The Queen stars are currently promoting the upcoming release of the eagerly-awaited Live Around The World album and film. It is a collection of their favourite concert performances over the past eight years with new frontman Adam Lambert. Of course, no conversations could be complete without also talking about the band’s original singer, songwriter and showman, Freddie. Even after all these years, Brian and Roger still find new aspects of their extraordinary friend to reveal.
Roger was asked what Freddie was really like – an impossible question.
He said: “He was my best buddy so it’s hard for me to say. He was quite shy in some ways, a dark horse… Like the way he came up with all those wonderful lyrics when you never saw him reading a book.
“He was also ambitious and never doubted we would make it.”
Queen’s Freddie Mercury, Brian May and Roger Taylor
Queen in the early days
Roger added: “He (Freddie) used to say, ‘Talent will out.'”
Yet, Brian also added that Freddie was also a little insecure at heart, despite the extraordinarily extroverted public persona.
Brian said; “At his core, Freddie was uncertain of himself.”
The Queen guitarist revealed how Freddie protected himself but also how utterly “ruthless and uncaring” he could appear.
Queen star Freddie Mercury
Brian said: “He built strong armour out of belief, focus and making use of the talents he had.
“He had a vision of where he wanted to be, which meant some people would find him uncaring or ruthless… If you did the wrong thing by Freddie it was very hard to get a second chance.”
And one thing came above all others for The Queen icon from the very beginning.
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Brian added: “Nothing was allowed to get in the way of his music.”
From the young boy singing in school bands to the teenager hiding lyrics under his pillow to the man on stage at Live Aid, the music always came first.
ORIGINAL INTERVIEW IN THE SATURDAY TIMES
LIVE AROUND THE WORLD IS OUT ON OCTOBER 2