With the Queen film "Bohemian Rhapsody" having earned Golden Globe nominations Thursday, and the latest Queen + Adam Lambert tour going on sale on Friday, many people have been sharing their stories about the iconic rock band. The latest is Larry Dvoskin, who wrote about his experience opening for Queen - and performing with their lead singer - in an editorial for Billboard this week.
Dvoskin is a music producer and songwriting professor at New York University. But back in the summer of 1986, he was a member of the band Zeno, which served as the opening act for Queen on their Magic Tour. It would be Queen's final tour with their complete lineup, as frontman Freddie Mercury died in 1991 and bassist John Deacon retired from music in 1997.
According to his column, he was one of the people invited to the now-infamous after party that Queen held following their second concert at Wembley Stadium on July 12, 1986. And at that party, Dvoskin says he was invited to play keyboards with a number of well-known artists. Though he admits "the events are a little fuzzy", the lineup was one to die for.
"Freddie sang, Roger Taylor of Queen [was] on drums, and I believe, the events are a little fuzzy, John Entwistle of The Who on bass, or was it Bill Wyman of The Rolling Stones on bass?" he told Billboard. "We did the corniest of cover tunes: "Knock on Wood” with Samantha Fox, a former topless model singing a duet with Freddie. The whole thing was uproarious."
It's the kind of experience any musician or music fan would love to have, and Dvoskin recognizes that in his article, talking about how surreal it was for him to go from a young man driving around New Jersey listening to Queen, to performing with the lead singer of Queen.
But while he has fun talking about the perks of opening for one of music's biggest bands, the most interesting part of his Billboard column is his recollection of how the band treated their fellow musicians.
He speaks of how, after Zeno's equipment didn't arrive for their first night on tour, Queen's roadies allowed the band to use some of their backup equipment. And then there's the first time he met Queen guitarist Brian May.
"He came up to me to apologize for not seeing Zeno's set," Dvoskin wrote. "But that showed me my first impression of the integrity and class surrounding the Queen family. It’s top-down management and Brian wanted me to know that every band opening for them, every musician sharing the stage was family, was important."
Dvoskin's article paints a vivid picture - not just of a musician getting to have a cool moment, but the reasons why Queen continues to be beloved to this day. The full article can be read here.
And while Mercury's absence is still felt in the music world, the surviving members of Queen announced this week that they're launching another North American tour in 2019. Information about the new Queen + Adam Lambert tour, fittingly called The Rhapsody Tour, can be found on the band's website.
For more on Queen, visit their artist page at AXS.