El día que Queen cambio la historia: Live Aid 1985

The day Queen changed history: Live Aid 1985

There are many elements that once contributed to Freddy Mercury becoming the icon that so many of us remember today. His hymn to freedom, the fight for the most disadvantaged people, as well as his incomparable charisma were some of the ingredients that helped shape the superstar who 36 years ago would participate in Live Aid, a concert that is undoubtedly one of the most remembered from the history of rock, not to say the most. If you are a Queen fan, keep reading because here we will tell you everything about this famous event that set a precedent in the history of music.

Born in 1946 in Zanzibar, Africa and under the name Farrokh Bulsara, this artist would feel a special taste for music from a very young age, and to whom, years later, he would have to thank for becoming the new incorporation of 'Smile', a band that would soon mutate into the famous 'Queen'.


That Mercury was already at the pinnacle of stardom before 1985 is unquestionable, but that year elevated him to legend as well. Behind him, Freddy Mercury carried the heavy success that 'Bohemian Rhapsody' brought him, which had been playing for more than 10 years and which, despite its long duration, turned out to be one of the most popular songs after its release, staying for 9 weeks in a row on the UK charts.

In addition, his song 'Crazy Little Thing Called Love' made both him and his band start to be on the lists of the most listened to not only in Europe, but also in Japan and the United States, and it is that his Musical talent accompanied by the stage presence that he always demonstrated based on very agile and theatrical movements made him a very difficult figure to forget.

That stage presence was precisely what made them protagonists in Live Aid in 1985, which would mark a before and after in the professional careers of all the members of 'Queen', but more specifically in the Mercury.

A concert to remember

Live Aid 1985

It was July 13, 1985 and London was hosting Live Aid, a concert to raise charitable funds for Ethiopia and Somalia, victims of a terrible drought that had left a large part of the population of these countries without food and water .

The event gathered around 1.500 million viewers at both Wembley Stadium in London and JFK Stadium in Philadelphia. More than a million hearts would have the honor of having the presence of 69 artists, including world-class figures such as Duran Duran, Bob Dylan, U2, Paul McCartney, Madonna, David Bowie, Elton John and of course , the Queen of England. but not Queen Elizabeth, who by the way was representing her son and at that time the late Princess Diana, we are talking about Queen, who was preparing to give one of the best presentations in the history of music.

Night had not yet fallen on that hot summer afternoon, 74.000 people crowded the stadium, before his masterful entrance and behind the scenes, Freddie Mercury and Brian May watched U2 end their performance with a version of their hit 'Bad' that had lasted 12 minutes. They were aware that they had only 15 minutes to revive Queen who was not going through their best moment, but those 15 minutes would become 21 minutes of pure and hard talent, and a presentation that generation after generation would yearn to see again.

Freddy Mercury Live Aid

Ladies and gentlemen, with you, Your Majesty: Queen. Freddie Mercury and Brian May were the first to make themselves seen and with gestures of joy, encouragement and a desire to play they began to build the stadium. But what was it that really made the performance of this peculiar band special? The fact that Queen's performance began with their soloist on the piano playing some chords that welcomed the mythical 'Bohemian Rapshody' did not leave anyone indifferent, but in reality it was something else that made This performance became the most remembered in rock.

The combination of the aforementioned track along with shorter versions of their other hits 'Crazy Little Thing Called Love', 'Radio Ga Ga', 'Hammer to Fall', which had been released not long ago, the end of " We Will Rock You" and the "We Are the Champions" pin earned the band being remembered as the best of that glorious day.

Live Aid Queen

No one in attendance could have imagined that they would see a performance that would last almost 20 minutes, and that it would begin with Mercury at the piano singing “Mama, just killed a man…” and end in the same way, but this time with the mythical words “I 've paid my dues, time after time […] We are the champions, my friends and we'll keep on fighting to the end…', which without a doubt, more than a song is a universal anthem.

In addition, it is impossible not to mention the choruses that the public tirelessly gave Mercury or the incredible guitar solos that Brian May starred in and that the singer accompanied with his unique and unrepeatable movements.

All this display of talent and presence is impossible to forget, just like the look that the singer wore the same day and that in our imagination has been sealed as the uniform of success. Adidas sneakers with the three black stripes, worn high-waisted jeans and a white tank top accompanied by a black studded bracelet to match his belt that gave him the eccentric style that always characterized him was the choice that the singer chose for the afternoon that would change his life and that of his group.

Freddy Mercury

For all these reasons and more, it is not surprising that in 2018 'Bohemian Rhapsody' was made a film under the name of the legendary single of the band in which the spectacular performance is portrayed of this and whose protagonist is Rami Malek, who, beyond demonstrating his good acting skills, embodied the role of the singer as if he were the same person, giving life to him and to the entire environment that he surrounded himself at some point .

bohemian Rhapsody

A living and dead legend, Freddy Mercury together with Queen managed to stay in universal thought and in the history of music, in which they put the singer and his performance at Live Aid in 1985 as mandatory material.

Frequently asked questions about Freddy Mercury and the 1985 Live Aid

What was Freddy Mercury's real name?

Freddy Mercury was actually called Farrokh Mulsara, but when he started playing with the group 'Smile', he proposed to change the name of the band to 'Queen' and decided to change his own to 'Freddy Mercury', just as he would begin to be known from that moment on.

Why did 'Queen' stand out at Live Aid in 1985?

The 1985 Live Aid was held with the aim of raising charitable funds, for which different well-known bands and musical artists were invited. However, the performance of 'Queen' stood out from the rest for its performance of almost 20 minutes in which they mixed short versions of their most emblematic hits such as 'Bohemian Rhapsody' or 'We are the champions' , accompanied by an incredible staging.

What was the cause of death of Freddy Mercury?

Freddy Mercury died of bronchopneumonia that was complicated by AIDS that he had experienced since 1987, but which he publicly confessed in 1991 due to his increasingly evident poor health and about which the rumors did not stop to circulate.

What other bands played at Live Aid in 1985?

At Live Aid in 1985, in addition to 'Queen', other very important artists on the music scene played such as 'U2', 'The Who', which was also their first performance in three years, 'Phil Collins', ' Paul McCartney', 'David Bowie' and 'Sting' among others.

Ivanova Serrano