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May 22
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25 March 1977, Queen released their beautiful song, ‘Teo Torriatte’ (Let Us Cling Together)’ (Japanese title: 手をとりあって”, te o toriatte) b/w Freddie’s ‘Good Old-Fashioned Lover Boy’ exclusively in Japan. This song was written by Brian May and is featured on Queen’s fifth studio album, ‘A Day At The Races.’

Brian wrote this song after Queens highly successful Japanese tour in 1975. The band were touched by the country’s civility and appreciation for everything Queen. Brian, in particular, was overjoyed at reaching a whole new level of Queen fans, especially considering that most of them didn’t speak much English. Upon the band’s return trip the following year, he was surprised to see that devotion for the band was still strong, so he wrote a special song thanking the people of Japan.

In 2007, Brian further elaborated, “It was the result of feeling “untimely ripped’ from our lovely Japanese fans. I had never experienced anything like the love that was showered upon us when we were a young Rock Group in Japan. So suddenly, I felt I wanted to say (on behalf of Queen) that I missed them, and we would not forget.”

‘Teo Torriatte (Let Us Cling Together)’ is an exquisite piano ballad that closes ‘A Day At The Races’ in magnificent style. The song is notable for having two choruses sung entirely in Japanese which Brian received lyrical translation assistance from Chika Kujiraoka, the song is emotionally delivered by Freddie, turning in a touching vocal that allowed plenty of singalong opportunities when performed live.

The band did a lot of research and it was Freddie himself who had the idea of including Japanese lyrics on the track. When the band came back to Japan for another tour, Freddie wrote down the lyrics by hand and asked the woman who was working as their interpreter to translate them into Japanese.
~ Tōgō Kaoruko, the interview by Itakura Kimie

Brian is on acoustic piano, Vox electric piano and harmonium, the song is adventurous and features a poignant bridge and multi-tracked concluding chorus. Queen reserved this song for their Japanese tours, and it was performed in 1979, 1981 and 1982 (but not, suspiciously in 1985, which was the final tour with Freddie).

The chorus part sung in Japanese goes as follows:

手を取り合って このまま行こう (Te o toriatte konomama ikou/Let’s go hand in hand)
愛する人よ (Aisuru hito yo/my beloved.)
静かな宵に (Shizukana yoi ni/In a quiet evening)
光を灯し (Hikari o tomoshi/Light the light)
愛しき教えを抱き (Itoshiki oshie o idaki/Embracing loving teachings)

The chorus part sung in English:[5]

Let us cling together as the years go by,
Oh my love, my love,
In the quiet of the night
Let our candle always burn,
Let us never lose the lessons we have learned.

This single was exclusively released in Japan and peaked at #49.

Here’s a fabulous live version from 1979 👉 https://youtu.be/WDynFluHPJs

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  • A kind of Magic
    A kind of Magic 1986
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