The story behind the king of rock Freddie Mercury and King of pop Michael Jackson‘s first duet recording.
As BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY – a biographical film on British rock band Queen front man Freddie Mercury is about to hit the Indian screens on November 16 2018, starring Rami Malek as Mercury helmed by Bryan Singer, we take a nostalgic trip down the early 80’s and find this amazing event happened between Jackson and Mercury that will make you stunned.
During the early eighties, Freddie Mercury and Michael Jackson collaborated for “There Must Be More to Life Than This” - a duet between Mercury and Michael Jackson, along with two other songs- State of Shock and "Victory"
Written by Mercury “There Must Be More to Life Than This” could have been a historic benchmark during the 80’s, but destiny had another story to say.
In 1983, Freddie was invite to Michael Jackson’s home studio in California so they could work on a few tracks together. The King of Pop insisted on bringing his pet, a llama, to the studio. This was apparently not cool with Mercury who gave up the collaboration calling his manager complaining "Michael is bringing his pet llama into the studio! I've had enough, I want to get out."
Freddie Mercury wrote the song during the Hot Space sessions, as the duet was incomplete with raw versions by Jackson and Freddie, Mercury eventually released his own version on his 1985 solo debut Mr. Bad Guy.
After Michael Jackson's death in 2009, Queen guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger Taylor took steps to secure all three Mercury/Jackson duets, with a view to releasing them in 2012. Both the parties agreed to release "There Must Be More to Life Than This".
The other two other songs, "State of Shock" was later reworked with Mick Jagger for a version by The Jacksons while "Victory" remains unreleased.
Taylor has been reportedly quoted saying, "I was very pleased we had three new tracks to put on Queen Forever, As well as the Michael Jackson track 'There Must Be More to Life than This', there is another song Freddie did with him, called 'State of Shock', with a massive rock sound. But we could only have one track with Michael, which is a great shame."
The version on Queen Forever was produced and mixed by William Orbit, containing the original backing track from the Hot Space sessions with May on guitar, Taylor on drums and John Deacon on bass.
Listen to the rare song by the two legends