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Robbie Williams says he turned down Queen frontman job

By | Published on Friday 6 March 2020

Robbie Williams

Robbie Williams has said that he rejected an offer to replace Freddie Mercury as Queen’s frontman almost 20 years ago due to his “low self-esteem”.

“Even though I’m very confident here on the microphone, I have very low self-esteem”, he told SiriusXM. “And I just thought I’d save them the audacity of me even trying to step on a stage and be the same echelon as Freddie Mercury. He, to me, is angelic. He’s godlike. It was just too scary”. Also, he admitted, “I was doing stadiums myself at the time. I didn’t want to have to split it three ways, but that’s another story”.

There were plenty of rumours in 2001 that Williams was set to front a planned Queen reunion. He did record a new version of ‘We Are The Champions’ with Brian May and Roger Taylor for the film ‘A Knight’s Tale’ – bassist John Deacon having retired – but it went no further than that.

May and Taylor eventually teamed up with Bad Company singer Paul Rodgers to tour as Queen from 2004 to 2009 of course. And since 2011 Adam Lambert has stood in for Mercury, which Williams reckons is a more suitable fit than himself.

“If he wasn’t such a lovely person – which he is – I would just be terrified of him because of his pure talent”, Williams says of Lambert. “His voice is absolutely incredible. And he’s an incredible performer, and a lovely person to boot. I’m really pleased when I meet people that I’m just overawed by their talent – he gives me a talent hard-on – and they’re nice. It’s much better than meeting people that give you a talent hard-on and they’re arseholes. You’re just like, ‘Oh, I hate everything you’ve done now'”.