A 1970’s Time Capsule
The A to Z Challenge has dueling decades going on. Check out the 1980s theme from a fellow blogger HERE
Queen, the British rock band, not her majesty, was formed in London in 1970. The bands line-up was Freddie Mercury (lead vocals, piano), Brian May (guitar, vocals), Roger Taylor (drums, vocals), and John Deacon (bass guitar). Queen’s earliest works were influenced by progressive rock, hard rock and heavy metal, but the band gradually ventured into more conventional and radio-friendly works by incorporating further styles, such as arena rock and pop rock, into their music.
Queen first charted in the UK with their second album, Queen II, in 1974, but it was the release of Sheer Heart Attack later that year and A Night at the Opera in 1975 which brought them international success. The latter featured “Bohemian Rhapsody”, which stayed at number one in the UK for nine weeks and popularized the music video. Of course its use in the 1992 film, Wayne’s World was a classic.
Their 1977 album, News of the World, contained “We Will Rock You” and “We Are the Champions”, which have become anthems at sporting events. By the early 1980s, Queen were one of the biggest stadium rock bands in the world. Their performance at 1985’s Live Aid is ranked among the greatest in rock history by various music publications, with a 2005 industry poll ranking it the best.
The performance during Live Aid was over 24 minutes so I didn’t embed it here. You can find it on Youtube. I have written about Live Aid before.
In 1991, Mercury died of bronchopneumonia, a complication of AIDS, and Deacon retired in 1997. Since then, May and Taylor have occasionally performed together, including with Paul Rodgers (2004–09) and with Adam Lambert (since 2011). In November 2014, Queen released a new album, Queen Forever, featuring vocals from the late Mercury.
The band have released a total of 18 number one albums, 18 number one singles, and 10 number one DVDs. Estimates of their record sales generally range from 150 million to 300 million records, making them one of the world’s best-selling music artists. Queen received the Outstanding Contribution to British Music Award from the British Phonographic Industry in 1990. They were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2001.
There is so much written about this band. I don’t think I can do them justice for this brief post. Here are a few online places to find out more including viewing and hearing all their great music.
A to Z on the Music Charts
Question of My Childhood by Kansas was the B side of their tremendously popular Carry On My Wayward Son released in 1975.