Added on 10-Mar-2006
Concert Review: On March 9, 2006 Queen, led by Bad Company/Free lead vocalist Paul Rodgers, appeared in the fourth installment of their smashing new tour at the Verizon (formerly MCI) Center in Washington, DC. I was a few minutes late due to oversleeping and transportation difficulties; however, I only missed 'Intro: It's A Beautiful Day/Lose Yourself' and 'Reachin' Out '. I arrived just as 'Tie Your Mother Down' was approaching full rock and roll mode. Next up was crowd pleaser 'Fat Bottom Girls' and I am pleased to report that my seats in Section 100, Row N, Seat 17 were in the midst of 20+ girls, fat bottomed and otherwise, with a full row of college-aged girls right behind me. The occaisional grizzled rock veteran with kids in tow appeared sporadically throughout the crowd. The final three songs of this first section were 'I Want To Break Free', 'Take Love' and a major highlight 'Crazy Little Thing Called Love' where Paul Rodgers was introduced and really made his existence felt.
Of course, no one can replace Freddie Mercury; however, Paul Rodgers brought his own style of slightly grittier, more macho, rock showmanship to the stage and was a huge success, appearing to attract more attention than even Brian May or Roger Taylor at many points during the concert with his classic Bad Company and Free songs. Brian May took to the extension stage and sat down to play an acoustic set that included '39', 'Love of My Life' (dedicated to Freddie) and an electrifying version of 'Hammer To Fall'. Back to the main stage for the next major highlight of the night when Paul Rodgers did 'Feel Like Making Love' with some modern stylistic changes that drove the audience wild.
Next, Roger Taylor did the obligatory drum solo then 'I'm In Love With My Car' which led into an amazing guitar solo by Brian May that showed off his Hendrix/Clapton/Pink Floyd influences, ending on the beautiful and magnificient 'Last Horizon' (at which point Brian unceremoniousaly fell into the piano pit and was helped out by the roadies). A piano rose up through the floor with Paul Rodgers doing a superb version of 'Bad Company' followed by 'Another One Bites The Dust' and 'Dragon Attack'. Roger Taylor's highlight of the night came next with 'These Are The Days Of Our Lives' and a mediocre (I thought) 'Radio Ga Ga'.
The final bombastic section started with 'Can't Get Enough', 'The Show Must Go On' then a phenomenal photo collage of Freddie Mercury accompanied his own live version of 'Bohemian Rhapsody' along with Brian May and Roger Taylor, which Paul Rodgers then finished off brilliantly. The inevitibly awesome finale was composed of 'We Will Rock You', All Right Now' (an old Free song that is still a showstopper) and 'We Are the Champions'. The band took a bow as 'God Save the Queen' played. One of the best shows of the year for me.