‘I’ve never considered myself the leader anyway,’ says irrepressible Freddie. ‘The most important person, perhaps.’ And guitarist May agrees.

‘Our separate identities do come to the fore on this album, on which every cut is completely different from the one before it and there’s no concept at all. Apart from each having contributed two tracks to the album, Roger and John have been much more involved in the playing. Roger plays rhythm guitar on some of his cuts (‘Sheer Heart Attack’ and ‘Fight From The Inside’) which makes sense, because he had a better idea of how he wanted it to go. John plays acoustic guitar on one of his as well (‘Who Needs You’). I played maracas on it. While we may not do it that way on stage, in the studio that makes more sense.’

Brian also does a lot more singing of his own songs on News, but he’s content to let Freddie do the singing on stage.

‘He’s a natural performer,’ asserts Brian. ‘He acts on stage as if he was born doing it. That’s great for us. We wouldn’t want it any other way.’

As May and Mercury emphasize, it’s not just musically that shifts occur in the group.

‘John keeps a very close eye on our business affairs,’ says Freddie. ‘He knows everything that’s going on and shouldn’t be going on. If God forsakes us now the rest of the group won’t do anything unless John says it’s all right.

‘Roger is very important to us in a different way. He’s always been an out-and-out rock & roll fan with no time to stop and think about music and that’s very good for us. Instinct. He’s also the one who is most aware of facets in music, and that’s essential in the band. If you listen to ‘Sheer Heart Attack’ on the new album you’ll see what we mean. It sounds like a punk, or ‘new wave’ song, but it was written at the same time of the Sheer Heart Attack LP. He played it to us then but it wasn’t quite finished and he didn’t have time to complete it before we started recording. That was three years ago and now. . .almost all these records you hear are like that period.’ And Roger now? ‘He was into punk for a long time, but he’s tired of it.’ More about the album later.

But if you still don’t believe no crown of leadership rests on the mercurial head of Freddie, it’s worth repeating his comment about the composition of the group.

‘𝗜𝗳 𝗮𝗻𝘆𝗼𝗻𝗲 𝗹𝗲𝗳𝘁 𝗤𝘂𝗲𝗲𝗻, 𝗮𝗻𝘆𝗼𝗻𝗲 𝗼𝗳 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗳𝗼𝘂𝗿, 𝘁𝗵𝗮𝘁 𝘄𝗼𝘂𝗹𝗱 𝗯𝗲 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗲𝗻𝗱 𝗼𝗳 𝗤𝘂𝗲𝗲𝗻. 𝗪𝗲 𝗮𝗿𝗲 𝗳𝗼𝘂𝗿 𝗲𝗾𝘂𝗮𝗹, 𝗶𝗻𝘁𝗲𝗿𝘄𝗼𝘃𝗲𝗻 𝗽𝗮𝗿𝘁𝘀. 𝗔𝗻𝗱 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗼𝘁𝗵𝗲𝗿𝘀 𝗷𝘂𝘀𝘁 𝗰𝗼𝘂𝗹𝗱𝗻‘𝘁 𝗳𝘂𝗻𝗰𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝘀𝗮𝗺𝗲 𝘄𝗶𝘁𝗵𝗼𝘂𝘁 𝗲𝗮𝗰𝗵 𝗾𝘂𝗮𝗿𝘁𝗲𝗿!

Extracted from:
Queen Deserve Rock’s Royal Crown?
by Rosy Horide 1978

The gorgeous picture of the boys is from The Neal Preston Collection – 1978

Queen’s sixth studio album, ‘News of The World’ was recorded between 6 July – 16 September 1977 at Sarm West and Wessex Sound Studios, London, and engineered by Mike Stone, and was co-produced by the band and Stone. EMI released this fabulous album on 28 October 1977. It peaked at #4 in the UK and Norwegian charts, #3 in the USA and topped the French and Dutch charts!

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