Forums > Queen - Serious Discussion > Audience Participation in the US

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QueenZeppelin user not visiting Queenzone.com

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Posted: 06 May 08, 09:41 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Okay, I've always wondered this, as the only US performance of Queen I've seen is the 1977 Houston bootleg on YouTube.

What was audience participation like at shows Queen did in the US?

Everyone, I know, sang along to We Will Rock You and We Are the Champions. But what about Love of My Life? Or '39? How were those lesser known tracks greeted, and how were the audiences overall? Were they as anemic as the Montreal crowd was in 1981 (I'm guessing not).

Follow-up: for those of you that went (or saw bootlegs), how was participation in the US during the Queen + Paul Rodgers tour?


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Posted: 06 May 08, 12:33 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

QueenZeppelin wrote:

Follow-up: for those of you that went (or saw bootlegs), how was participation in the US during the Queen + Paul Rodgers tour?


Crappy, except for Detroit, based on the 6 shows I went to. :-S

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Posted: 06 May 08, 13:14 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Erin wrote:

QueenZeppelin wrote:

Follow-up: for those of you that went (or saw bootlegs), how was participation in the US during the Queen + Paul Rodgers tour?


Crappy, except for Detroit, based on the 6 shows I went to. :-S


There were varying levels of crappiness though, Jacksonville being the worst.

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Posted: 06 May 08, 13:46 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Actually, it was kind of nice hearing Paul, Brian, and Roger sing...

...instead of the guy next to me wearing the Night At The Opera T-Shirt.

I hate that guy.

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Posted: 06 May 08, 14:02 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

In fairness to Jacksonville (my home town, by the way), it's not exactly a "Queen" city. I was honestly surprised when I saw it on the list of tour stops--most of the bands that play there fall into the genres of country, southern rock, or washed-out pop acts. When that KISS tribute band (you know, the one with Thayer and Singer) stopped in Jacksonville during a co-headlining tour with Aerosmith, it was the biggest show that city had seen in a long, long time.

A moderately-sized group (mostly up near the catwalk) at the Phoenix show knew the words to LOML and sang the first verse, with Brian remaining silent and letting them take it. The final line of BoRhap, of course, was sung loudly by everyone throughout the arena. Hell, the entire song was--the only song throughout the entire show that everyone knew the words to and was willing to sing. I think it says a lot about American audiences, though, that the band had to play the studio tape of "We Will Rock You" to get the hint across that the audience is supposed to sing the title line.

American audiences, in general, are less apt to jump up and down, dance, and sing along. For whatever reason, we prefer to sit in our comfy, padded chairs and stand up to clap at the end of the show. My wife (then girlfriend) and I were yelled at by a patron behind us at the Phoenix show because we refused to sit down.

Ok, maybe it's because I was a dick and asked him, "Well why don't you guys stand up?", but that's beside the point.

I'm curious--was the participation at any US tour shows (or any shows in general, for that matter) so bad that Paul actually didn't let the audience sing "Nothing really matters to me" before taking it himself? I was genuinely afraid that the band wouldn't give the line away to American audiences, mostly because Freddie never did (on any US bootleg I've ever heard), and partly because we aren't know for singing along.


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Posted: 06 May 08, 14:14 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

The non-audience versions of LOML (i.e. NOTW tour versions) are the better ones anyway.

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Posted: 06 May 08, 14:49 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

i attended the 1980 concert in ames, iowa and the audience particiapation there varied from song to song. with ames being a college town it is very diverse. love of my life was accepted but did not have a strong showing (much like the version in 'we will rock you' dvd) which was very upsetting.

in 1982 when i had seen them again in st. paul, minnesota it was nearly the same with the exception that most of the audience like the 'older songs' as compared to the hot space versions they played.

in 2006 i again seen queen + pr in st. paul again and the audience only responded to the 'radio played favorites' that was quite nice, but love of my life was not totally a failure.

all in all i would have to say that the audience participation in the three concerts i had attended was well under that of what i have watched on dvd or youtube from around the world.



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Posted: 06 May 08, 15:12 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I was at a show in Massachusetts a few years back that had pretty good crowd participation. Queen has always been big in the northeast.


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Posted: 06 May 08, 17:29 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Wolfmother wrote:

I was at a show in Massachusetts a few years back that had pretty good crowd participation. Queen has always been big in the northeast.


Yes, they are. Here in New Hampshire I've heard a ton of songs they usually wouldn't play on the radio due to not even charting on the top 200!


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Posted: 07 May 08, 03:23 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I went to the show in San Jose a couple of years ago and there was a lot of crowd participation at that one. The crowd was loud and enthusiastic. I heard lots of singing around me and LOML promoted a loud singing response from the audience.

Not sure whether being drunk suddenly makes people remember lyrics they never knew in the first place but every song (plus Brian's walk to the front of the catwalk to play LOML) drew rapturous applause.

