The truth about the unreleased collaborations of the queen and the king of pop is out. The magical duo recorded three songs, but they were never made public. The musicians shared mutual admiration and lasting friendship. Its said that the parallel evolution of their career had a creative impact on each other and influenced them in many ways.
Freddie Mercury was the lead vocalist of an evolutionary rock band named Queen, which was formed in London in 1970. The artist had four-octave vocal range and is known as the greatest singer in the rock music history. And, the versatile Michael Joseph Jackson was regarded as the greatest entertainer and soon became the king of pop. Together, they had plans to make and change the history of music and create something extraordinary.
Freddie had a gift that could transcend genres and was enjoying the extreme level of success when the band released its first album back in 1973. And, Michael tasted the same with one of his best selling albums, Thriller, released in 1982. But, their much-anticipated duets never reached the stage, given Mercury passed away in 1991 due to AIDS and Michael died as he overdosed on a lethal prescription drug in 2009.
Jackson showed up at Queen’s concert and thats how he met Mercury. Lisa Robinson, a music journalist, interviewed Freddie in 1983, where he said, “In the early days, three, four years ago, he used to come and see our shows at The Forum in L.A., and I guess he liked us and so I got to meet him. Then we started talking and, in those days, I think he would actually go out. He’d go out and have dinners. I remember going to dinner with him.
A documentary was filmed about their friendship in 1983, called The Rolling Stone story. A recalled instance where a reporter asked Jackson backstage during one of his visits to Queen’s concert, “Can I tell my viewers that Michael Jackson is a Queen fan?” to which Michael responded, “I’m a Freddie mercury fan.”
the duo started working on their collaboration in Jackson’s home studio in 1983 and recorded demos for: “Victory,” “There must be more to life than this,” and “State of shock.” Reports surfaced stating that the songs will be featured on Jackson’s album, but later, a different story said that they were for Queen’s “Hot Space” album.
Mercury said, “They were great songs, but the problem was time, as we were both very busy at that period.” in Mercury: An intimate biography of Freddie Mercury. But time wasn’t the only problematic factor. Jim “Miami” Beach, Queen’s manager got a call from Freddie during one of the sessions. he frantically says, “You have to get me out of the studio.” When asked why, Mercury reverted, “Because I’m recording with a llama. Michael’s bringing his pet llama into the studio everyday and im really not used to it and I’ve had enough, and I want to get out.”
Another story tells that Mercury’s excessive drug use during sessions was bothering Jackson. Elton John also admitted to this and said, “Freddie Mercury could out-party me, which is saying something. We’d be up for nights, sitting there at 11 in the morning, still flying high.”
Although the songs were re-recorded and performed by different artists but were not how they were initially planned and customised, it lost its potential to become the ultimate collaboration of the two most celebrated artists, performers, and entertainers of all time, mercury and Jackson.