The 1990 edition of the classics Brits Awards was marked by the presence of Queen and, in particular, of Freddie Mercury, who had withdrawn from the public eye a couple of months after receiving the news of his illness, which he kept secret until just weeks before his death. The band had not played live for almost four years, although it continued to edit music and on February 18 took the stage to receive the award for “Best Band of the Decade”.
Wearing an oversized suit and layers of makeup, Mercury greeted the crowd, grabbed the award from producer Terry Ellis, turned to the side, and let Brian May speak: “On behalf of the band, I would like to thank the entire industry and, more importantly, people outside of it for staying with us throughout these years.. By doing so, they gave us a lot of freedom to pursue our art and to be able to take strange limits, which seemed precarious at the time, but from which we did not fall and we could get to this moment ”. To the applause, Roger Taylor thanked again and Freddie came over – finally – and just said ‘thank you, good night’.
Mercury attended an after-delivery party and chatted with luminaries like David Gilmour, Rod Stewart, Liza Minnelli and George Michael, who years later would be the great star of the posthumous tribute to the singer. His last photograph shows him sitting inside his car on his way home. A short time later, he would be secluded in his London home, where he would receive medical attention until his death.
“These Are The Days Of Our Lives”, the last clip
Despite the progression of the disease, Freddie Mercury had the intention to produce music until the last day of his life. In February 1991, Queen published Innuendo, his fourteenth studio album and the last in which the singer would participate in life. The publication was a success, reaching number 1 of the charts in England and becoming one of his best-selling albums.
In May, they released the clip of “These Are The Days Of Our Lives”, a song that Roger Taylor had written to his children but that its universal message could be understood as a farewell. That video became the last image of Freddie Mercury. Made up, with little mobility and with the image turned to black and white to nuance his image, he became a symbol of the times and a tribute to his career.
A playlist with great songs by Freddie Mercury
Endowed with an incomparable charisma, he was erected from the mid-70s -with the edition of the brilliant A Night at the Opera– as a multifaceted, dynamic and particularly fragile rock star. Their songs they portrayed obsessions, intellectuality and had the ability to connect with different audiences. His voice -the voice- It touched generations and continues to resonate within a range that seemed limitless.
Summarizing his work in just a couple of songs fails to measure the breadth of his person. Queen’s records became conceptual works that encapsulate every moment of the band; There is no record similar to the previous one and the logic of constant change led to an inordinate (and beautiful) number of hits. The participation of the whole group in the compositions not only broadened the stylistic range but also enlarged it. So with this playlist we wanted to portray the Freddie composer and performer (hence the inclusion of songs he did not write), the magnanimous promoter of multitudinous shouts and the sensitive guy who turns his life upside down in a couple of minutes of a song. Hits, B-sides, and reversions of live classics – with the necessary burst of charisma – this list works as a gateway to a world worth exploring, enjoying, and staying to live. Press play!
(If you can’t see the playlist, click here)