Is This the Real Life?: The Untold Story of Queen

Is This the Real Life?: The Untold Story of Queen

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by Mark Blake
     
 

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Queen is unique among the great rock bands. It's been nearly 20 years since frontman Freddie Mercury's death brought the band to an end, yet their fan base remains massive, they appeal equally to men and women, and their fans are just as likely to be teenagers too young to have been born when the band were still touring and making records (thanks not

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Overview

Queen is unique among the great rock bands. It's been nearly 20 years since frontman Freddie Mercury's death brought the band to an end, yet their fan base remains massive, they appeal equally to men and women, and their fans are just as likely to be teenagers too young to have been born when the band were still touring and making records (thanks not least to the huge success of the musical We Will Rock You). Their musical history is one of constant reinvention—from heavy metal and prog rock to disco pop, stadium anthems, and even jazz influences. Now, having already interviewed the surviving band members over the years, Mojo journalist Mark Blake has tracked down dozens of new interviewees, from long-forgotten early bass players to Freddie Mercury's schoolmates, to deliver the definitive history of the band. He traces Queen's long career from their very first gawky performances in St. Helens, Merseyside through their sensational stage-stealing appearance on Live Aid to the band's collaboration with Paul Rodgers at the beginning of the century. Full of fascinating new revelations—especially about the improbable transformation of a shy Indian schoolboy called Bulsara into the outrageous-living hedonist that was Freddie Mercury—this is a book every Queen fan will want.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'Richly detailed biography...draws on extensive interviews' - Daily Telegraph

'Mark Blake matches the detail of his Pink Floyd book with a fluid, muscular narration of the band's rise. Crucially, he interviews the key players (which the other biographies don't.)' - Classic Rock magazine

'Presents the whole, splendid saga...sparkling anecdotes throughout.' - Mojo

'Genuinely adds to the fund of knowledge about this truly unique band.' - Record Collector

'Includes a highly interesting section on their origins...a well-researched account...A good choice for both Queen experts and more lightweight fans.' - Sunday Business Post

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781845137137
Publisher:
Aurum Press
Publication date:
09/28/2011
Pages:
410
Sales rank:
872,084

Meet the Author

Mark Blake is a former assistant editor of Q magazine and a long-time contributor to Mojo. He is the author of the definitive Pink Floyd biography, Pigs Might Fly: The Inside Story of Pink Floyd, as well as Is This the Real Life? The Untold Story of Queen, and edited Stone Me: The Wit & Wisdom of Keith Richards (all published by Aurum). He is also the editor of Dylan: Visions, Portraits & Back Pages and Punk: The Whole Story. He lives in London with his wife and son.

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Is This the Real Life?: The Untold Story of Queen 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
foultips More than 1 year ago
Let's start by stating that Queen was my favorite music group while I was growing up and it is still my favorite as I grow wiser ... The beginning of the book, when we start meeting Farrokh (Fred) Bulsara, Brian May and Roger Taylor is fascinating. Who they were, where they came from, how they got initiated in music and what they all had in common: a devotion to Jimi Hendrix. Three failed bassist later John Deacon enters stage. The process in which they met and ended up together becomes a little bit tedious because the author mentions all the groups they all were in and all their members and all the internal politics in each one. Of course it is an essential part of the story but unless you are an expert on the English rock scene of the late 60s, you will be lost ... If you want to know how Freddie got his trademark half-mike stand in his hand, this book will even tell you that. If you wanted to know the play-by-play of the creation, recording and explosion of Bohemian Rhapsody, this is the book for you ... The author goes record by record on Queen's discography and very clearly shows how they slowly went through the process from a small band opening for big acts to the biggest band of their times. Their transition from a rock group topping the charts to a pop group capturing new audiences, annoying old fans, attracting a new generation and still managing to top the charts ... Each one of the members is very clearly described and despite the whole being more than the sum of the parts, it is undeniable that everything gravitated around Freddie Mercury ... This book is targeted to a very defined segment of readers: Queen fans. If you loved them, you'll enjoy it and you won't regret investing your time savoring each record, each song, each concert, and each anecdote, just us as much as I did ... You can read more at my blog at LectumErgoSum dot com.