“We Will Rock You.”
Practically everyone knows those lyrics to the famous Queen song. Come May 12, fans will get to sing along when tribute act Queen Nation takes the stage at The Coach House in San Juan Capistrano.
Based on the West Coast, the cover band is a regular at the South Orange County venue. Guitarist Mike McManus said they’ve played to sold-out shows there before.
Given some of the other names who’ve played The Coach House, including Kenny Loggins and Hall & Oates, such a turnout is “moving” for the band members, McManus said.
While Queen Nation plays bigger venues like the City National Grove of Anaheim and Angel Stadium, they enjoy more intimate settings that serve several hundred people like The Coach House, McManus said. Having people sing along right by the band was likened to a “homecoming” by McManus.
“The staff there is great,” he said.
The May date is a “perfect time” to squeeze in a San Juan stop into their spring schedule, he said.
Queen Nation plays all the big Queen hits audiences love but is also able to perform lesser-known B-sides. The tribute act came together years ago when their agent heard about a venue owner who wanted a Queen cover band to perform.
The members of Queen Nation had their first rehearsal after feelers were put out and felt portraying the iconic arena rock act could either be a good decision or go south.
Considering Queen Nation is celebrating its 19th anniversary this year, one could argue they made a good decision.
“That’s twice as long as the Beatles were around,” McManus said of their longevity.
Queen Nation’s target audience when they started out included people that saw Queen live. Now that time has passed and younger fans have discovered Queen and other classic rock acts, that audience has expanded to include fans born after Queen’s heyday.
The biopic Bohemian Rhapsody provided an additional boost.
“Queen’s music is very uplifting,” McManus said. “It’s very communal. ‘We Are the Champions.’ ‘We Will Rock You.’ It’s songs to sing while you put your arm around your best friend.”
McManus also called Queen’s repertoire “timeless” and one that can motivate families to drive down from Northern California to see renditions like Queen Nation.
“We just want to thank everyone who’s been coming to support us at The Coach House,” he said.
What: Queen Nation
When: Friday, May 12. Doors open at 6 p.m.; concert starts at 8 p.m.
Where: 33157 Camino Capistrano, San Juan Capistrano
For tickets or more info: thecoachhouse.com. Tickets are $35.