Tag Archives: Freddie

Freddie Mercury’s other woman after Mary ‘They were in love, she was even wilder than him’

Freddie Mercury's other woman after Mary 'They were in love, she was even wilder than him'

It’s A Hard Life remains most famous for its outrageously OTT video, but Freddie’s bandmate Brian May believes it is also one of his friend’s most beautiful compositions. There is a moment when the Queen frontman sings the iconic and heartfelt line, “Two lovers together, to love and live forever in each other’s hearts.” In the video, he is looking at the voluptuous and glamorous woman leaning over the balcony above him. This was Barbara Valentin, who shared two extraordinary years with Freddie in Munich. She remained close to him until the very end and was one of the few invited to his last ever birthday party.

This weekend marks the release of It’s A Hard Life in 1984. At the time, Freddie was already living in Munich. He had discovered the German city in 1979 when the band recorded the album The Game at the famous Musicland studios.

Freddie’s fame meant he increasingly struggled to find privacy in the UK at the same time as he had begun to explore his sexuality. Munich’s thriving gay scene offered him freedom and opportunity.

From 1983-1985 the star made Munich his home and even bought a flat with devoted new friend Barbara. 

READ MORE: Elvis Presley’s romance with teenage dancer after seeing her photo

Busty blonde bombshell Barbara was notorious in Germany as the provocative star of saucy films. Freddie loved her outrageous character and his friends believed he had met his match.

His PA and close friend Peter Freestone said: “They had the most intense, loving relationship. I know one hundred percent they shared a bed on numerous occasions.”

Another friend, West End star Peter Straker, said: “I was told he just met this woman who was larger than life. Barbara was very outrageous. She was the queen of nudity.”

Royal Ballet star Wayne Sleep added: “Freddie was with a woman. So I thought.’There you go. He’s not predictable at all, is he, this boy?.’”

Another friend said: “It was almost like he enjoyed being with someone who had a wilder reputation than him.

SCROLL DOWN FOR A VIDEO GALLERY OF FREDDIE AND BARBARA TOGETHER

Except, of course, Freddie was homosexual. While Wayne Sleep believed Freddie had slept with Barbara. He certainly spent nights with her at her apartment on Stollberg Strasse. Peter Freestone remains a little more coy on the subject.

He added: “I wasn’t sitting in the room. I can’t tell you yes or no if sex happened. If it had, Freddie could not have been quiet about it.”

In fact, for most of those two years in Munich, Freddie was also in a relationship with local restauranteur Winnie Kirschberger, despite the fact that neither spoke the other’s language.

Whatever her feelings for Freddie, Barbara was under no illusion about his sexuality. Like Mary before her, Barbara loved and supported the star and, in this case, provided even more vital and personal help to the men’s relationship. 

Freestone said: “it was sometimes comical to watch the arguments happening… Both Freddie and Winnie would be screaming at Barbara who had to do her best to try to sort out the jumbled emotions.”

It was an intense period in Freddie’s life but the star was beginning to feel homesick and Mary had finally completed all the renovations to his new London house, One Garden Lodge, in Kensington.

The tumultuous relationship with Winnie was fizzling out and a new man from London, Jim Hutton, was on the scene. Freddie never actually moved into the flat he bought with Barbara and returned to the UK. Although he split up with Winnie, Freddie remained close to Barbara for the rest of his life and she flew over to see him one last time in 1990.

In September 1990, Freddie threw his last ever birthday bash, a very smart formal dinner. The following year he would be far too ill.

His close friend Dave Clarke, who was the man by his side when he died, recalled a very intimate night, filled with those Freddie loved most, including Barbara, who sat either side of him with Mary.

Clarke said: “On his last birthday, he just invited 30 of his closest friends and there were 30 different courses, done by his personal chef, Joe Fanelli, and 30 different types of wine to go with each course.”

Freddie died the following November. Barbara herself passed away from a stroke on February 22, 2002.

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This post originally posted here Daily Express

Queen Live Aid: Did Freddie and Queen ‘cheat’ to sound louder when other bands ‘panicked’?

