Brian May has shared a new and innovative video of “On My Way Up,” one of the highlights of his second solo album, 1998’s Another World.
The clip marks the release Friday April 22 of a multi-format, meticulously repackaged deluxe edition of the album in the legendary Queen guitarist’s Gold Series, featuring the remastered original album alongside remixes, rarities and live tracks in the 2CD and box set formats.
The new video shows Brian in reflective mood in his home attic as he leaves through old photographs of himself and memorabilia from his stellar career. As the uplifting, feel-good track plays, we see a clever combination of new and historical video and still images of the Queen guitar hero. You can check it out below.
A regular feature of Brian’s solo concerts, “On My Way Up” is an optimistic belter originally commissioned for the 1994 Series 2 of the ITV comedy drama series Frank Stubbs while work on Queen’s Made in Heaven album proceeded. Backing singers Cathy Porter and Shelley Preston help the melody reach a high, in tune with the character of Stubbs as a lead figure in the series.
“The central character of this song is someone who is basically a loser,” says May, “but has total belief and a kind of insane optimism, and he’s going somewhere, you know, ‘Man, I’m on my way’ kind of thing. So that’s what the song was. It became imbued with different things once I got going on the track, but it’s basically funny. It’s funny, and it’s optimistic and loud.”
He adds that while he was creating the song, “I had a moment of belief and joy thinking, ‘Yeah, I can actually can do this, it’s going to be fine. It’s a very joyful song, and that’s one of the forces which propelled me through the album and made me want to release it and makes me want to release it now.”
The 15-track rarities collection in the new edition of the album, titled ‘Another Disc’, also features Brian’s live version of “On My Way Up,” as performed in Paris in 1998, and a new guitar version, of which he says: “It’s nice to just pick up the guitar and sing it with a guitar, so there’s a couple of those versions on there. I particularly like the one of ‘On My Way Up’ because it’s very kind of rude. It’s just raw, and I’ve done nothing to it apart from playing.”
The new “On My Way Up” clip is the latest in a series of videos highlighting the reissue of a landmark album in May’s solo career. These also include a Bri-Art lyric video for his version of Buddy Holly’s “Maybe Baby,” one of the rarities on the second disc, and another short film in which he talks about revisiting the island of El Hierro, where the memorable front cover image for Another World was captured.
In his new Another World 2022 album liner notes, Brian notes how far we have all traveled since the album’s release in 1998, but also that the exploration feels very appropriate at this time. “It seems perhaps that in 2022 we ARE in Another World,” he writes, “but if it’s not quite the world we asked for, perhaps we can still reach that perfect world… in our dreams. JOIN ME!!!”