Freddie Mercury’s first concert was ‘pure shock’ reveals Queen’s Roger Taylor (EXCLUSIVE)

It was 50 years ago this month that Farrokh Bulsara aka Freddie Mercury first performed with Brian May and Roger Taylor’s Smile. The band was renamed Queen at the singer’s suggestion after Tim Staffell left, just a few weeks later. Now, in an exclusive interview with Express.co.uk, the Queen drummer has revealed his first reaction to performing with Freddie.

The 70-year-old, who was promoting his new solo single Isolation, said: “I don’t remember the show very much, but I do remember performing that first show with Freddie.

“It was in Truro City Hall, down in Cornwall.

“It was for the Red Cross and I think it was organised by my mother.

“It’s an awful long time ago.”

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On what he thought of Freddie’s singing at that first concert, Taylor admitted: “Pure shock.”

“And he wasn’t as good then as he became, he became an awful lot better.

“He had quite an extraordinary voice and he just got better and better and better.”

The show took place on June 27, 1970 and saw Mike Grose on the bass, before John Deacon joined Queen in early 1971. While the band played their first gig known as Queen on July 18, 1970 at Prince Consort Road in London.

Asked of Queen’s 50th-anniversary plans, Taylor said: “That’s a good question actually.

“I think we do but I can’t quite remember what it is!

“What we are thinking about is releasing a live album.

“We had a big thing on YouTube the other night and it went down very well.”

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The Queen drummer continued: “So we thought, well, maybe there’s a live album of highlights of concerts that we’ve done over the last eight years with Adam Lambert.

“And I think it would make a very nice live album, so we’re really thinking about that actually.

“I expect there are all sorts of plans for the 50th anniversary.

“I can’t believe…50 years since we started the band, yeah just incredible.”

He added: “You think, ‘oh maybe we’ll be going in 18 months’ when you start, but you don’t think 50 years ahead, it’s just extraordinary.”

Queen’s early days were dramatised for Freddie Mercury biopic Bohemian Rhapsody a couple of years ago.

Rami Malek won the Best Actor Oscar for playing the singer, while the film won more Academy Awards than any other movie that year and made over $900 million at the box office.

Roger Taylor’s new solo single Isolation is out now.

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