Queen Live Aid: Did Freddie and Queen 'cheat' to sound louder when other bands 'panicked'?

This was fictionalised in the film Bohemian Rhapsody which showed the band’s manager Jim Beach (rather than their sound engineer Trip Khalaf) ripping off the tape over the sound level controls to boost Queen’s volume.

This did not happen, nor was Khalaf ever able to “whack up the sound level.”

Express Online spoke to Malcolm Hill, whose company Hill Pro Audio was in charge of the sound systems at Wembley Stadium for Live Aid. He even received a formal letter from the Greater London Council commending them for maintaining the strict sound levels put in place.

He told Express Online: “Nobody on or around the stage would have had any control of, or even knowledge of, the sound system operation… The system was controlled by a ‘processor rack’, 100 metres away, in the middle of the pitch, tucked out of the way, to the side of the mix platform.”

However, Queen DID actually sound louder…

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This post originally posted here Daily Express

The Beatles and Freddie Mercury’s Queen top most influential UK bands and solo artists

The Beatles and Freddie Mercury's Queen top most influential UK bands and solo artists

During the 20th century, the UK has produced some of the most popular and impactful musicians in the world. And now new research has found the Top 10 most influential British bands and solo artists based on how much tracks are sampled, covered and remixed in commercially released songs. It should come as little surprise that The Beatles, the world’s most successful musicians of all time, came out on top by a long way.

According to 888’s analysis, The Beatles’ music has been used an incredible 11289 times in remixes, covers and samples.

The Fab Four’s most influential songs in the ranking were Yesterday, Something and I Saw Her Standing There.

While Freddie Mercury’s Queen came second much further down on 1323.

Here are the full Top 10 most influential bands and solo artists in the UK and the number of times they have influenced other songs:

The UK’s Top 10 musicians to listen to while driving:

1. Queen – 4.7%
2. Ed Sheeran – 2.7%
3. ABBA – 2.5%
4. Little Mix – 2%
5. Coldplay – 1.7%
6. The Beatles – 1.7%
7. Oasis – 1.6%
8. The Eagles – 1.6%
9. Fleetwood Mac – 1.5%
10. AC/DC – 1.5%

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This post originally posted here Daily Express

Brian May on if Freddie Mercury would still be performing with Queen today

Brian May on if Freddie Mercury would still be performing with Queen today

This year marks the 50th anniversary of Queen, one of Britain’s best-loved rock bands. But 2021 also sadly marks 30 years since Freddie Mercury died. Now in a new interview, Brian May has shared his thoughts on if the Queen singer would still be performing with the band today had he lived.

Speaking to Simon Mayo on Greatest Hit Radio, Brian said: “I think if Freddie had been around now, we would still be doing it together I’m sure.

“And he would still be saying ‘Oh I need to do my solo stuff’, but he would be coming back to the family to do what we do.”

The 73-year-old also admitted how Freddie still has a lasting impact on him to this day.

The Queen guitarist said: “The funny thing is I feel more and more that he is kind of with us in a way.”

Brian added: “Maybe I’m getting to be an old romantic, but Freddie is in my day every day.

“He’s always in my thoughts and I can always feel what he’d say in a certain situation.

“Oh what would Freddie think? Ah he’d like this, he’d laugh at this or whatever. He’s so much part of the legacy we created, that will always be the case.”

While the Queen guitarist really misses his bandmate, he looks back fondly at all that Freddie achieved in his short life.

On the importance of listening to Queen’s albums in sequence, Brian said: “You’re absolutely right, that’s kind of got washed away these days with shuffle.

“Every album we ever made, including the hits albums, we thought yeah people are going to be putting this on their turntables, as it was at the time, and they will be listening to it in sequence.

“We wanted to give them a journey and the tracks have to work in sequence. Thank you for bringing that up, I hope people will listen to it in full.”

Earlier this summer, Express.co.uk asked Queen drummer Roger Taylor if Freddie would be performing with the band today and he agreed with Brian.

Roger said he likes to think that Freddie would still be with the band and have an attitude of “if it’s still working, keep going!”

The Queen drummer added: “It would have been fascinating to see, had he lived, what we’d have been up to.

