February 6, 2023

Queen co-founder and guitarist Brian May has been knighted. As one of the first to receive the honor under the recently crowned King Charles, as part of the 2023 edition of the King’s New Year Honours List, he is now Sir Brian Harold May. He was knighted “for services to music and charity work.” May was previously appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) back in 2005.

“I’m happy and grateful to receive this honor,” May said in a statement. “I will regard the knighthood not so much as a reward, but more as a charge—a commission—for me to continue to fight for justice – to be a voice for those who have no voice.  I will endeavor to be worthy – to be that Knight in Shining Armor.”

In addition to his work in one of the biggest classic rock bands of all time, May is also an accomplished astrophysicist, having received his PhD back in 2007. May previously co-founded Asteroid Day, an effort to raise awareness for how the planet should ready itself for the potential dangers of asteroid impact, which the United Nations recognized as an official holiday in 2016.

An illustration with images of Queen Elizabeth and punk musicians

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