Tag: Freddie Mercury

“Hope I die before I get old” — Do famous musicians really die young?

“Hope I die before I get old” — Do famous musicians really die young?

Featured Posts, Music, People
With her tragic and untimely death, Amy Winehouse became the latest member of a grim group -- the so-called Club 27, whose only entrance requirement is to be a famous musician and to die at age 27. The club also includes legends such as Jim Morrison, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, and Kurt Cobain. This got me to thinking -- is it really true that the brightest stars burn out the earliest? Or does it just seem that way because of our fascination with stars who die young? Curious, I decided to conduct a little research so I compiled a list of famous and influential dead musicians. Of course that list could be limitless, depending on your standards for fame and influence. I ultimately opted to use Rolling Stone's list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time, first published in 2004/05 and...
10 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Kiss

10 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Kiss

Featured Posts, Music
It's been nearly 40 years since Gene Simmons, Paul Stanley, Ace Frehley, and Peter Criss put greasepaint on their faces and took the stage as Kiss for the first time. Since then they've amassed 24 gold albums in the United States, took the makeup off, got a bunch of new members, put the makeup back on, and toured seemingly in perpetuity. In those four decades a lot of facts, rumors, and myths about Kiss have circulated. Of course the diehard members of the Kiss Army usually know what's what, but for everyone else, here are ten things you probably didn't know about Kiss. 10. Katey Sagal was a backup singer on Gene Simmons' 1978 solo album. Before she gained fame with American television audiences for her portrayals of Peg Bundy (Married... with Children) and later Leela (Fu...
Listening Booth — Queen, “High Voltage” (London 1974)

Listening Booth — Queen, “High Voltage” (London 1974)

Listening Booth, Music
God I miss Freddie Mercury, don't you? Thankfully we have a treasure trove of studio albums, concert videos, and of course bootlegs. Because Freddie was always at his best when he had a crowd in the palm of his hand. This particular crowd watched Queen perform at the Rainbow Theatre in London on March 31, 1974. That's just over three weeks after the release of the awesome Queen II album. This show -- which I acquired with the title High Voltage -- is just seven songs long but is full of energy and great playing by the whole band. Roger Taylor is a beast on the drums, and of course Brian May (who gets his showcase on "Son and Daughter" and busts out a solo that will remind fans of the one on "Brighton Rock") rules at all times. And let's not forget the ever-solid John Deacon on bass. ...
Movies That Defined My Youth, Part 3

Movies That Defined My Youth, Part 3

Movies
Waaaay back in 2007 I looked back at five flicks that made a big impact on me during my formative years. The next year I ran through four more. And today I drag out another five. Let's reminisce! Better Off Dead (1985) — There is not one part of this movie that isn't 100% awesome, even more than 25 years later. This Savage Steve Holland masterpiece was perfectly cast and written, which makes its more surreal vignettes feel like integral parts of the movie instead of just absurd asides. It never really sunk in when I was a kid that this was a pretty dark film. Hell, the lead character (John Cusack as Lane Meyer) spends most of the it trying to kill himself. Over a breakup. Fortunately he fails and gets to see an Eddie Van Halen-esque hamburger wailing a Frankenstrat to "Everybody Wants S
Platters that matter: 20 albums that changed my life (#20-#11)

Platters that matter: 20 albums that changed my life (#20-#11)

Listcruft, Music
Music is - or at least used to be - at once a very shared and a very personal thing.  And truth be told the only thing I've spent more time doing in my life than listening to music is sleeping.  Music has informed my life since I was a kid and continues to do so, although to a lesser degree now that I'm a family man.  So it's time for me to give credit where credit is due, and list the 20 albums that had a bigger impact on me than any others. Some of these records opened my eyes to a new style of music.  Some of them resonated on a deep, emotional level.  Some were just too good to be ignored.  Some are wrapped in nostalgia now and nothing more.  But they are all critical to my development as a music lover in one way or another. #20 - Queen, The Game Memory is a tricky thing, espe
Deep Cuts: Queen

Deep Cuts: Queen

Music
Here's the first in a series of entries dedicated to exploring songs from my favorite groups that don't get a lot of attention. These represent the ten best songs (in no special order) from an act's catalog that were never released as singles, don't get radio play, and are typically appreciated only by hardcore fans. Up first is Queen, for no other reason than they showed up on my iPod today. "In the Lap of the Gods" (Sheer Heart Attack, 1974) - What makes this song great is the completely over-the-top opening and some of Queen's sweetest vocal harmonies ever. Listen to the super-high part - that's drummer Roger Taylor, a key element of the band's vocal presentation. "Football Fight" (Flash Gordon, 1980) - Although not fully fleshed out, this is still a gem of a tune. It features...