Brian May – the ultimate interview: the Queen legend reflects on his career highs and lows, songwriting with Freddie Mercury and 50 years of trailblazing guitar playing

Brian May
(Image credit: Tom Hill/WireImage)

A new year brings another landmark in the life of one of the greatest guitar players of them all. “50 years,” Brian May says with a smile and brief pause as he takes it all in. “It really is amazing when you think about it.”

Half a century ago, the release of Queen’s debut album was the beginning of an extraordinary journey for Brian and the three other founding members of the group: drummer Roger Taylor, bassist John Deacon and singer Freddie Mercury. 

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month**

Join now for unlimited access

US pricing $3.99 per month or $39.00 per year

UK pricing £2.99 per month or £29.00 per year 

Europe pricing €3.49 per month or €34.00 per year

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Prices from £2.99/$3.99/€3.49

Chris Bird

Chris has been the Editor of Total Guitar magazine since 2020. Prior to that, he was at the helm of Total Guitar's world-class tab and tuition section for 12 years. He's a former guitar teacher with 35 years playing experience and he holds a degree in Philosophy & Popular Music. Chris has interviewed Brian May three times, Jimmy Page once, and Mark Knopfler zero times – something he desperately hopes to rectify as soon as possible.