The Life of Freddy Mercury

  • A Legend is born

    A Legend is born
    Singer-songwriter Freddy Mercury, best known as one of the rock world's most versatile and engaging performers and as the iconic vocalist and frontman of the group Queen, was born Farrokh Bulsara in 1946 in Stone Town, Zanzibar. Mercury was born with four extra teeth in the back of his mouth, causing his now-famous bucktooth grin. In fact, his nickname growing up was Bucky. Mercury never got his teeth fixed because he was afraid it would ruin his vocals.
  • Childhood and first school years

     Childhood and first school years
    When Farrokh was 6, his family moved to Bombay and the boy was sent to boarding school in Panchgani, 150km far from Bombay. At school, his English-speaking classmates started calling him “Freddie.” Freddie was a diligent student. Soon, he became passionate about sports, such as hockey, tennis, and boxing; he was also interested in music and painting. However, it was singing that Farrukh really loved. From a really young age, he studied piano.
  • First steps in music

    First steps in music
    At 12, Freddie and his friends started a rock group called 'The Hectics'. The boys played and sang at school discos and everywhere they were welcome.
  • Graduation from school

    When he was 16, he finished school in India, marked as the best student, and came back to Zanzibar; his parents also moved there.
  • The family moves to London

    The family moves to London
  • Freddy attends Ealing Art College

    Freddy attends Ealing Art College
    In 1965, Freddy became a student of the prestigious college Ealing where he studied painting and design and continued his music and ballet lessons. During his studies there, together with his friend and musician Chris Smith,he rented an apartment in Kensington. At this time, he also met his college peer Tim Staffel who was the leader of the group Smile. He began to visit the group’s rehearsals, with the drummer Roger Taylor, he got on particularly well and even moved to his place for a while.
  • First year after college

    First year after college
    Having finished college in 1969, 23-year-old Freddie received his graphic designer diploma.Taylor and he opened a small shop where, among other commodities, Bulsara’s works were sold.
  • Bands before Queen

    Bands before Queen
    In the same year, Freddie met the musicians of the group Ibex from Liverpool. With Ibex, he went for his first ever concert within the blues festival in Bolton. However, the band quickly separated. After Ibex had broken up, Freddie, who couldn’t imagine his further life without music, found a new group in a newspaper called Sour Milk Sea. He was accepted at once when the group members saw his talent. Freddie’s movements were excellent, and his four-octave voice range attracted everyone.
  • Mary Austin

    Mary Austin
    In 1969, Freddie Mercury met Mary Austin, the closest person in his life. After seven years of living together, they split up, Freddie came out as a bisexual. However, they preserved their friendship and closeness to his death. Freddy dedicated the song “Love of my Life” to her. Freddy later became the godfather of her older son, Richard. She was the woman that owned his heart.
  • Queen is born

    Queen is born
    In 1970, replacing his former schoolfellow, Freddie joined the members of the youth rock band, «Smile», Roger Taylor and Brian May. A year later they were joined by bass guitarist John Deacon. Finally, Queen, the soon to be legendary rock band, was born. Freddie, who had exceptional drawing skills, designed the group's emblem with the letter Q in the middle and the Zodiac signs of the four band members around it.
  • He changes his name to Freddy Mercury

  • The album 'Queen' comes out

    The album 'Queen' comes out
    In 1973, the band released their first album called 'Queen', which became popular overnight. The high-quality stadium rock and the variety of genres which the musicians worked in evoked delight among listeners.
  • The song 'Killer Queen' becomes a hit

    The song 'Killer Queen' becomes a hit
    In 1974, “Killer Queen”, the first hit song of Queen, from the album 'Sheer Heart Attack' is released. The same year, the band performed the song at the popular BBC show, Top of the Pops.
  • 'A Night At The Opera'

    'A Night At The Opera'
    With a sound that has been described as a fusion of hard rock and glam rock, Queen had an even bigger hit the following year with their album, A Night at the Opera (1975).
  • 'Love of my Life'

    'Love of my Life'
    One of the most successful songs in 'A Night At The Opera' was the romantic ballad 'Love of my Life', written by Freddy Mercury and dedicated to Mary Austin.
  • 'Bohemian Rhapsody'

    'Bohemian Rhapsody'
    Mercury wrote the song "Bohemian Rhapsody," a seven-minute rock operetta, for 'A Night At The Opera' . Mercury showed off his impressive four-octave vocal range on this innovative track. The song hit number 1 in Britain and remained there for 9 weeks and became a Top 10 hit in the United States. The most interesting thing about the song is that although it was the biggest hit of the millennium, no one except the members of Queen know what its complicated lyrics mean.
  • The band toured Japan

