Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Queen guitarist Brian May streams NASA-inspired solo single

Queen guitarist Brian May is streaming a video for “New Horizons”, in sync with the NASA mission of the same name as it made history on New Year’s Day 2019.

The tune – which marks May’s first solo single in 20 years – is the rocker’s personal tribute to the on-going NASA New Horizons mission, which achieved the most distant spacecraft flyby in history on January 1 in an encounter with a remote Kuiper Belt Object (KBO) named Ultima Thule, far out beyond Pluto on the edges of the solar system.

May, who has a doctorate in astrophysics, and is a New Horizons science collaborator, was present at the New Horizons Maryland, Washington County, base of operations on New Year’s Day to witness the historic final approach as it happened; he was also present for New Horizon’s triumphal Pluto flyby in 2015, and delivered the world’s first stereoscopic image of Pluto, from the ground-breaking data that the NH probe delivered.

Brian’s “New Horizons” track (Ultima Thule mix) celebrates the whole 12-year Journey of New Horizons probe and includes a message from Stephen Hawking congratulating the team on their successful rendezvous with Pluto three years ago. In a broader sense, the song is an anthem to Mankind’s spirit of exploration, reaching ever further out into the Universe.

“This project has energized me in a new way,” says May. “For me, it’s been an exciting challenge to bring two sides of my life together - Astronomy and Music. It was Alan Stern, the Project Instigator of this amazing NASA Mission, who threw down the glove last May. He asked if I could come up with a theme for Ultima Thule which could be played as the NH probe reached this new destination.

“I was inspired by the idea that this is the furthest that the Hand of Man has ever reached – it will be by far the most distant object we have ever seen at close quarters, through the images which the spacecraft will beam back to Earth. To me, it epitomizes the human spirit’s unceasing desire to understand the Universe we inhabit. Everyone who has devoted so much energy to this mission since its launch in January 2006 will be feeling they are actually INSIDE that small but intrepid vehicle - only about the size of a grand piano - as it pulls off another spectacular close encounter. And through the vehicle’s ‘eyes’ we will begin to learn, for the very first time, what a Kuiper Belt Object is made of. And pick up precious clues about how our solar system was born.”

May’s “New Horizons” had its worldwide premiere from NASA control headquarters Maryland USA on New Year’s Day in sync with the moment when the historic Ultima Thule encounter was confirmed.

Inspired by the worldwide success of the “Bohemian Rhapsody” biopic, Queen have announced dates for a summer 2019 Rhapsody tour of North America with Adam Lambert.

The six-week, 23-date series of arena and stadium shows – which will begin in Vancouver, BC on July 10 – will debut a new larger-than-life production that promises to deliver “an innovative and interactive celebration of the continued power of Queen's music.”

See also:

Queen biopic Bohemian Rhapsody nominated for two Screen Actors Guild Awards
Queen: Bohemian Rhapsody named most-streamed classic rock song of all time
Queen biopic Bohemian Rhapsody nominated for two Golden Globe Awards
Queen and Adam Lambert announce Rhapsody North American tour
Search Queen at hennemusic