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Innuendo - Queen


Greatest Hits II
rock classic rock Queen hard rock 90s

"Innuendo" was pieced together "like a jigsaw puzzle." The recurring theme (with the Boléro-esque beat) started off as a jam session between May, Deacon and Taylor. Mercury then added the melody and some of the lyrics, which were then completed by Taylor. The middle section was primarily Mercury's work, according to an interview with May in October 1994's Guitar Magazine. It features a flamenco guitar solo, followed by a classically influenced bridge, and then the solo again but performed with electric guitars. This section is especially complex, featuring a pattern of three bars in 5/4 time (reasonably uncommon in popular music) followed by four bars in the more often used 3/4 time. The "You can be anything you want to be" section features a very sophisticated orchestration, created by Mercury and producer David Richards using the popular Korg M1 keyboard/synth/workstation. Mercury had arranged and co-arranged orchestras in his solo career, and closed the previous Queen album with "Was It All Worth It", which included a Gershwin-esque interlude also coming from an M1 synth. The bridge section in "Innuendo" is in 3/4, showing once again Mercury's affection for trinary metres: "Bicycle Race" is another one with main sections in 4/4 and middle-eight in 3/4, and some of his best-known pieces (namely "We Are the Champions" and "Somebody to Love") were in 6/8, as would be his last ever composition, "A Winter's Tale". Steve Howe and Mercury had been friends for several years, since they ran into each other quite often at the Townhouse Studios in London. Yes had been recording at Mountain Studios in 1978 shortly before Queen bought the Swiss studio, and Asia's debut album was produced by Queen's engineer, Mike Stone. Paul Sutin had released his debut album in 1988 and began recording the second. Steve Howe had played on the first as guitarist and bassist, and Sutin asked him to produce the follow-up, which Howe agreed. This time Howe didn't play bass, only guitar and keyboard, but all of the drum parts in 'Voyager' were recorded by his son. Howe travelled to Geneva to lay his parts down in early 1989. On a break he drove to Montreux and stopped to have lunch. There he ran into Martin Gloves (who had worked for Yes before and then was Queen's equipment supervisor), who told him that Queen were in the studio at the moment. As soon as Steve Howe went into the studios, Freddie Mercury asked him to play some guitar (according to producer David Richards, who had worked with Yes in the past as well). Another version is that Brian May was the one who asked him to play the flamenco bit. May admitted in a 1991 interview that he couldn't play the bits Howe recorded.

Queen were an English rock band originally consisting of four members: vocalist Freddie Mercury, guitarist Brian May, bass guitarist John Deacon, and drummer Roger Taylor. The band formed in London in 1970 after May and Taylor's former band Smile split after having released an album and single. Freddie replaced lead vocalist Tim Staffell, after the latter's departure from the original trio. There was much deliberation as to what the band's name would be. Show more ...

Innuendo - Queen

While the sun hangs in the sky and the desert has sand
While the waves crash in the sea and meet the land
While there's a wind and the stars and the rainbow
Till the mountains crumble into the plain
Oh yes well keep on tryin
Tread that fine line
Oh well keep on tryin yeah
Just passing our time
While we live according to race, colour or creed
While we rule by blind madness and pure greed
Our lives dictated by tradition, superstition, false religion
Through the eons, and on and on
Oh yes well keep on tryin
Well tread that fine line
Oh well keep on tryin
Till the end of time
Till the end of time

Through the sorrow all through our splendour
Don't take offence at my innuendo

You can be anything you want to be
Just turn yourself into anything you think that you could ever be
Be free with your tempo, be free be free
Surrender your ego - be free, be free to yourself

Oooh, ooh -
If there's a God or any kind of justice under the sky
If there's a point, if there's a reason to live or die
If there's an answer to the questions we feel bound to ask
Show yourself - destroy our fears - release your mask
Oh yes well keep on trying
Hey tread that fine line
Yeah well keep on smiling yeah
And whatever will be - will be
Well just keep on trying
Well just keep on trying
Till the end of time
Till the end of time
Till the end of time