22 August, 2010

Reviewing my collection, part 4

From grades 6-12, I was a choir geek, and there was an unspoken rivalry between choir and band/orchestra geeks. So my exposure to classical music has been almost nil. Not just because band geeks may as well have been a different species, but my attention span cannot handle listening to long, orchestral pieces no matter how beautifully done. There are a few exceptions (GF Handel's Messiah holds a special place in my heart), but I think it's safe to say that it just generally isn't my thing.

That having been said, I purchased The Queen Collection by The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. And really, it isn't bad, but I've maybe only listened to it twice.

The Queen Symphony by Tolga Kashif, however, is totally amazing! I mean, Brian and Roger just handed this guy the ENTIRE QUEEN CATALOGUE and let him do whatever he wanted! And he did fucking amazing things with it! Keep in mind I do not like classical music! But holy shit! My favorite part is in the third movement, the violin solo for Who Wants To Live Forever. It's just so beautifully done that I can't accurately describe it.

I also don't consider myself a fan of opera. But being a Freddie fan, I did add Barcelona to my collection (the first copy was a gift from a friend in KS, USA. The second came part of the Solo CD Collection I got for Christmas some years ago). But yes, this album is beautiful, too. Having read Peter Freestone's book, [SPOILER ALERT] knowing that Freddie was sure this would be his last musical contribution to the world helped make it the fucking brilliant album it is. And Montserrat Caballe` has a fantastic voice and I have much respect for her. But even so, I'm not an opera fan. I'm pretty sure I'm the only person who's ever seen the movie Philadelphia and not cried while Tom Hanks cried over the opera he was listening to.

I think what makes Barcelona so accessible to me is not that Freddie thought he was going to kick the bucket sooner than he actually did, but that it's formatted like a pop album (read: The tracks aren't each 20 minutes long, or whatever). And also! Freddie managed to combine opera, pop and gospel! That's too badass for words! I mean that with all sincerity! The Golden Boy is my favorite track on the album!

And speaking of Freddie, if you can, I think it would rock if you could donate to The Mercury Phoenix Trust or participate in Freddie For A Day (September 3 this year). Since his birthday is coming up and all... But hey, no pressure.

16 August, 2010

I'm sure you already know about this, but...

... it's my blog, I'll post what I want and you will LIKE IT! Or, you'll scroll past it. Either way.

I'm really into cracked.com lately, and this hilarious article on Freddie Mercury is just so fucking awesome. I think the best thing about it is a fake quote, "My mustache gets me all kinds of tail. And I don't even want it!"

Yeah, there's snark and satire and really dumb jokes, but there's love there! And the writers took the time to look up and point out really interesting shit that, in all actuality, is not shit. I just like to swear.

And for those of you raging and foaming at the mouth, you may as well chill out. Freddie picked on himself a lot ("If I still had the hair and fingernails, and wearing all those things I'd look ridiculous. I mean, I looked ridiculous then, but it worked!" - horribly paraphrased quote)

And considering there are pictures of him wearing red and white-striped hot pants with red suspenders, odds are he didn't really take himself too seriously.

See also his outfit for the It's A Hard Life video. The outfit doesn't bother me so much - although let's be real, the eyes are very disturbing - it's always that fucking wig that kills me.

But also, he's Freddie Mercury. Do you really think he'd give a fuck if some comedic website jokingly associated him with crabs? He'd probably just be surprised they didn't make fun of his teeth.

15 August, 2010

... *blink*

Typically when I have nothing to write, but feel an intense need to post here, I look to the Queenzone forums for inspiration (which isn't a big secret). I may have found something good.

Someone posted asking for the names of Kashmira Cooke's (Freddie's sister) children. I know she has a son and daughter (did you see what I did there with the song title subtly placed in the sentence? DAMN I'M GOOD!), not that it's common knowledge, but it isn't hard to find out either.

Anyway, someone commented that Kashmira's son looks like Freddie, and another person responded in kind:

OH MY GOSH!!!!! HOW OLD IS HE? WHERE IS HE? IS HE SINGLE?????????????????????????? I MUST HAVE HIM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I call dibs on him! EVERYONE ELSE BACK OFF!!!!!!!!


Uhhh... right. Because that's a totally reasonable reaction. Because Freddie's whole family looks like Freddie.

The woman in front on the left is Kashmira, the older woman on the right is Freddie's mother Jer Bulsara. The guy cut off in the corner was Freddie's personal assistant (1979-1991) Peter "Phoebe" Freestone. I don't know who the rest of the people are. I'm assuming they're just Queen fans.

And that forum thread I'm referencing just goes on like that. Here's another quote from a different person:

I think he is 20-25 or something.. So that means, that if he has long hair.. HE MIGHT LOOK LIKE FREDDIE AT ART SCHOOL!!
OMG, I HAVE to kidnap this guy :D

... Moving on, then!

Right, there was a point to this wasn't there? Oh yeah! Freddie is awesome. Stalking his family is not. Even if Freddie is the coolest person who's ever lived.

09 August, 2010

Knebworth '86

24 years ago today, Queen performed their final concert. While the July shows at Wembley Stadium were fucking amazing, I kind of wish someone in charge had chosen to release Knebworth in its entirety instead of the pile of shit that is Live Magic.

Well, okay. I'm being mean. It isn't necessarily shit, but I feel a little insulted when I remember listening to it. I mean, they not only edited out several tracks, but they cut out the mid-section of Bohemian Rhapsody. I know it was only the recording, but still! Not cool!

04 August, 2010

Brian May on NPR

I am unaware if there's a full transcript, but the page has highlights of the interview. He talks about the book he co-wrote A Village Lost And Found, physics, his music career, etc. I fail as a faux-New Englander in that I don't typically like NPR (except David Sedaris. He rocks), but this is surprisingly a really interesting interview.

Check it.

02 August, 2010

*insert catchy title here*

I've got to say that my favorite impressionist ever is Stevie Riks. If you've never heard of him or seen his brilliant work, go on his Youtube page and check him out. Here's my favorite:

Here's the link to the page if the embedding doesn't fit your screen.

He has plenty more where that came from (if Youtube hasn't shut him down yet again for "copyright infringement." It hasn't seemed to occur to them that he's just a really damn good impressionist!) so you should check out his stuff and support him.

If it helps, he does killer impressions of The Beatles and David Bowie