As a side note, I loved the way they through in Alright Now toward the end of the show - talk about a rousing finale! It just launched everyone to become even more wildly into WATC and WWRY. I can safely say everyone left on a high.

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Posted: 07 May 08, 04:26 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

When I saw them in 2006 at Nassau Coliseum I was VERY disappointed when they played Radio Ga Ga and most of the auditorium didn't seem to know they should be hand-clapping.
Never mind, my Girlfriend and I should them Yanks how it should be done and very soon they were all at it.... :)



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Posted: 08 May 08, 20:00 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

At the Hollywood Bowl show in 2005, at the beginning of Radio Ga-Ga nobody seemed to be doing the hand clapping, but everyone caught on by the end.

Hell, a bunch of people around me left after they played Bo Rhap.

In San Diego 2006, all I can remember is screaming Dragon Attack and Under Pressure at the top of my lungs.

had a sore throat after that one

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Posted: 09 May 08, 09:05 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

QueenZeppelin wrote:

Okay, I've always wondered this, as the only US performance of Queen I've seen is the 1977 Houston bootleg on YouTube.

What was audience participation like at shows Queen did in the US?


Don't forget that the Houston Soundtrack is a video feed, where the audience is very low in the mix!

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Posted: 09 May 08, 14:09 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

pootle1 wrote:When I saw them in 2006 at Nassau Coliseum I was VERY disappointed when they played Radio Ga Ga and most of the auditorium didn't seem to know they should be hand-clapping.
Never mind, my Girlfriend and I should them Yanks how it should be done and very soon they were all at it.... :)

******
oh, puhleeze....

we were 10th row on the floor in Jersey, and all those around us, as well as looking up into the cheap seats, were doing the 'Ga Ga'...I think people had the idea.

At the DC show, sitting in the cheap seats, we could see all those on the floor in the good seats and cheap seats 'doing it'.

we're not daff over here, ya know


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Posted: 09 May 08, 20:12 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

American's don't like to sing outloud as much as the Brits, and thank goodness I say.

I can't fucking stand hearing some drunk-ass out of tune voice next to my ear drowning out the music. Nothing makes me angrier at a show. I want to hear the subtle nuances of the singer's voice as he does his thing.
Not some fool who would get booed at a karaoke bar.

I've never understood the appeal of singing over the tune. I suppose it's not nearly as bad as the stupid bitch yelling over the loud music to her dumb friend about the guy she met in the parking lot and yada-yada-yada. They only stop talking long enough to scream out the chorus of the one song they know by the band.
God, I hate people like that.

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Posted: 10 May 08, 12:54 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I personally like to sit there, sometimes I'll sing along, but mostly I just like to watch and listen and take in the whole show. I often go to shows by myself (and I've been to hundreds) because I'm so dull, but I enjoy every minute of it, just in my own relaxed way.

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Posted: 13 May 08, 10:38 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

goodco wrote:

At the DC show, sitting in the cheap seats, we could see all those on the floor in the good seats and cheap seats 'doing it'.

we're not daff over here, ya know



I'm surprised you were able to hear anything after being blasted by the speakers at the Hard Rock Cafe before the gig! ; )

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Posted: 15 May 08, 05:00 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Knute wrote:

American's don't like to sing outloud as much as the Brits, and thank goodness I say.

I can't fucking stand hearing some drunk-ass out of tune voice next to my ear drowning out the music. Nothing makes me angrier at a show. I want to hear the subtle nuances of the singer's voice as he does his thing.
Not some fool who would get booed at a karaoke bar.

I've never understood the appeal of singing over the tune. I suppose it's not nearly as bad as the stupid bitch yelling over the loud music to her dumb friend about the guy she met in the parking lot and yada-yada-yada. They only stop talking long enough to scream out the chorus of the one song they know by the band.
God, I hate people like that.


Ok - people shouting random stuff over the music and not paying any attention is one thing, but as for singing along, maybe with certain bands, and certain songs I agree, but the anthemic nature of quite a few of Queen's, and also Paul's tracks is clearly perfect for audience participation. The band are aware and encourage this!

Audience participation is a good thing with songs of that kind. Maybe less so if its one guy singing along to something less anthemic, but if you cant hear the band over the person standing next to you, it needs turning up!

My concern would be that next people will be saying "I dont like people who jump up and down, rock out, and clap their hands during songs - it ruins my ability to sit perfectly still, in silence, and become one with the music" - I mean come on - participating in the experience is what live music is all about!
If you want to be passive to the musical experience - get a live DVD, or just listen to the albums!


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Posted: 19 May 08, 11:17 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I had to make a new account to post this...anyway....I have no clue what other people were doing during the concert but I know what I was doing!!!! Having a kick ass time!!!!!!


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Posted: 19 May 08, 14:35 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Buying a ticket is the most powerful way an audience can participate. They've done their part then, and it's up to the band to entertain them.