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Instruments: Magic Tour [07.06.1986 - 09.08.1986]

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Instruments: Magic tour [07.06.1986 - 09.08.1986]

For this relatively short but very successful European tour, there were several changes in the equipment, reflecting updates in their keyboards due to more advanced technology. A lot of instruments were retired after this tour, including Freddie's piano, which was then restored by Steinway (the company) in 1994 and is now at Brian's flat in Surrey. His guitar (the blonde Telecaster) was apparently stolen from the warehouse at some point after Freddie's death.

John had his 1968 bass sprayed black for this tour. He was, reportedly, having some problems in his personal life, and his mood sometimes drove him to throw his bass in frustration, which prompted him to use the red back-up on several concerts including Leiden and the very last Queen concert (Knebworth Park, 9th August), on which he threw it again at the end of Radio Ga Ga but he didn't seem to cause any big damage to it as he still had it for the second encore. For this tour, both Under Pressure and Another One Bites the Dust were played on the same bass as the rest of the set, he didn't switch for those anymore.

Brian played synth for the first half of Who Wants to Live Forever. The last time he played the Crazy Little Thing Called Love solo on the Telecaster was in Spain, as for the next concert (Knebworth Park) he had problems with it and swiftly changed to the Red Special. After Freddie died, Brian would always play the solo on the guitar he made with his father, or a replica of it (the guitar, not his father), which possibly suggests that it'd been Freddie's decision that Brian used the Tele on stage... or not, maybe it's just coincidence.


Drum kit (Yamaha 9000 Power Recording Custom)
Yamaha 22" x 16" bass drum.
Yamaha 14" x 6.5" (Wembley) or 14" x 8" (Budapest) snare drum.
Yamaha 12" x 10", 13" x 11" and 14" x 12" rack toms.
Yamaha 16" x 16" and 18" x 16" floor toms.
Yamaha hardware.
Roland Pad-8 e-drum pads.
Zildjian 14" hi-hats.
Zildjian 17", 18" and 19" crash cymbals.
Zildjian 19" and 20" china cymbals.
Zildjian 20" ride cymbal.
Premier C sticks.

Logo: Queen on AKOM font on a black background.

Ludwig Musser

Roger's mics
snare: AKG C535EB
rack-toms: Sennheiser MD409 U3
floortoms: Sennheiser MD421 U2
overhead: AKG C451EB with a special "a51" tool (it's a knuckle joint from AKG)
hi-hat: AKG C451EB with the "CK6" mic capsule
bassdrum EV RE20 RE-SERIES
snare-bottom: Shure SM57 LC
vocals: Sennheiser MD431 Profipower

Roger's Yamaha kit in Budapest Roger's Yamaha kit at Wembley Roger's tambourine

Bass guitars
Fender Precision '68 Fender Elite 1 All John's basses

Bass guitars
Fender Precision 1968 [most tour]
Fender Precision Elite [selected dates]
Fender Precision 1981 [spare]
Music Man Stingray [spare]

Red Special Guild replica Ovation Telecasters Gibson acoustic Spike's Gordon Smith

Electric guitars
BHM bespoke [main]
Fender Telecaster 1978 [Crazy Little Thing - Brian]
Fender Telecaster 1983 [Crazy Little Thing - Freddie]
Gibson Chet Atkins CE [selected songs in the middle]
Gibson Les Paul Junior [Hammer to Fall - Spike]
Guild BHM replica [spare]

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

Freddie's Steinway Yamaha DX-7 E-MU Emulator II Roland Jupiter 8 Roland VP-330 All keyboards from top

Acoustic piano
Steinway D 8 ft 11.75 in. [1972 model]

E-MU Emulator II+
Roland Jupiter 8
Roland VP-330
2 x Yamaha DX-7

What about the recording sessions?

Equipment used on the Magic album largely differed from what was played on stage. On the record, drums were Ludwig, additional synths were used (Fairlight CMI-III and Kurzweil K-250) and a Yamaha C-7B piano was used in Munich (e.g. Friends Will Be Friends). Linn LM-2 drum machines were also used, sometimes even completely replacing Roger (e.g. One Year of Love). John used his 1981 Telecaster on some songs of the album too (Brian still played the lead guitar, of course, but John did the rhythm). Spike Edney contributed to some of the keyboards.

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