In an op-ed released Thursday in Billboard, Adam Lambert says he hopes Freddie Mercury would be proud of how he's carrying on his legacy.

Mercury, the flamboyant frontman for Queen, died in 1991 from complications related to AIDS. The 36-year-old Lambert has toured extensively with Queen.

“I didn't get fully obsessed with Queen until I was in my early 20s, and Freddie was one of my heroes,” Lambert said. “Musically, I loved his attack: He was very aggressive and seemed in control of everything he was singing. Later, seeing some live performances [on video], it was also his stage presence, the way he was so over the top. I knew he meant to be campy and wild to entertain people. I identified with that in him very quickly.”

“I feel like I’ve been given this amazing opportunity to carry on a torch for a man who was ahead of his time. It’s something I can talk openly about, and I don’t know if he felt that way. Maybe he did, but I don’t think the world did. It’s interesting representing some of the ideas about what he was for today’s world.”'

“When I came on the scene, it definitely felt like a bit of an uphill battle, with a lot more middle-aged straight dudes making a lot of [industry] decisions. That’s changing. Someone like Troye [Sivan] or Sam [Smith] or Olly [Alexander] from Years & Years or Hayley Kiyoko can say, 'This is who I am,' which is what I’ve been trying to do, too. I always wonder if Freddie is looking down on us, excited that the times have changed. I hope I’m carrying on his legacy in a way that would make him proud and that he would get a kick out of. And I hope he’s envious of my footwear collection,” Lambert added.