“Whether we’d still be together…I like to think that we would be. We were pretty close as a unit and we never did break up.”

Greatest Hits Radio can be listened to online here.

Author: George Simpson
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Brian May on Freddie Mercury’s ‘very private side’ and how he faced up to his insecurities

Brian May on Freddie Mercury’s ‘very private side’ and how he faced up to his insecurities

Brian continued: “And if you peeled of all the layers of the onion, you’d find a lot of complexity, a lot of it which he denied, which is smart I think really.

“People would say is your music important Freddie and he would say, ‘No, no it’s just tomorrow’s Fish and Chips paper. No I don’t think my songs are worth anything.’”

However, the Queen guitarist shared that underneath that, of course, Freddie felt he had stuff to say through his lyrics.

He added: “Freddie was always expressing himself in rather daring ways, inside is this rather insecure person and on the outside was a warrior that he was building himself into.”

Author: George Simpson
This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Entertainment Feed

Queen John Deacon: The beautiful song he wrote for his wife and clashed with Freddie over

Queen John Deacon: The beautiful song he wrote for his wife and clashed with Freddie over

John wrote the song for his new wife Veronica Tetzlaff, who he had married in January 1975. It is unashamedly romantic, dedicated to a woman he tells, “You make me live” and “You’re all I see”.

John’s love for Veronica and desire to buy a family home had actually just precipated the band’s split from their previous management.

Freddie said: “We had best-selling albums but we were still living in crummy basement flats on fifty pounds a week.”

Apparently, the breaking point was when John wanted an advance to buy a house. When he was denied the band decided to break their contract.

Astonishingly, this only happened in 1975, in a very acrimonious split just before the release of A Night At The Opera album. After that, John became the main financial and business adviser for the band in the subsequent period, and still played an important role after John Reid came in as their new manager.

Freddie said; “John Deacon kept a very close eye on all our business affairs. He knew everything that should and shouldn’t be going on.

“If God had forsaken us, the rest of the group wouldn’t do anything unless John said it was alright.”

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Entertainment Feed

Dan Walker in brutal Freddie Mercury jibe about Louise Minchin’s outfit on BBC Breakfast 

Dan Walker in brutal Freddie Mercury jibe about Louise Minchin’s outfit on BBC Breakfast 
Dan Walker, 43, appeared to not be a fan of BBC Breakfast co-host Louise Minchin’s bright yellow jumper, as he hilariously said it resembled that of Queen frontman Freddie Mercury. The former Football Focus presenter shared a snap of him and the marathon runner on the sofa together, before making the unlikely comparison in view of his 710,700 followers.
Louise beamed in her bold knit as she posed for a selfie with Dan.

He then savagely posted the photo alongside a picture of Freddie performing in one of his eccentric outfits, which also included a yellow jacket with silver buckles.

Underneath the 43-year-old TV host typed: “Who wore it better? #BBCBreakfast.”

In response, fans took to the comment section to give their opinion over the “weird” comparison.

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However, over the weekend, the TV personality revealed he had found himself in the doghouse following his date night with Sarah.

Taking to his social media pages, the 44-year-old confessed his spouse has banned him from suggesting movies for the next six months after poorly picking action film Tenet.

“Just watched #Tenet with Mrs Walker… or at least we think we did!

“I have no idea what it was about,” the presenter added.

 “My wife has banned me from making film suggestions for at least six months.”

Dan has been married to Sarah since 2001 and the couple have three children together.

The pair are believed to have met while studying at the University of Sheffield, where Dan graduated with a Masters degree in broadcast journalism in 1999.

Now, the couple continue to live in the city with their three children: son Joe, and two daughters Susanna and Jessica.

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Celebrity News Feed

Freddie Mercury's Queen early days ‘People didn't know what to make of him’ – Roger Taylor

Freddie Mercury's Queen early days ‘People didn't know what to make of him’ – Roger Taylor
It was over 50 years ago that Freddie Mercury, then still going by Freddie Bulsara, joined Brian May and Roger Taylor’s proto-Queen band Smile. The first time they played with him as singer was at Truro City Hall in Cornwall for a Red Cross event organised by Roger’s mother Winifred. Now in a new interview, the drummer has shared some fond memories of Freddie in Queen’s early days.
Speaking on Spotify podcast Rock This with Allison Hagendorf, Roger admitted: “People did not know what to make of Freddie Mercury.

