Struggling for time, so I thought I'd repost this as it's timely for two reasons. Firstly, I suggested a Queen song over on the latest edition of The Chain this week and spurred a little debate. Secondly, it's 25 years ago this week since Freddie passed away and Queen died with him. Hard to believe, but harder still is the fact that they've been gone longer than they were around. (All due respect to Brian - not Roger, because he's an arse - but you can't have Queen without Freddie. John had the right idea.)
I still remember the day Freddie died. I was at uni at the time and I remember sitting in the lecture theatre, not hearing a word. He was probably the first real hero I lost. 25 years later... well, look at the year we've had. I don't suppose it'll get any easier...
Originally posted September 2012 - I've not changed the order, though I probably would have done if I'd thought about it...
Queen were the first band I ever truly loved. The idea of choosing only ten of their songs was just too daunting. So here's my Top Ten of the stuff everybody knows. Give me a break - I still had FORTY songs to choose from. One day I'll bore you with my Top Ten Queen Album Tracks. Until then...
The last great Queen single, by which time Freddie was a shadow of his former self. Not that you'd know it, listening to this.
9. Hammer To Fall
Not the obvious choice from The Works album, but although Radio Gaga soundtracked my adolescence ("I'd sit alone and watch your light, my only friend through teenage nights") and I Want To Break Free features the wonderful video that ended the band's American career, there's something special about Hammer To Fall. Might be the guitar hero power chords - Brian May did invent the air guitar, after all.
8. Spread Your Wings
I'll be honest, I didn't even know this had been released as a single. It only ever reached number 34 in the charts, but it's always been a favourite.
7. Tie Your Mother Down
Tie your mother down6. Breakthru
Tie your mother down
Take your little brother swimmin'
With a brick that's all right
Late 80s Queen is often dismissed by purists... but then, Queen are often dismissed by musos in general. Time to irk them further then. I was 17 when this song came out and I sank my heart into it, convinced it was the anthem that would change things between me and whichever lacklustre young lass was ignoring my feeble attentions that week.
Plus - Queen perform atop a high speed locomotive in the video. What else do you need?
5. Killer Queen
I keep meaning to write an in-joke into one of my comics in which a certain character keeps her Moët & Chandon in a pretty cabinet. Nobody would get the joke, but it'd make me smile every time I looked at it.
4. You're My Best Friend
If I'm in the right frame of mind, this song makes me weep. I know, I'm weird.
3. Seven Seas Of Rhye
Nobody did utter nonsense quite like Freddie & the gang. This, their first ever hit, ends on a slice of music hall frippery that never fails to remind me of the opening to The Queen Is Dead. Coincidence?
Meanwhile, just listen to that piano!
2. Bohemian Rhapsody
You may have expected to find this at number one. Or you might have predicted I'd be controversial and drop it from the list entirely. It's impossible to ignore though, and there was a time in my life when I considered it the greatest song ever written. Me, Wayne, and Garth... party on - excellent!
1. Somebody To Love
Before I discovered The Smiths, this song was my How Soon Is Now.
Each morning I get up I die a little...
Any other Queen fans out there? Outraged that I didn't have room for A Kind Of Magic, Flash, or Crazy Little Thing Called Love. I feel your pain... but there can be only ten.