in the case of All Dead, All Dead) was a Steinway at Island Studios in Notting Hill and a Bösendorfer at Wessex. John most likely played a Martin D-18 acoustic guitar on Spread Your Wings. While the album didn't include the 'no synths' claim, they still didn't use them.

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