“He wasn’t completely and utterly fully formed. But y’know we were in our infancy.”

Queen guitarist Brian, who was also on the podcast, remembered Roger’s mother being irritated her son had such long rock star locks saying, “What are you doing and why haven’t you cut your hair?”

Despite her reservations, Roger’s mother put up the band at the Taylor family home.

READ MORE: Freddie Mercury: Rare audio, images from Queen’s first live TV concert

The band would go on to play their first gig known as Queen on July 18, 1970 at Prince Consort Road in London.

On their 50th anniversary this year marking when Deacon joined, Roger said: “I can’t believe…50 years since we started the band, yeah just incredible.

“You think, ‘oh maybe we’ll be going in 18 months’ when you start, but you don’t think 50 years ahead, it’s just extraordinary.”

Sadly Queen and Adam Lambert’s summer tour of the UK and Europe has been postponed to 2022, but there have been a few surprises to mark the band’s milestone.

Queen The Greatest, a mini-documentary series about the band’s half-century, sees weekly episodes premiere on their official YouTube channel at midday on Fridays.

There will be 50 in total to celebrate Queen’s milestone, while last year the band released a live album featuring highlights with Adam Lambert.

Aside from touring, next year marks Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee and we asked Brian May if Queen and Adam Lambert would be up for performing at the concert.

The 73-year-old, who famously played the national anthem on the roof of Buckingham Palace for the monarch’s Golden Jubilee in 2002, replied: “Oh yeah, well that’s a thought. If they invite us, yeah, I don’t see why not!”

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Entertainment Feed

Freddie Mercury's uncompromising attitude to Bohemian Rhapsody shared by Brian May

Freddie Mercury's uncompromising attitude to Bohemian Rhapsody shared by Brian May
This year saw Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody make the incredibly rare RIAA Diamond status in the US, with over 10 million unit sales and stream equivalents. This marked the first time a British band has ever achieved such an award and it’s unbelievable to think how Freddie Mercury, Brian May, Roger Taylor and John Deacon really had to fight for the song to be taken seriously as a single. The Queen singer, who wrote the chart-topping hit, famously said: “Compromise is not in our vocabulary.”
Despite mixed reviews upon release and its six-minute length, Bohemian Rhapsody topped the UK Singles Chart for nine weeks, sold a million copies by the end of January 1976 and is now one of the best-loved rock songs of all time.

But while Freddie was uncompromising on Queen’s music externally, behind-the-scenes he was something of a diplomat and peacemaker between Brian and Roger, who had competitive and creative energy.

Brian shared: “Yeah there’s a lot of truth in that. Roger and I are kind of like brothers.

“There’s a sort of…I would hate to say love-hate relationship, but I’ve said it!”

Brian added: “He was very much the guy who would sort things out and move things forward.”

Roger confirmed: “Yes, he would sort of make us see sense.”

Aside from Queen’s 50th anniversary this year, 2021 also tragically marks 30 years since Freddie’s death.

Speaking with Express.co.uk earlier this year, Brian shared how he’s proud of Queen’s achievements but finds the band’s golden jubilee hard without its frontman.

Brian told us: “Well I’m proud. Of course, we’re proud of what we’ve done and we’re still around. We just kind of didn’t want to harp on it. We just thought, ‘Let’s just celebrate the fact that we’re still creative.’ I think it also…because Freddie’s not here it changes our feelings a little bit. There’s always going to be that little bit of…reticence in a sense.

“I’m very proud of what we do now with Adam [Lambert]. It’s been incredible, the sort of…the re-birth and response we’ve had around the world. And it’s great that we can own our own legacy, own our own material and keep it alive rather than it being a museum piece or fossil.

“So Queen music is very much alive thanks to that fact and that’s what we’re celebrating. The fact that we’re proud and we’re still able to come up with a few surprises here and there.”

