Brian May ‘wasn’t comfortable’ with Don’t Stop Me Now – ‘too flippant’ amid AIDs crisis

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Lead guitarist of rock band Queen, Brian May, 73, has spoken out about their hit song Don’t Stop Me Now, 29 years after Freddie Mercury’s death from AIDs. The guitar player revealed that he thought the song “flippant” in light of the AIDs crisis, and didn’t agree with the message he thought it was sending to listeners.

I didn’t feel totally comfortable with what Freddie was singing at the time

Brian May

The rockstar admitted that he didn’t immediately like the song which was penned by the band’s lead singer.

He said: “I didn’t really take to it in the beginning.

“I didn’t feel totally comfortable with what Freddie was singing at the time.”

He went on: “I found it a little bit too flippant in view of the dangers of AIDs and stuff.”

However, he soon realised that the song was a source of happiness for many of the band’s fans.

Brian said to Guitar Player magazine: “But as time went on, I began to realise that it gave people great joy.

“I had to give in. It’s a great song – there’s no way around it.”

The first UK death from AIDs was in London in 1981, but by the end of the year, over 100 men had died as a result of the disease in America.

Jim Hutton, Freddie Mercury’s partner, later revealed that the star had been diagnosed with the disease in April 1987.

The rock legend kept his diagnosis a secret until he chose to break the news of his diagnosis publicly four years later, 24 hours before his death.

The statement read: “Following enormous conjecture in the press, I wish to confirm that I have been tested HIV positive and have AIDs.

“I felt it correct to keep this information private in order to protect the privacy of those around me.


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“However, the time has now come for my friends and fans around the world to know the truth, and I hope everyone will join with me, my doctors and all those worldwide in the fight against this terrible disease.”

Freddie died from a pneumonia-related complication from AIDs in November 1991.

However during his final days the star put all his energy into recording the band’s final album, Made In Heaven, which was released after his death.

Despite being a favourite today, Don’t Stop Me Now only ever reached number nine in the UK Chart in 1979 when it was released as a single.

It was previously released on their 1978 album Jazz.

Brian went on to acknowledge the popularity of the tune, citing it as “most requested song” at events as “it brings joy.”

He added: “I don’t have any quarrel with it now, I enjoy playing it onstage.”

The guitarist revealed that he appreciated that fans wanted to sing the motivational song.

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