One night while watching Amazon Prime on TV, I noticed a documentary on Queen and decided to watch it. I am certainly a fan of Queen and Freddie Mercury, but never until now did I appreciate how phenomenal this band truly is. As a kid and teenager I heard and sang along like millions of others. As an adult 40+ years later, I listed to it now with a new awareness and realization.In my opinion, there is a divine beauty to the music of Queen. In this new matured listening experience, I am reminded of the first time I truly listened to Mozart or saw pictures of his magnificent home town of Salzburg, Austria; I am equally in total awe of the sheer beauty!Click To Tweet
The Story of Queen: Mercury Rising
Admittingly, I was a bit confused at first as to what was what when I saw promotions for Bohemian Rhapsody the movie and original soundtrack. The Story of Queen: Mercury Rising is the title of the documentary produced by Maureen Goldthorpe that I watched on Amazon Prime TV, which is not the Bohemian Rhapsody Movie or it’s soundtrack, which is available on vinyl.
Mercury Rising has actual footage of the band and interviews individuals who were present during the meteoric rise of Queen in the 1970s. In essence, this documentary is what led me to rediscover Queen and listen with a renewed and deeper interest.
Who knew Freddie Mercury’s real name was Farrokh Bulsara, is of Indian descent, and grew up in a boarding school on the island of Zanzibar, off the west coast of African? They taught him how to play piano and sing. I would say they did a mighty fine job!
My point is, Mercury Rising was a very informative documentary and serves as a useful primer to prepare for the recently released Bohemain Rhapsody movie. While several of the tunes in Queen’s catalog are discussed, particular attention is given to the pioneering music and video production of “Bohemian Rhapsody”, which was released in 1975 on A Night at the Opera.
Bohemian Rhapsody Movie
The Bohemian Rhapsody Movie: Fearless Lives Forever was released on November 2, 2018, by a joint venture of 20th Century Fox, GK Films, New Regency, and Queen films. Queen guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger Taylor served as consultants in the making of this biographical film. It casts Rami Malek as Freddie Mercury and is directed by Brian Singer.
Personally, I have not seen the movie yet as I quit going to theaters when cell phones got popular, but now that texting has become prevalent, I may stretch my comfort zone and go for it having been completely blown away by the heavenly soundtrack. This remaster of the classic Queen tracks which will introduce new fans to the much deserved categorization of “Rock Opera”!.
Queen’s Rhythm Secion
As I listen to this movie soundtrack, I must say I am completely impressed by the musicianship and vocal ability of the entire band. Of course, we all know about Freddie Mercury and most are familiar with Brian May’s piercing guitar solos, but the rhythm section of Queen should be lauded as well.
Some of John Deacon’s bass licks were reminiscent of some of John Paul Jones’ melodic riffs, which in hindsight was probably happening roughly at the same point in history. Roger Taylor’s drumming technique seems to be underrated and his high piercing vocal harmonies greatly contribute to the operatic influence for which Freddie Mercury had in mind.
Bohemian Rhapsody Movie Soundtrack
In the beginning of the Bohemian Rhapsody movie soundtrack, you will hear the 20th Century Fox drum roll off and hook fanfare found in the beginning of the films. I knew it sounded edgier and more recent than I remembered it, and it has come to my attention that this rendition was performed by Brian May and Roger Taylor. Here is the line up of Queen tunes presented in the movie soundtrack of Bohemian Rhapsody:
- Somebody to Love (2011 Remaster)
- Doing All Right (…revisited)
- Keep Yourself alive (Live at The Rainbow)
- Killer Queen (2011 Remaster)
- Fat Bottomed Girls (Live in Paris)
- Bohemian Rhapsody (2011 Remaster)
- Now I’m Here (Live at The Hammersmith Odeon)
- Crazy Little Thing Called Love (2011 Remaster)
- Love of My Life (Live at Rock in Rio Festival)
- We Will Rock You (Movie Mix)
- Another One Bites The Dust (2011 Remaster)
- I Want to Break Free
- Under Pressure (Remastered)[Featuring David Bowie]
- Who Wants to Live Forever (2011 Remaster)
- Bohemian Rhapsody (Live Aid)
- Radio Ga Ga (Live Aid)
- Ay-Oh (Live Aid)
- Hammer to Fall (Live Aid)
- We Are The Champions (Live Aid)
- Don’t Stop me Now (…revisited)
- The Show Must Go On (2011 Remaster)
Person Interpretation of the Meaning of Bohemian Rhapsody
Before reading anyone else’s personal interpretation of the meaning of Bohemian Rhapsody, I will attempt to do my own. I could be way off and/or you could completely disagree with my analysis. If so, please comment below. Like I said earlier, I have always been a Queen fan, but am now listening and interpreting with a renewed interest from a matured perspective. Please accept my apologies in advance if anything I write is inaccurate or offensive.
Here we go… My opinion is that Freddie Mercury was struggling with inner conflict about being gay, and Bohemian Rhapsody was his way of “coming out”, if you will. It sounds as though his mother was not very accepting of his situation and and did not accept it. Mercury sings that she pulled “my” trigger, which I find odd at the least or incredibly ingenious and prophetic, in that Farrokh Bulsara is now dead and Freddie Mercury is in full acceptance as his role as a gay rock star.
Freddie didn’t mean to make his mama cry, but knew that he had to move on with his life and there was no turning back. He had to leave his past behind to face the truth and carry on.
There was still external conflict within his family; some wanted to “Let him go!”. Other did not, i.e. “We will not let you go!”. This family conflict was considered a monstrosity.
When the movement shifts to Brian May’s electrifying guitar riff, I feel that Freddie has accepted himself, the tension is over, and a new-found freedom and independence has emerged. No one will ever again bully him, spit in his eye or leave him to die.
In the end, nothing really matters and the wind still blows.
The soundtrack to the Bohemian Rhapsody movie is fantastic and highly recommended. Don’t miss out on this one! A vinyl version is available via Amazon. Enjoy!