After two postponements due to the pandemic, Queen and Adam Lambert will tour the UK and Europe in summer 2022.

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Entertainment Feed

Freddie Mercury's fabulously rude tribute to the last woman he loved after Mary

Freddie Mercury's fabulously rude tribute to the last woman he loved after Mary
In the back sleeve credits for Freddie’s 1985 solo album Mr Bad Guy there are fantastic glimpses into his personal life. Most famously he dedicated the album to “my cat Jerry – also Tom, Oscar and Tiffany and all the cat lovers across the universe – screw everybody else!” However there is also a fantastic message for Barbara who he brazenly thanks for “big t*ts and misconduct.” Who was this extarordinary woman who captured Freddie’s heart?
In the outrageous Queen video for It’s A Hard Life, Freddie looks up to the voluptuous woman leaning over the balcony above him and sings: “Two lovers together, to love and live forever in each other’s hearts.”

This wasn’t a stunt or a video play-acting. The woman was Barbara Valentin and her daughter says Freddie was “the love of her life.”

They remained devoted for years and Barbara sat at Freddie’s side at his final birthday party, with Mary on the other side.

READ MORE: Freddie Mercury’s cats: Beautiful final picture of Queen star shows them all together in bed 

The video was filmed in June 1984 at Arri Film studios in Munich. The band had recorded much of the 1984 album The Works there as well as previous album, 1982’s Hot Space. 

Since 1979, Freddie had been so taken with the German nightlife and his freedom from the invasive British press that he increasingly spent much of his free time there. It culminated in the years 1983-5 when he put down roots and bought a flat with Barbara.

Freddie’s PA and close friend Peter Freestone said: “They had the most intense, loving relationship. I know one hundred percent they shared a bed on numerous occasions.”

SCROLL DOWN FOR A VIDEO GALLERY OF FREDDIE AND BARBARA TOGETHER

Even Barbara’s daughter Minki Reichardt said: “I know they were in love. I know that my mother was in love with him because she said so.

“I think their relationship was very close and very intense. They really liked the conflict. They were talking, shouting, arguing, and then they were in their arms again, it was always very lively. I think Freddie was the love of her life.”

Barbara’s German friend Elisabeth Volkmann went even further:  “Freddie loved Barbara. Barbara loved him. And it was a big love between both. If he wouldn’t be homosexual, maybe they are married.”

During the final years in Germany Freddie also met local Austrian restauranteur Winnie Kirchberger. Their tumultuous relationship lasted two passionate years – despite the fact that neither spoke the other’s language.

On the Mr Bad Guy credits, Freddie teasingly thanks Winnie “for board and lodging.”

Whatever her feelings for Freddie, Barbara was under no illusion about his sexuality. Like Mary before her, Barbara loved and supported Freddie and, in this case, provided even more vital and personal help to the men’s relationship. 

Freestone said: “it was sometimes comical to watch the arguments happening… Both Freddie and Winnie would be screaming at Barbara who had to do her best to try to sort out the jumbled emotions.”

Freddie did spend some nights at Barbara’s apartment on Stollberg Strasse above the Oyster Cellar. But the Queen star never lived in the apartment he bought with her on Hans Sachs Strasse. He returned to England for good in 1985 before Barbara actually moved in, so he never actually spent a night there.

As for their nights together, Freestone said: “I wasn’t sitting in the room (so) I can’t tell you yes or no if sex happened. If it had, Freddie could not have been quiet about it.”

Either way, the couple remained close for the rest of the rock star’s life and Barbara flew to England for one final special occasion.

In September 1990, Freddie threw his last ever birthday bash. The following year he would be far too ill.

His close friend Dave Clarke, who was the man by his side when he died, recalled a very intimate night, filled with those Freddie loved most, including Barbara.

Clarke said: “On his last birthday, he just invited 30 of his closest friends and there were 30 different courses, done by his personal chef, Joe Fanelli, and 30 different types of wine to go with each course.”

Barbara herself passed away from a stroke on February 22, 2002.

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Entertainment Feed