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In early 1970, guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger Taylor of the band Smile were encouraged by a 24 year old Farrokh Bulsara to change their name to “Queen” following the departure of their bassist, Tim Staffell. Bulsara soon joined the band himself, changing his own name to the much more recognizable Freddie Mercury. Over the course of the next 20 years, the band would become one of the most influential and culturally significant bands of all time.
Despite not gaining relative international popularity until their third and fourth albums (1974′s Sheer Heart Attack and 1975′s A Night at the Opera), by the time 1977′s News of the World was released Queen was one of the if not the most popular stadium bands in the world. And with good reason – despite lasting just a brisk 21 minutes, their performance at 1985′s Live Aid is considered by many to be the best show of all time.
Though selling roughly half of their albums in the US in the years since Mercury’s death in 1991, many likely think of that as the unofficial end of of the band. However, they’ve technically never disbanded, with Brian May and Roger Taylor continuing to tour and record as Queen. Join us at 5pm today to reflect on a few of the band’s greatest songs.