MAY PRAISES LAMBERT Tuesday July 16 2019, 4:56 AM

QUEEN guitarist Brian May has praised Adam Lambert , saying that Freddie Mercury "would approve" of the singer "big time."

QUEEN + ADAM LAMBERT kicked off their "Rhapsody" North American tour Wednesday night (July 10) at the Rogers Arena in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. The group's show is billed as an evening with QUEEN — which consists of May (guitar, vocals), Roger Taylor (drums, vocals), Lambert (lead vocals), and touring musicians Spike Edney (keyboards / vocals), Neil Fairclough (bass), and Tyler Warren (percussion / drums / vocals), as well as video montages and vocals by the late great Mercury .

Before taking to the stage at San Jose's SAP Center last night (Sunday, July 14), May shared an Instagram photo of Lambert on stage and wrote in an accompanying message: "And here is the Modern Marvel without whom, for sure, QUEEN would not be out here delivering at the top level. Adam Lambert is only now beginning to be recognised by the greater public as the true phenomenon that he is. Gifted with a voice in a billion, for himself he is a passionate and unyielding perfectionist. Gifted to us, he is the reason that we are still alive as a functioning rock band. And still able to take on new challenges. Plus ... he's nice. That's a big deal when you're a touring family. Freddie would approve, big time."

He added: "Also, and I will say this only once, for the benefit of just a few people who haven't stopped to think clearly. Just imagine how awful it would have been for Roger and myself to tour with a Freddie impersonator. Anyone who suggests such a thing doesn't belong here. To the vast majority of you lovely people out there — BIG THANKS for being respectful to Adam . In supporting him, you are supporting the life blood of the live QUEEN legacy.

"Nothing is forever. This is a precious moment. We never pass this way again."

Since Lambert first shared the stage with QUEEN for the 2009 "American Idol" final, his dynamic performances have reinvigorated the band and delighted fans worldwide. Their first full show together — starting as they meant to go on — thrilled a half-a-million-strong crowd in the Ukraine capital city of Kiev in June 2012. Since then, May and Taylor 's musical fireworks have been matched by Lambert 's vocal prowess and stage presence, making for an explosive combination. Over 180 gigs later, the partnership has proven a commercial and critical triumph, playing to enraptured full houses in every corner of the world.

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