12:35pm PT by Emily Zemler
Queen's Brian May Says 'The Voice' Is 'Dumb' and 'the Ultimate Insult To Music'
Queen guitarist Brian May is not among the fans of reality singing competition The Voice. In a recent post on his website, May said that the show, which has various editions around the world, including in the U.K., U.S. and Australia, is the “ultimate insult to music.”
“Sorry -- hate to be negative -- but I have to say this,” May wrote. “In my opinion, The Voice is absolutely the dullest, dumbest, most depressing programme on TV. It's also the ultimate insult to music and to performers. Every time I catch a glimpse of young singers busting their guts trying to win somebody's attention, who is rudely sitting with their back to the singer, I feel sick.”
The guitarist continues to compare The Voice to reality obstacle course show It’s A Knockout, writing that “This is not -- NOT -- what music is about.” Music, he explains, is not about forcing others to notice you but about conveying ideas and emotions. (Worth noting: Queen has appeared on American Idol multiple times over the the years, both as performers and mentors. They also headlined a series of shows overseas with Idol alum Adam Lambert on lead vocals.)
“We have messages, we have subtle emotions, we have beauty, which can only be shared by a performer in front of an audience whose whole attention is already freely given,” May writes. “The performance is all about EVERYTHING the performer gives in voice, in sound, in body language, in facial expression, in intimate eye contact. This stupid, stupid idea that someone can JUDGE a singer by turning his back on him, and missing out on proper contact, is, to me, fatuous nonsense. And actually poisonous to the growth of young performers.”
May also has an issue with Tom Jones, who recently appeared as a judge on the U.K. version of the show, writing that he hates seeing the musician “shoehorned into this scenario.”
He concluded the diatribe by noting that he hopes “this vile programme dies a natural death very soon,” but later amended this final statement via Twitter. “I feel I would rather not have said The Voice is vile,” May tweeted. “It’s merely annoying. People who disrespect animals or children are the vile ones.”