|City:||New York, NY, USA|
|Date:||May 11, 1974|
These shots of Sam Goody and the Uris Theatre in NYC around this time are from Super 8 footage shot by Mott The Hoople keyboardist Morgan Fisher (who would later play with Queen in 1982).
This is the sixth and final concert at the Uris Theatre, and the last time they would open for Mott The Hoople. During the encore of Mott's set, Queen joined them to provide backing vocals on All The Young Dudes.
Shortly thereafter, Brian May collapsed from pain. It turns out he had developed hepatitis from a tainted needle he received when the band got their required inoculations before going to Australia in February, and he had been in considerable pain throughout this tour. It soon developed into gangrene, and at one point there was a chance that his arm would have to be amputated. The band were forced to abandon the rest of the shows on the tour. Here's a newspaper article on the subject.
Many years later, Roger Taylor recalled the day: "Poor Brian was yellow, bright yellow, and I was amazed we managed to shepherd him through the immigration queue at JFK in New York. The poor fellow could hardly stand and we got him on the plane, got him home, and got him to hospital. He was very ill. We were devestated. The tour had been cut short, you know, cos it was our first trip to America, so there were mixed feelings about that, but also very worried about Brian on the other hand."
Here's the full list of shows with Mott The Hoople that were cancelled (including a couple Canadian dates):
1974.05.13 - Boston, MA, Orpheum Theatre (rescheduled from April 26)
1974.05.15 - Washington, D.C., DAR Constitution Hall
1974.05.16 - Charleston, SC, Municipal Auditorium
1974.05.17 - Atlanta, GA, Fox Theatre
1974.05.18 - Knoxville, TN, Coliseum
1974.05.20 - Detroit, MI, Masonic Temple
1974.05.21 - Chicago, IL, Auditorium Theatre
1974.05.22 - Milwaukee, WI, Auditorium
1974.05.23 - South Bend, IN, Morris Civic Auditorium
1974.05.24 - Toledo, OH, Sports Arena
1974.05.25 - Cleveland, OH, Allen Theatre (7pm and 10:30 shows)
1974.05.26 - Columbus, OH, Mershon Auditorium
1974.05.27 - Toronto, ON, Massey Hall
1974.05.28 - London, ON, London Arena
1974.05.30 - Pittsburgh, PA, Syria Mosque
1974.05.31 - Philadelphia, PA, Schubert Theatre
1974.06.01 - Philadelphia, PA, Schubert Theatre
1974.06.02 - Richmond, VA, The Mosque
The US prog rock band Kansas replaced Queen in the opening slot. At the show in Detroit on May 20 (just prior to the release of the first Kansas album), there was no announcement that a different band was opening up for Mott The Hoople. A fair portion of the crowd was there for Queen, so Kansas ended up playing to constant boos and shouts for Queen. After a song or two, one of the members of Kansas grabbed the mic to shout, "Queen's not here, so shut the fuck up and listen."
Furthermore, a double bill with Blue Oyster Cult at the Santa Monica Auditorium had even been booked for June 7. Nazareth filled in for Queen.
A proposed Queen tour of North America for September would also be postponed until the new year.
While recovering in hospital, Brian would write a few songs while the band worked in the studio on their next record. During this time, Brian was approached by the band Sparks to join them, which he declined. He was committed to Queen, although worried that they might let him go. Of course the thought didn't even cross their mind, as Brian was such a key element of their unique sound. After he regained his health he would join them to finish their third album, Sheer Heart Attack.