Why You Should Listen To Queen
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Why You Should Listen To Queen

They're the British rock band that took over the world.

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Why You Should Listen To Queen
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You've probably heard a Queen song before. I mean, who hasn't heard "We Will Rock You" and "We Are the Champions." "Bohemian Rhapsody" is that interesting piece with the awesome music video. "Somebody to Love" was in a Honda Super Bowl ad this year. Maybe you've heard one that I didn't list. Queen is a British rock band that was active primarily from 1970 to 1995. They helped to popularize a sub-genre of rock and roll called "arena rock," which is meant to fill stadiums in large concerts. The band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2001. If you haven't heard a Queen song or don't listen to them, here is why I think that you should.


1. Freddie Mercury

He is the lead singer of Queen. Freddie Mercury made Queen. He was born Farrokh Bulsara in Zanzibar, but moved to England and became Freddie Mercury when he joined Queen. His vocal range is one of the most impressive of all time. He wrote many songs and plays piano for Queen as well. His on-stage persona was larger than life, becoming one of the best front men in rock history. He drank beer on stage and got away with it. His mustache was pretty cool. He was also gay, which, unfortunately, led to his 1991 death due to AIDS, but he continued to record music until his death. He is an immortal legend.


2. Brian May

Brian was a founding member of Queen. The two coolest things about him are his hair and his guitar. I mean, who wouldn't want a flowing mane like that? Queen's music also would not be the same without his guitar skills. Just listen to some of his riffs and solos. The sound is unique to May and Queen not only due to his skill, but because he and his father built his guitar when May was a teenager. Can you build a guitar? He also helped to write Queen songs and has a great voice, despite mostly being a backing vocalist. He also has a PhD in astrophysics, so he's pretty smart.


3. Roger Taylor and John Deacon

These two round up the classic Queen line-up. Taylor was the other founding member of the band and the drummer. Roger, with Brian and Freddie, was a key songwriter. He and Brian continue to play with the Queen moniker today. John Deacon was the soft-spoken and quiet member of the group. The last to join, John was still key for the band as the bassist. He wrote very few songs, but Queen would not be the same without him. He came up with two of the best bass lines of all-time for the songs "Another One Bites the Dust" and "Under Pressure." He retired after 1997, five years after Freddie died, and he is one of the most underrated bassists ever.


4. "Bohemian Rhapsody"

This is the song that made Queen into a legend. It's a song about the guilt of killing a man. It has no chorus, but that just makes it better. Between Mercury's lyrics and delivery, May's guitar solos and the backing vocals that are meant to sound like an English choir, it is a song that has stood the test of time. It's one of the best rock songs of all time and their music video is also something to go and check out.


5. "Somebody to Love"

This song is my personal Queen favorite. Before the Beebs had a song with the same name, Queen had their song. It's a song about almost giving up on God in a search for finding love. Its lyrics are beautiful and Mercury delivers them perfectly. It's meant to blend rock and gospel. The gospel choir in the background is actually the beautifully blended voices of Mercury, May, and Taylor that are meant to sound like a hundred or so voices. May also has a killer solo in the song. It's a song that can and will bring you to tears.


6. "We Will Rock You" and "We Are the Champions"

These two songs are often heard back to back on the radio, so we'll group them together here. "We Will Rock You" is a great song about beating someone. It's the instantly recognizable stomp-stomp-clap that gets people pumped up and ready to go. There are no instruments until the awesome May guitar solo at the end of the song. After the end, it transitions into quieter "We Are the Champions." It's a song about defying the odds to win it all. I mean, you've probably heard it after winning a sports championship. The songs work perfectly together and are two of Queen's best and most recognizable.


7. "Under Pressure"

You might recognize John Deacon's bass line from Vanilla Ice's "Ice Ice Baby." Well, Vanilla Ice actually stole it from this song because it was so awesome. Queen recruited the help of the late David Bowie for this song. It's another great song about not giving into the pressures of society, but many don't recognize it anymore. Thanks, Vanilla Ice. If you want another legendary Queen bassline after this, "Another One Bites the Dust" is the way to go.


8. Every Single Song in Queen's Catalog

Queen has some great singles. Some, like "Crazy Little Thing Called Love," "Don't Stop Me Now," and "Fat Bottomed Girls," are fun, catchy, and upbeat. Others have deeper meanings like "Radio Ga Ga," "Innuendo," and "These Are the Days of Our Lives." My suggestion is to listen to a Queen's Greatest Hits album or two to truly discover everything that they have to offer.


9. They Rocked Live

Watch Queen live. They filled arenas and stadiums and killed it. The entire band electrified the crowd. The best example is the Live Aid Concert in 1985, where the band performed for only 20 minutes, but managed to almost have the 72,000 in attendance eating out of their hands. Another great example is the Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert, where the band performed with various artist to honor the life of Freddie Mercury. Definitely check out "Somebody to Love" with George Michael from that concert.


10. A Unique Overall Sound

Queen's sound, in general, is unlike others. Freddie Mercury had vocals that are unmatched by any other male artist. He also played the piano nicely when he wanted to. Brian May's one of a kind guitar made for a unique sound when combined with his skill. Roger Taylor is a great drummer and provided some great backing vocals with May. Finally, John Deacon wraps it all up with a great bass, even if he isn't a guy who most people remember.


11. Try Something New

You may think that this is a band that you aren't interested in because it's the music of your parents. To me, music can stand the test of time. If you haven't heard Queen before or have only heard a few of their better known songs, go out and listen. You could end up liking something that you never thought that you'd like before.

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