A KIND OF MAGIC?

The star can't wait for the shows - and new singer Paul Rodgers speaks out about standing in for Freddie Mercury...

QUEEN guitarist BRIAN MAY insists the prospect of the band playing their first shows in nearly 20 years is “more exciting than scary”.

The reformed rockers will start a tour on March 28, with former Free and Bad Company singer Paul Rodgers taking the place of Freddie Mercury, who died in 1991.

Queen And Paul Rodgers, as they are billed, will kick off with a preview show at London Brixton Academy before embarking on a massive arena tour of Europe.

The addition of Rodgers came about after he performed with guitarist May at the Fender Stratocaster 50th Anniversary show in London in September. As well as Queen classics, the supergroup will perform songs from Rodgers’ back catalogue like ‘All Right Now’ and ‘Can’t Get Enough Of Your Love’.

May told Uncut: “As the tour approaches, it feels like my whole body and soul have been tipped upside down. It’s now dawning on me that this huge ball is about to roll again. It’s slightly more exciting than scary though.”

Responding to criticism of the jaunt, May retorted: “Almost my entire life has been lived amid a hail of bullets. As far as I’m concerned, it’s nobody’s business but ours. If you think you’re gonna hate it, don’t come.”

Rodgers, meanwhile, insists he’s “not joining Queen” and is adamant he’s not Mercury’s replacement.

He added: “All we’re doing is following the feeling. Before we all agreed to do this, I’d have accepted that nobody could replace Freddie.

“I’m doing a tour with the guys and if that feels good we’ll take it from there.”

The dates are:

London Brixton Academy (March 28)

Paris Zenith (30)

Madrid Palacio De Deportes (1)

Barcelona Sant Jordi (2)

Rome Palalottomatica (4)

Milan Forum (5)

Firenze Mandela Forum (7)

Pesaro Palas (8)

Basel St Jakobshalle (10)

Vienna Stadthalle (13)

Munich Olympiahalle (14)

Prague Saska Arena (16)

Leipzig Arena (17)

Frankfurt Festhalle (19)

Antwerp Sports Palais (20)

Budapest Sportarena (23)

Dortmund Westfalenhalle (25)

Rotterdam Ahoy (26)

Hamburg Color Line Arena (28)

Stockholm The Globe (30)

Newcastle Arena (3)

Manchester MEN Arena (4)

Birmingham NEC (6)

Cardiff Arena (7)

Sheffield Arena (9)

London Wembley Arena (11)