    In 1975, the group was touring around Japan. It was not their first time touring abroad. However, such an overwhelming success something new for the band. During this tour, Freddie Mercury fell in love in the land of the rising sun and started collecting pieces of Japanese art.
  • 'We will rock you'

    'We will rock you'
    'We will rock you', was a song from the album 'News of the World'. It was created because Queen wanted to give the audience a song they could perform themselves. That's why they don't use instruments at all.
  • 'We are the Champions'

    'We are the Champions'
    'We are the Champions' was a song that became an anthem of sporting events and Olympic Game winners, from the album 'News of the World'
  • Performance with the Royal Ballet

    Performance with the Royal Ballet
    In October 1979, Freddy' dream came true: with his song hits “Bohemian Rhapsody” and “Crazy Little Thing Called Love,” he performed with the Royal Ballet. Next year, Freddie changed his image significantly: for the first time, he got a short haircut.
  • 'Another One Bites The Dust'

    'Another One Bites The Dust'
  • 'Under Pressure' with David Bowie

    'Under Pressure' with David Bowie
    In 1981, the members of Queen collaborated with David Bowie to create "Under Pressure." Bowie was a close friend of Mercury since before he was in the music industry. The song became a No. 1 hit in Britain especially because of its distinctive bass line.
  • 'The Works'

    'The Works'
    In 1984, Queen released another great album called 'The Works'. In this album, the band released a song named 'I Want to Break Free'. The song is widely known because of its music video, in which the four members of Queen dressed like women and passed a message against oppression.
  • Solo Albums

    Solo Albums
    Mercury didn’t limit himself working with the band, he did solo records. His single «Love Kills» as well as the album «Mr. Bad Guy» (1985), which he dedicated to his cats were in the top ten.
  • Jim Hutton

    Jim Hutton
    In 1985 Freddie started a relationship with hairdresser Jim Hutton which lasted till his death. Hutton nursed him till the end of his days and later wrote a book named «Mercury and Me».
  • Live Aid

    Live Aid
    July 13, 1985 is a genuine peak of Mercury’s and Queen’s musical career. The group took part in the grand show at Wembley Stadium, called 'Live Aid', where many other stars were also on the stage. However, it was Mercury’s performance that was unanimously acknowledged as the highlight of the program. During Queen’s show, the 75-thousand crowd felt euphoric, and Freddie became a rock legend. Simply dressed in a tank top and jeans, he led the crowd through some of the band's greatest hits.
  • 'The Magic Tour'

    'The Magic Tour'
    In 1986, the band had their last tour called “Magic Tour” when the last shows with Freddie Mercury were held. This time, 120 thousand fans gathered at Wembley Stadium. The tour finished in Knebworth. Since then, Mercury never gave performances with Queen
  • 'Barcelona'

    'Barcelona'
    In spring 1987, Freddie and his idol, opera singer, Montserrat Caballe, began their work on the joint album “Barcelona” which was released in October 1988. At that time, the singer and the opera star’s joint concert took place. It was the last performance of the legend.
  • HIV/AIDS

    The rumors about Mercury’s disease started in 1986. In 1989, the disturbing rumors that Mercury was trying to deny till the end, were confirmed. Freddie lost much weight, with his haggard look as the most reliable evidence of his terrible illness. In that period, Mercury was working hard with his last bits of strength, he realized he had to do so much before it was too late. He recorded the songs for two next albums, “The Miracle” and “Innuendo”.
  • The Brit Awards

    The Brit Awards
    By 1990, Mercury was gaunt, sickly, and clearly not himself. His final public appearance was at the Brit Awards, when Queen accepted the award for Outstanding Contribution to British Music. The acceptance speech was given not by Mercury, as everyone expected, but by May. Mercury only said "Thank you … good night", just before the band left the stage.
  • Death

    On November 1991, Mercury’s official statement concerning his disease – AIDS – appeared. The next day, November 24, Freddie died of bronchopneumonia caused by HIV infection. His body was cremated, only the nearest were present at the at the funeral. Mary Austin, Freddy's 'love of his life',is the only person that knows where Mercury’s ashes were buried.
  • The Mercury Phoenix Trust

    The Mercury Phoenix Trust
    After his death, Brian May, Roger Taylor, and band manager Jim Beach formed the Mercury Phoenix Trust in Freddie Mercury's memory. The organization raises money for HIV/AIDS initiatives all over the world. According to its website, since it was established in 1992 it has raised more than $16 million for more than 700 HIV/AIDS-related projects. Freddie Mercury's legacy and memory have contributed significantly to the worldwide battle against the illness.
  • The 'Bohemian Rhapsody' Movie

    The 'Bohemian Rhapsody' Movie
    The «Bohemian Rhapsody» film directed by Bryan Singer, tells the story of the musical band and the tragic life of Freddy Mercury. The legendary singer is portrayed by talented actor, Rami Malek.