Why Guns N' Roses Dropped Queen's Brian May From CD (No 10 B-Side Stories of 11)

12/30/2011
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Why Guns N' Roses Dropped Queen's Brian May From CD was the no 10 story in our countdown of the Top 11 B-Sides stories of 11. Here it is: (Gibson) Queen legend Brian May recorded a solo for a song on Guns N' Roses' Chinese Democracy album but fans were dismayed when the solo didn't make the album. It turns out that there was a very good reason for the omission. Gibson has the story:

In 1999, former Queen producer Roy Thomas Baker reached out to his old working partner, Brian May, to contribute to the long-awaited (and would wait for many more years thereafter) Guns N' Roses album, Chinese Democracy. May, who was friendly with Axl Rose since the band's performance at the Freddie Mercury tribute concert in 1992, happy accepted the invitation to play a solo on the track, "Catcher N' the Rye." May told Uncut magazine, "It was fun, to throw something in there to help out a friend."

According to Rose, though, May's solo was left off the record, mainly due to his own post-production work with co-producer Sean Beavan. "Brian's solo itself is a personal fave of mine and I really couldn't understand, as he's such a rock legend, why it wasn't openly appreciated more at the time. In actuality, all that feel and emotion referred to now had a lot to do with Sean and I and the parts I chose out of Brian's different runs, versions, practice runs, etc., to make sure we had those elements in one version. It's entirely constructed from edits based around one specific note Brian hit in a throwaway take. And though Brian seems to have warmed a bit to it, at least publicly, he was unfortunately none too pleased at the time with our handiwork. I remember looking at Brian standing to my left and him staring at the big studio speakers a bit aghast saying, 'But that's not what I played.' Sean Beavan and I were not in any way trying to mess with Brian, we just did what we do and then try and do our best to stand up for our decisions." more on this story

We are wrapping up the year by looking back at the top 11 stories of 2011 for various topics. See today's full Top 11 of 11 stories here

Gibson.com is an official news provider for antiMusic.com.
Copyright Gibson.com - Excerpted here with permission.

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