This flame that burns inside of me
I’m hearing secret harmonies
It’s a kind of magic
— Queen, A Kind of Magic
Queen is one of those arena rock bands from my childhood that I thought I’d never see perform live. I mean, after Freddie Mercury dies, how does a band carry on at all? Yet they have, finding a singer of Mercury’s caliber in Adam Lambert who can hit those extraordinary high notes with all the campy energy Freddie brought. Lambert brings it, but so does the band, driven by ageless wonders Brian May and Roger Taylor.
With this band, you know immediately that they’re doing work that they love with the talent to back it up. You don’t leave a Queen concert disappointed, you leave awe-inspired. Witnessing sustained mastery in the wild generally inspires awe. You leave wondering just how they do it. You leave wondering what more you can do with your own life’s work.
The thing is, it’s not simply the laser show and incredible graphics flashing on the screen. It’s not just the amazing talent on the stage. It’s not even the video of Freddie Mercury himself making a couple of appearances during the show. It’s the collective love of a multigenerational audience bringing love and vibrant participation to the party. And it’s a feeling that in this time of music legends passing away seemingly every day now, having the chance to be in the room with these guys playing at a high level is a special kind of magic.