|City:||Washington, D.C., USA|
|Venue:||John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts|
|Date:||February 24, 1975|
Procession, Now I'm Here, Ogre Battle, Father To Son, White Queen, Flick Of The Wrist, In The Lap Of The Gods, Killer Queen, The March Of The Black Queen, Bring Back That Leroy Brown, Son And Daughter, Keep Yourself Alive, Stone Cold Crazy, Liar, In The Lap Of The Gods...Revisited, Big Spender, Modern Times Rock 'n' Roll, Jailhouse Rock, God Save The Queen
Queen almost missed this concert at the Kennedy Center, a venue usually used for classical music and opera.
Freddie's voice had been giving him problems at some shows on this tour, particularly on the previous night in Philadelphia, which led him to see a throat specialist in Philadelphia the next morning, only to be diagnosed with throat nodules. It was strongly recommended he refrained from singing or even speaking for three months. However, the rest of the band were already on their way to D.C. for their next show, and Freddie did not want to disappoint fans by cancelling a show on such short notice.
Needing to rush to Washington for the show, Freddie and a couple aides (Dave Thomas and Jack Nelson of Trident Audio Productions, with whom Queen were still signed at this point) boarded a train which only made it to Baltimore, as there was a derailed train on the tracks. Every taxi cab and hire car was booked, so they were forced to wait for the next train, which departed around 5pm (Queen were due on stage at 8pm). Freddie missed soundcheck and the band went on stage only slightly later than scheduled, delivering what was a superb show from the entire band.
There are a couple interesting tech issues early on - there's some feedback off the top of Now I'm Here that the front of house tech soon sorts out, and the guitar sample from that song is briefly heard again in the intro to Ogre Battle but quickly shut off.
Mercury absolutely kills it, and the band and backing vocals are spotless. There's all kinds of great guitar work from Brian, from the soaring sustained notes in the White Queen solo to the nifty licks in Keep Yourself Alive and Jailhouse Rock. Great whammy bar effects in the "mama I'm gonna be your slave" section of Liar too.
Freddie's dynamics in second verse of In The Lap Of The Gods...Revisited are second to none. Even on a night like this, for him phone it in was inconceivable.
Here is a minimally revealing review of the show from the next day's Washington Post.
The first couple photos were submitted by Jeffrey Lee, and the second row was taken by Tommy Keene.
The day after the gig Freddie got a second opinion from another specialist who concluded his throat was not suffering from nodules, but from swelling. It was suggested he take a couple weeks off. A third diagnosis (from a specialist who had previously treated Tom Jones and Barbara Streisand) also insisted it was merely a case of swelling, but it was, in fact, the original diagnosis that was ultimately correct. The band would take a week off to allow Freddie to rest.
1975.02.25 - Pittsburgh, PA, Stanley Theater
1975.02.26 - Kutztown, PA, Keystone Hall
1975.02.27 - Buffalo, NY, Kleinhans Music Hall
1975.02.28 - Toronto, ON, Massey Hall
1975.03.01 - Kitchener, ON, Kitchener Memorial Hall
1975.03.02 - London, ON, London Arena
1975.03.04 - Davenport, IA, Orpheum
Three US and three Canadian dates would be cancelled (hard luck for the people of Toronto and London, Ontario, as their shows were cancelled in 1974 as well), and the tour would resume on March 5 in La Crosse, Wisconsin.
From this point onward, tours would be scheduled with days off between shows as needed so Freddie could rest his voice. The nodule problem would recur over the years, but Freddie refused to undergo any surgery as he feared it would alter his voice irreversibly.
|Recording length:||76 minutes (incomplete)|
|Lineage:||TDK SA 90 Cassette > JVC KD-V6 > TASCAM CD-RW900mkII > CDR > EAC > WAV > Adobe Audition (conversion to dual mono, files appended) > iZotope RX (de-clip, de-crackle) > Audacity (tracking and speed-correction) > FLAC (level 8)|
Procession [cut], Now I'm Here, Ogre Battle, Father To Son [cut], White Queen, Flick Of The Wrist, In The Lap Of The Gods [cut], Killer Queen [cut], The March Of The Black Queen, Bring Back That Leroy Brown, Son And Daughter, Keep Yourself Alive, Stone Cold Crazy, Liar, In The Lap Of The Gods...Revisited, Big Spender, Modern Times Rock 'n' Roll, Jailhouse Rock
This recording emerged in 2022. Apart from a few tiny cuts it's complete. There's a bit of distortion, but the instrument separation is excellent, which is credit to both their sound tech and the theatre's acoustics. It's listenable enough to know this is one of the greatest gigs they ever played.