It’s not often that you get to see some of the world’s greatest musicians come together and perform one of the most beautiful, iconic tracks of all time. Those who attended the Queen’s Golden Jubilee in 2002 had no prior knowledge that they were about to witness just such a collaboration live on stage while celebrating the Queen’s 50th year as a monarch.
During this milestone event, celebrities and public figures from around the globe gathered to commemorate the Queen’s reign, with live performances keeping everyone happily entertained. One of the most memorable acts of the evening featured three crucial musical figures: Joe Cocker singing The Beatles’ soulful hit “With A Little Help From My Friends”, featuring Brian May on guitar and Phil Collins on drums. You can view this incredible performance in the video below:
The Royal Jubilee celebrations offer a varied and energetic blend of the world’s best and brightest musical minds and have been a British tradition for centuries. There are several forms of Jubilee, each marking a certain milestone of the Monarch’s service. A Silver Jubilee celebrates 25 years of service; 50 years brings forth a Golden Jubilee and 60 and 70 years celebrations are known as Diamond and Platinum Jubilees respectively.
The late Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee was the first of its kind in history. If there was ever a video to showcase the legendary vocal talent of Joe Cocker, it would be this video. His ability to create a soulful atmosphere with his honest, touching voice was unparalleled; despite his almost accidental rise to fame, he quickly became one of the best-known classic rock vocalists in history.
These talents are only amplified by the smooth backing choirs behind this larger-than-life voice that is sadly no longer with us. A perfect pairing to this powerful, majestic voice is the blinding musicianship of Queen’s guitarist, Brian May. Many musicians have a signature sound, and May is no exception. His miniature solos and progressions in between Cocker’s bursts of passionate bellowing make for a truly captivating performance, only made better by Genesis’ Phil Collins providing drum support all the way through this Beatles track.
We all love a refreshing crossover in the world of music. They can elevate the excitement of an already uplifting song, or add new emotional depths to a ballad that we could never contemplate prior to hearing it. The attendees of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in 2012 would be treated to yet another wonderful collaboration: Jools Holland and Ruby Turner covering the timeless “You Are So Beautiful”. Turner’s R&B vocalisations and exquisite voice with Holland’s signature piano majesty created a heartwarming ode to the classic love song.
Even today, these collaborations create new memories of classic songs that can change their meaning entirely. When the modern pop artist Billie Eilish performed at one of her massive LA shows in 2022, she brought on Dave Grohl of the Foo Fighters for an acoustic rendition of their iconic anthem, “My Hero”. Fans were moved by this, as it was recently dedicated to the memory of Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins who passed earlier that year.