With “Don’t Stop Me Now,” Queen set a beat for strutting

With “Don’t Stop Me Now,” Queen set a beat for strutting

In Hear This, A.V. Club writers sing the praises of songs they know well—some inspired by a weekly theme and some not, but always songs worth hearing. This week, in celebration of Mardi Gras, we’re picking songs we think could soundtrack our personal parades.

I wasn’t sure what I’d pick for this week’s theme when it came up. Some New Orleans brass band music? “Staying Alive”? Then I saw Paul Rudd’s outstanding lip-sync performance on The Tonight Show, and it just clicked. I had to go with Queen’s “Don’t Stop Me Now.” The 1979 single is defiant, rocking, and sets the perfect mood for my own personal parade, whatever that might mean.

While I’m not generally kept from having a good time, I especially like the message of the song: There’s no stopping me, because I’m going to do what I want, no matter what. It’s a little extreme, of course, but there’s something appealing about being “a racing car passing by like Lady Godiva,” or “floating around in ecstasy.” And while I’m not sure “I’m a sex machine ready to reload,” I just might be “a rocket ship on my way to Mars / on a collision course.” Even if I’m not, this song is so good—and Freddie Mercury is so compelling—that after a listen or two, the lyrics always have me pretty much convinced that I’m damn near invincible. It’s like I’m RuPaul strutting the runway and ready to work—and that’s a very good feeling.


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