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February 2024 - Let Us Entertain You: Killer Queen


Killer Queen's Patrick Myers as frontman Freddie Mercury.
Killer Queen's Patrick Myers as frontman Freddie Mercury.

Patrick Myers could have never imagined that he would be the lead singer of one the biggest, most beloved Queen tribute band. He does not take the position for granted. Myers, a fan of the band and its lead frontman, Freddie Mercury, has gotten to experience what it's like on stage, and the attraction to become him was just because of the man himself. "I was just knocked out by Freddie initially just by his voice. I had no idea he was such an amazing performer," shared Myers. "I listened to them before I saw them. I'd seen some videos, but even from the videos, you still got to see him on stage to see what he does and just how amazing he is. Things like Live Aid brought that home to me. So I was just in awe of him. I thought he was just fantastic. He was like an Olympian God to me as a kid. He remains that way now. As you grow up, you can see his vulnerabilities and his insecurities. He created this image that was this thing called Freddie Mercury. It was entirely self-generated. Underneath it, he was a Farooq Borsara. So it was a construct. It's interesting, the duality of that, the man behind it - the legend, you know. So yeah, he remains supremely talented in his field as a performer, a songwriter, and a visual artist. His visual eye for videos and all sorts of things was just great. So how can you not be attracted to that amount of talent."


So how does one become Killer Queen? For Myers and the boys, it was a realization that they would never have the opportunity to see Queen live on stage. "We were students at London University, the same University Queen ruled out when they met. We're in this - big halls of residence, and we just got to know each other about, you know, through our music. The first thing you ask someone is, "Oh, great. So what are you studying?" And the second question is, what bands are you into - what are your musical influences? The common denominator for our generation was that they love "Queen." They were sort of beyond whether they were cool or not. They were just fantastic. They were just great musicians. And they just released back in 1991, one of their best albums in years, groundbreaking, but also sort of like retreading some of their old styles, called Innuendo. Queen was riding high. And we're all getting to know each other and exploring other musical influences. And then we got the news that Freddie was ill and then Freddie had died. So we all went into within a few weeks of leaving home to go to university. So we went into this weird state of feeling totally bereft and sort of scared and horrified that could have happened to Freddie."


Killer Queen at Red Rocks - Simon Small on guitar, Brad Waissman on bass and drummer John Howells, with Patrick Myers on vocals
Killer Queen at Red Rocks - Simon Small on guitar, Brad Waissman on bass and drummer John Howells, with Patrick Myers on vocals.

The mourning of their favorite band led to something more - a unification of a common thread. "We just felt in limbo. So we started singing the songs to each other. Everyone had their favorite Queen song. So everyone would play their favorite," said Myers. "Then we saw the beginnings of the tribute scene. I thought, well, because we just missed out on seeing Queen, we'll do a concert ourselves. I studied acting and drama and had friends who were into costume design. So we all clubbed together and decided to make a nice tribute concert to Queen."


That decision has made Killer Queen the most well-known tribute band to one of the greatest bands in history. It's allowed them to perform in some of the same arenas Queen played back in the day, like Ahoy in Rotterdam and then Forest National, and in the United States at legendary venues like Red Rocks in Colorado and Austin City Limits. "I think a lot of our success is due to people like what we do. The second part of the success is we were the first to do it. So we got a lot of attention early on," explains Myers. "But the key part of the success mixed with those other two things is that the songs we're doing and the people we're emulating, so it's not just Freddie, it's Brian, Roger, and John too. We all dress up. The songs are so good, and the characters we portray on stage are loved. That's one of the reasons why we've done well. And why so many tributes are out there. They all achieve different degrees of success, but I think the key to everyone's success is just how good the music is, and we'll never forget."


Killer Queen's Patrick Myers as Freddie Mercury and Simon Small as Brian May.
Killer Queen's Patrick Myers as Freddie Mercury and Simon Small as Brian May.

New Mexicans can witness the magic for themselves on March 8th. Myers hopes the audience feels the love and unity the band brings with every song they sing. "We want them to feel a whole sort of like rainbow-color of emotions," says Myers. "From high excitement to sometimes a degree of blissful tears. We give a shoutout and salute to Freddie and let the audience say how much they love and miss him. As well as just fun! Just rock and roll fun - putting your hands in there and shouting, "We Will Rock You," and swaying from side to side singing, "We Are the Champions." Jumping up and down like Wayne's World, headbanging to the rock-out section of Bohemian Rhapsody. Straightforward Rock fun, as well as high degrees of other emotions too. It's a real testament to the emotional diversity of Queen's songs. I think it's an extraordinary and unique body of work. How it must be Brian May and Roger, and look over this extraordinary legacy and say, "Wow, we did that." That's the great thing about our shows as well. We reach a wide age range. We get kids here from 7-10. For some kids, it's their first gig, and they're three or four with ear defenders on, jumping up and down with their parents and jumping up and down with their parents. You get four generations of people coming to see Queen! I love whole families in the audience. It always makes me smile."


Killer Queen performs at Revel Entertainment Center on March 8th. For more information, visit revelabq.com.

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