12 February 1981, Queen performed at Nippon Budokan in Tokyo, Japan 🇯🇵 a short ‘Flash Gordon’ tour (The Game Tour)

This is the first of five shows at the Budokan, which are essentially warm-up gigs for the upcoming stadium shows in South America. In an interview on Japanese TV, Brian May says the reason they only played the Budokan was because of their lighting rig. Extra scaffolding needed to be installed into the hall to accomodate it, which he says wasn’t possible at the other venues they had played in the past. At the end of the interview he adds, “We’re particularly glad that we seem to be accepted as a musical group as well as what you call an idol group now.”

Fat Bottomed Girls is excellent tonight (particularly Mercury in the third verse). The audience dutifully sing their part in Love Of My Life, to which he responds, “It’s easy if you try, folks!”

In a TV interview the day before their first concert in Argentina, Brian expands on this latest experience in Japan: “It’s the best tour we’ve done there, and we’ve done four tours, and it was clearly hysterical. Our audience is changing a bit from a kind of teeny-bop audience into a more rock audience in Japan. Japan was one of the few places where we had a young audience, but now it’s more in line with how it is in the States and Europe.”

The picture of Freddie during soundcheck was taken by Koh Hasebe

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