24 June 1974 – Queen released Seven Seas Of Rhye’ with ‘Loser In The End’ in Japan. It was only their second single released in Japan. Both tracks are included on the Queen ll album.

The song had only been half-written at the time of recording for Queen’s first album – or to put it more accurately: at first it wasn’t thought of as anything more than an instrumental musical sketch, perfect for closing out their first album.

Freddie had a weak spot for the piano theme, though, and kept tinkering with it, as he would keep doing for other pieces of music. The song grew, started taking shape, got lyrics, and when it was finished it had ended up a bit different and much more complete from what Mercury first envisioned.

‘Seven Seas of Rhye’ was primarily written by Freddie Mercury, with Brian May contributing the second middle-eight featuring his trademark guitar orchestration. The song is officially credited solely to Freddie.

Brian said: “The song was Freddie’s idea. He had this lovely little riff idea on the piano. All the middle-eight is however stuff that I did, so we definitely worked on it together. But when it came to the album coming out, Freddie went “I wrote that.” And we all went, “…okay!” It didn’t seem like that big a deal, but Freddie said, “I wrote the words and it was my idea so it is my song.” The unwritten law was that the person who brought the song in would get the credit for writing that song. And, the money for writing that song. Much much later in Queen’s history we [changed this].”

Freddie penned this song based on a fantasy world called ‘Rhye’ he created with his sister as children. You’ll also hear several other Queen songs which feature the mysterious land of Rhye, including ‘Lily Of The Valley,’ ‘My Fairy King’ and ‘The March Of The Black Queen.’ In a 1977 radio interview, Freddie Mercury admitted the subject of the song was a “figment of his imagination”.

Roger Taylor said in a 1999 interview: ‘Seven Seas of Rhye’ was half written by the time we were recording it and I never really understood a word of it and I don’t think Freddie did either. It was just sort of gestures really, a fine song. The words worked well together and created an aural painting of mythology; something which fascinated Freddie at this time.”

‘Seven Seas of Rhye’ was Queen’s breakthrough hit gaining them entry on the the charts peaking at number 10 in the UK.

The song’s success enabled Freddie to quit his day job working at a stall in London’s Kensington Market and focus on Queen!

The B-side is ‘Loser in The End,’ Roger Taylor’s sole contribution on the Queen ll album both as a songwriter and lead vocalist.

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