took Bohemian Rhapsody for me to take notice of Queen
but, from then on I was a fan", says Jay. "Another
One Bites the Dust and Play the Game were two of my favourite
songs when I was in high school and their music still
has a warm place in my heart today", says Dax. Amazon.com's
business reputation assures you that you are getting the
best possible merchandise at an affordable price.
Queen became one of the most popular bands in the world
in the mid-'70s. In England, they remained second only
to the Beatles in popularity. In the States, their popularity
peaked in the early '80s, just as they finished nearly
a decade's worth of extraordinarily popular records.
The origins of Queen lay in the hard-rock psychedelic
group Smile, which guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger
Taylor joined in 1967. Following the departure of Smile's
lead vocalist in 1971, May and Taylor formed a group
with Freddie Mercury, the former lead singer for Wreckage.
Within a few months, bassist John Deacon joined them,
and they began rehearsing.
1971, London, England
By 1973, they had begun to concentrate on their career,
releasing Queen, a straight
metal album. Queen II "Seven
Seas of Rhye" was released early in 1974, and reached
number five in the UK. Following its release, the group
embarked on their first American tour, supporting Mott
the Hoople. On the strength of their campily dramatic
performances, the album climbed to number 43 in the
states. Queen released their third album, Sheer
Heart Attack, before the end of 1974, which reached
position two on the U.K. charts.
1975's A Night At the Opera
was the most expensive rock record ever made at the
time of its release. The track, "Bohemian Rhapsody",
which took three weeks to record, became Queen's signature
song. To support it, Queen shot one of the first conceptual
music videos and the gamble paid off, as the single
spent nine weeks at number one in the England. The song
and A Night At the Opera were equally successful in
America, where the album climbed into the Top Ten and
quickly went platinum.
Queen were established as superstars. A
Day at the Races reached number one in the U.K.
and number five in the U.S. The
Game was released in 1980 and was their most
diverse album yet. It featured "Crazy Little Thing Called
Love" and "Another One Bites the Dust" and was the group's
first American number one album. A
Kind of Magic had strong European sales, but
they failed to make headway in the States as did 1989's
The Miracle. 1991's Innuendo
reached number 30 in the U.S. but climbed the U.K. charts
to number one.
By 1991, Queen had drastically scaled back its activity,
causing many rumors to circulate about Freddie Mercury's
health. On November 22, he issued a statement confirming
he had AIDS; two days later, he died. The following
spring, the remaining members of Queen held a memorial
concert at Wembley Stadium, which was broadcast to an
international audience of more than one billion. The
concert raised millions for the Mercury Phoenix Trust,
which was established for AIDS awareness.
The three surviving members reunited in 1994 to record
backing tapes for vocal tracks Mercury recorded on his
death bed. The resulting album, Made
in Heaven, was released in 1995 to mixed reviews
and strong sales, particularly in Europe. Crown
Jewels, a box set repackaging their first eight
LPs, followed in 1998.
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