Brian May says he regrets losing cassette Freddie Mercury made of Queen’s guitar solos

Brian May has revealed that late Queen frontman Freddie Mercury once made a cassette of all the band’s guitar solos.

Speaking to Total Guitar, the guitarist opened up about the tale and how he’s frustrated that he can’t track the tape down.

“One day Freddie had a big smile on his face when I came into the studio and he popped a cassette into the player and said, ‘Listen to this, darling. This is going to surprise you.’ And what he’d done was spend the whole morning putting together all the guitar solos that he could find in the work that we’d done, and he’d strung them all together,” May said.

“It was quite amazing. And one of my big regrets is I can’t find that cassette. I never throw anything away. I’m a bit of a hoarder. So it ought to be somewhere. But Freddie was very proud of the stuff that I’d done and that we’d done together.“

He also spoke about how the guitar solo for their classic hit ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ came into being.

May added: “Freddie put a guide vocal on, and then we started doing all the multi-tracked vocal harmonies. There was already a rhythm guitar on there, of course. And somewhere during that process we talked about where there would be a solo, and that part of it Freddie hadn’t mapped out.

“He said he wanted a solo in there, and I said I would like to effectively sing a verse on the guitar. I would like to take it somewhere else. I would inject a different melody. There was already a lot of colour in there, but I would like to have a free hand. And I could hear something in my head at that point – long before I went in there and played it.“

He continued: “I could hear this melody and I had no idea where it came from. That melody isn’t anywhere else in the song, but it’s a familiar chord sequence so it dovetails in quite nicely.”

Meanwhile, Queen drummer Roger Taylor recently quashed long-established rumours that George Michael turned down the chance to become the band’s new frontman after Freddie Mercury’s death.

The band are set to head out on their rescheduled UK tour in 2022.