Contact Us

That Time Brian May and Eddie Van Halen Teamed Up to Record the ‘Star Fleet Project’

On Oct. 31, 1983, the Star Fleet Project blasted off. No, this wasn’t a NASA initiative, but the brainchild of Brian May.

It all started when the Queen guitar god and astrophysicist’s son hooked his dad onto the Japanese television series X Bomber, which was renamed Star Fleet in the U.K. This inspired the elder May to re-record the show’s theme song with some friends.

Luckily, May’s pals included rockers like REO Speedwagon drummer Alan Gratzer, journeyman keyboardist Fred Mandel (Alice CooperPink Floyd), session bassist Phil Chen (Jeff BeckRod Stewart), Queen colleague Roger Taylor (who provided backing vocals) and Eddie Van Halen.

Together, this formidable wrecking crew ripped through an extended hard-rock arrangement of the “Star Fleet Theme,” cut an unused May composition called “Let Me Out” and then jammed on a 12-minute tribute to Eric Clapton that they fittingly titled “Blues Breaker.” According to Van Halen News Desk, the whole thing was done in two days.

VHND also notes that there were no plans to release the sessions at first. “I could have put these tapes in a bottom of a drawer and kept them as a private record of one of the best experiences of my life,“ May said at the time.

But fortunately the collection of stars, eventually billed as Brian May + Friends, released the ‘Star Fleet’ mini-album to document not only one of Eddie’s rare musical field trips outside the Van Halen compound, but a clash of guitar titans for the ages. You can listen to it above.

Queen Albums, Ranked Worst to Best

Next: Top 10 Brian May Queen Songs

Best of 106.9 Classic Rock

Recommended For You

Best of the Web

Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing VIP profile. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to using your original account information.

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

(Forgot your password?)

Not a member? Sign up here

Sign up for All Access Pass quickly by connecting your Facebook account. It's just as secure and no password to remember!

Sign up to have exclusive All Access Pass contests, events, coupons, presales, and much more delivered to you for FREE.