Sorry for the delays…. I didn’t realise how much time I am away from my computer and also places still do not have internet:-/!!
Jim asked why the Freddie memorial has been removed in Feltham.
As far as I know It has been moved to a different place as it was being damaged where it was. I seem to remember seeing a photo of it near some garden, so it does still exist.
Francisco asked about John Deacon’s role in the recording on the Innuendo album.
There was never a time when any member of the band was actually used as a session musician. Of course, there were times when one wasn’t used as much, take for example John’s Back Chat and even I Want to Break Free where there is very little if any guitar. I suppose only Freddie and Roger were ever fully occupied in the making of any track. As I have said before, one member of the band would arrive in the studio with an idea, but the end result was the input of all four of the guys, plus the co-producer at the time. Also for Sergio, I’m afraid Seven Seas of Rhye was well before my time and Freddie never really discussed anything about it’s magical world with me. In answer to Olly’s question regarding Freddie writing his music, Freddie could read music, as he shad piano lessons when he was young, but generally when he was composing his songs he created the music around chord progressions, and as everything he played was recorded, he had no need to write the notes down. I remember once in Garden Lodge, Freddie asked me to write down the chords as he played them. He then put the paper away until the next recording session, played the chords and he remembered the tune he had in his mind before.
Angelo wanted to know about the near break up of the band in the 80s.
There was a time before Live Aid when the Band had drifted apart, due to various things. Mainly Freddie was being influenced from outside the band. He was recording his first solo album and was being told by Paul Prenter that he was bigger than the rest of the band, that he would be better off on his own. Queen had been together for about 14-15 years at the time and Freddie thought that there wasn’t too much left that the band as a whole could give to the world. After a big band meeting in Switzerland they thought they would give it one more try, the results speak for themselves…. They came up with the Magic album, The Miracle, Innuendo and the tracks that Freddie recorded for the others before November 1991, and don’t forget Barcelona, which Freddie regarded as some of his best work. When it came down to it, Freddie knew that he could create what he wanted on his own, but his life, his music revolved around QUEEN.
Chris asked if I listen to Queen a lot.
Maybe not as much as the most devoted fans, but yes, I do listen to the music. I have aquired quite a collection over the years, not only the original discs and cds, but also Queen it different forms. There are a few recordings of Queen featuring cover bands and orchestras, which I do find interesting. The most recent cd I received is an officially recognized cd of Queen in a swing arrangement. So of you will have heard the Pirate Swing Band perform in Montreux last year, the resulting cd is a good listen.
Alexis asked if I miss Freddie.
Of course I miss him. We spent virtually every day together for about 11 years. He was my reason for getting up in the mornings, to be around when he needed something, to be ready for my job. Not so often now, but still occasionally I will do or see something and think to myself…. I must remember to tell Freddie this next time we talk!
I am getting quite excited at the prospect of seeing the Queen Backstage Exhibition in Dresden next month. I will be there for the opening weekend and it promises to be a very interesting time. The Mercury Phoenix Trust will be represented and hopefully I will get to see some of you there!