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Music Major 18

written by John Kercher

The origins of Queen lie in the colledge based band 'Smile' formed by Brian May and Roger Taylor who were later joined by Freddie and then John Deacon who was recruited by an advertisement the others had stuck on the noticeboad.

[p5](About South America Tour)
"We had had a tough job convincing the authorities that we could really put on those concerts," says John Deacon. "In the past there had been many groups which had made promises to put on concerts and they'd turned out to be a shambles. So the South Americans were wondering how on earth we could play to audiences of 250,000 and be certain that they could all hear. That was really what took so long in putting the whole thing together."

"In Argentina we were wined and dined by the then Government," says John, "and treated like Royalty. And when we left the concerts we had to escape in armoured trucks for our safety."

Some years later, Queen rerurned to Brazil for the Rock In Rio Festival and created a sensation. But it was their appearance at the Live Aid show which really affected both audience and group alike. John Deacon says: "Live Aid turned our world upside down. Before it we'd promised ourselves a good long rest. But the band was rejuvenated by that wonderful day; it breathed new life into us. Now we're bursting with enthusiasm and ideas. There's so much that we want to do, it's hard for us to find the right order."

The album A Kind Of Magic includes tracks which were written by the group for the film Highlander which stars Sean Connery and Christopher Lambert. Deacon says of this venture: "Working as a group on a film is not easy because there's only so much room to put songs together with atmospheric music. It's difficult to get songs into films as a lyrical thing, unless it's some sort of modern film where you just use contemporary music going along in the background. Highlander was nothing like that. It's a complex film, full of ideas which are quite difficult to convey."

Deacon says of Queen's composing abilities: "It's not a band where one person writes all the songs and the rest are solely musicians. We all write and contribute ideas. There's a level of quality control before you can even present a song to the others. We all know that we have a high standard to live up to!"

Looking back over their career Deacon observes: "For the first ten years of our career, we were committed pretty much 24 hours a day to Queen. We used to record, tour, drink and think band. We had to slow down a little, to have some breathing space away from each other. A few years ago if bands started doing solo projects, it often led to splitting up, but we seem to have overcome that, and take an interest in what everyone else is doing." So Deacon opened his own 24 track studio, whilst Freddie did a solo album and Brian May went on to design and build a new guitar. Taylor also went into producing albums for other artists. So the core of Queen remained whilst all of these ongoing projects proliferated as solo activities.

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