ROCK star Brian May urged people to "get off your ass and vote" and back candidates they personally believe in rather than support individual parties.

The Queen guitarist called for people to vote "colour-blind" and move away from a political culture which he said was dominated by too many MPs influenced by their own career or business interests.

May spoke about his Common Decency campaign in Brighton where he backed Green Party Brighton Pavilion candidate Caroline Lucas who he hailed as a "hero".

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He said: "More than half of MPs in the House are too much influenced by their career, too much influenced by business interests, too much influenced by the whip who'll make them vote according to the party line."

The Common Decency campaign was launched last month in a bid to elect politicians who May said would "act decently, transparently and accountably" once in Parliament.

He singled out Ms Lucas - who became Britain's first Green Party MP in 2010 - as someone who has "the courage of their convictions".

On his campaign, May said: "It's politics without colour. It's colour-blind politics. What we are saying is do not assume that your vote will be wasted, get up off your ass and vote.

"Secondly, don't vote for a party, vote for someone you personally believe in, someone who will have a decent conscience and will represent your views in Parliament.

"Number three - tell everyone else to vote as well because it's so important."

He added that he wants to see more people elected on their qualities, not according to which political party they belong.

May went on: "I believe that if you end up with a Parliament next time with a good mixture of politicians it will no longer be possible for the major parties to bully people and carry on their policies regardless."

He said he was trying to persuade Russell Brand, who reportedly urged people not to vote, that his campaign is worth supporting.

Asked whether he thought Brand was "irresponsible", he said: "I think he speaks from the heart. I think he has been slightly mis-quoted, that do not vote quote has been taken out of context.

"I think what he says is that as long as things are as they are, it doesn't make any sense to vote.

"I personally am hoping to convince Russell that what we are offering ... that it's worth voting for and I'm hoping he'll say yes."

Ms Lucas said that as an unwhipped MP her voice in Parliament was "far stronger" and that the whip system obstructs democracy and progressive reform.

She said: "Politics should be a public service, accountable and transparent. It should look like the people it's supposed to represent.

"Good MPs work across parties for the public good and I'm fortunate to have been able to cultivate those relationships - but the political system is completely geared against that mindset. But politics can change - and if we want a fairer future, it must."

Earlier, Green Party leader in England and Wales, Natalie Bennett, joined Ms Lucas in Brighton to present a billboard campaign urging people to "vote big, vote brave".

Ms Bennett said: "The time for half measures is over. This country desperately needs bold changes to take us away from business-as-usual politics.

"More people than ever will have a chance to vote Green at this election. Our message is clear: don't vote for second best, vote for what you believe in."

She said a Green vote would ensure big firms and rich individuals would pay their "fair share" and wages would be enough to build a life on.

Ms Lucas said: "We have a bold message that will resonate with the people of Brighton and Hove, and across the country.

"Only the Green Party is willing to stand up to the establishment parties on issues like climate change, a resilient economy and protecting the NHS."

The Green Party have vowed to put up the top rate of tax to 60p in the pound, which Ms Bennett said would bring in an extra £2 billion a year for public services while acting as a disincentive to firms paying "excessively high salaries".

And she has said her party wanted to call for a review of all "commercial animal racing", saying there were animal protection issues which need to be addressed.