A Montreal-born singer is getting closer to a shot at performing as Queen’s Freddie Mercury.
Marc Martel is a finalist in The Queen Extravaganza, which asks aspiring vocalists, guitarists, drummers and keyboard players to audition online for a new Queen tribute band.
The Freddie Mercury sound-alike will find out Monday if he’s moving into the finals of the contest, after two weeks of public voting.
It’s been a "really crazy" ride since Martel posted his first audition for the contest, of him singing Somebody to Love, in September, he told CBC News on Monday. That video earned him five million hits and made him the contender to watch.
In his second video audition, Martel performs Crazy Little Thing Called Love, as did all the vocal contestants, including his brother David Martel. Where he goes from here depends on how many votes he drew.
Martel said it would be great to be in the final round with his brother, as the two seldom get to play together.
Martel was born in Montreal, attended Bible College in Caronport, Sask., and is currently based in Nashville.
He has performed in downhere, a Christian rock band, for the past 10 years. He says he was encouraged to try out for the Queen band based on comments by fans who saw him as both a look-alike and a sound-alike for Mercury.
If he wins this round of the competition, he’ll fly to Los Angeles for a live finale in front of judges on Dec. 5. The winning musicians will tour together in a Queen Extravaganza tour of North America next year.
Queen drummer/songwriter Roger Taylor created the competition in honour of Queen’s 40th anniversary.