Queen speak candidly about Live Aid 'egos' in rare pre-concert video: "It's going to be chaos"

5 March 2021, 09:55

Queen's Brian May, Freddie Mercury, John Deacon and Roger Taylor were doing press to promote Live Aid in 1985.
Queen's Brian May, Freddie Mercury, John Deacon and Roger Taylor were doing press to promote Live Aid in 1985. Picture: Official Queen Romania/YouTube

A pre-Live Aid interview before Queen's world famous set gives a brilliant insight into how the band chose the songs they played, why they missed Band Aid and how they cope backstage egos...

Queen's Live Aid set has become one of the most famous 17-minute set in music history.

But even Queen didn't know what was around the corner when they sat down for an interview before the famous July 13, 985 event.

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Brian May, Freddie Mercury, John Deacon and Roger Taylor were doing press to promote the concert and opened up about song lists, egos and no matter how famous they are how they still "play and fool around" together.

Queen sat down to give an interview before Live Aid in 1985.
Queen sat down to give an interview before Live Aid in 1985. Picture: QueenOfficialRomania/YouTube
"Honestly it’s a bit of both actually," says Freddie Mercury when asked if Queen are taking part in Live Aid for the cause, or because they didn&squot;t want to miss out on the event.
"Honestly it’s a bit of both actually," says Freddie Mercury when asked if Queen are taking part in Live Aid for the cause, or because they didn't want to miss out on the event. Picture: QueenOfficialRomania/YouTube

Asking about the reason they're doing Live Aid, the interviewer tries to pin Queen down: "Is that because you support the cause and want to do your bit, or because it’s such a unique rock even that you can’t afford to miss out in a way?" she says.

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"Honestly it’s a bit of both actually," answers Freddie Mercury. "I think it is a very good cause and initially I think we would have liked to have taken part in the Band Aid single but I think we were in separate parts of the globe.

"So the second bash I did was this thing and also the fact that some of the biggest and best known groups around the world are taking part, why not us?"

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The band went on to reveal they were 'squabbling' over the now-famous setlist.

"Are so many superstars going to find it difficult to be in each other’s personal spaces?" she asks. "Completely totally impossible," says Roger Taylor as the band laughed, "It&squot;s going to be chaos."
"Are so many superstars going to find it difficult to be in each other’s personal spaces?" she asks. "Completely totally impossible," says Roger Taylor as the band laughed, "It's going to be chaos.". Picture: QueenOfficialRomania/YouTube
The band went on to reveal they were 'squabbling' over the now-famous setlist. Pictured L to R, Roger Taylor and John Deacon.
The band went on to reveal they were 'squabbling' over the now-famous setlist. Pictured L to R, Roger Taylor and John Deacon. Picture: QueenOfficialRomania/YouTube

"We don’t really know quite what to do, whether to play the hits or to try and do something new, but I think in twenty minutes really we’ve got to play things that people know and will recognize, you know, in Turkey or wherever they’re watching maybe," says Roger Taylor.

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"So we’re still squabbling over that fact, that’s what he’s trying to say," Freddie adds with a grin.

The interview then asks if after thirteen years they still get excited about performing, with Freddie replying: "This one especially...we still like to play and fool around."

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The interviewer then continues: "Saturday is meant to be all for a good cause and there aren’t meant to be any egos involved but also.." she stops as the whole band burst out laughing.

Queen at Live Aid on July 13, 1985. The band's 17-minute set has become one of the famous moments in music history.
Queen at Live Aid on July 13, 1985. The band's 17-minute set has become one of the famous moments in music history. Picture: Getty

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"No egos at all, no!" Brian May says sarcastically.

"Are so many superstars going to find it difficult to be in each other’s personal spaces?" she asks.

"Completely totally impossible," laughs Roger Taylor, "It's going to be chaos."

See more: Queen's Roger Taylor explains why John Deacon quit the band

"Should be hilarious," adds Brian May.

"I think it’s going to be chaotic, yes," says Freddie. "It has to be I mean we’re not, we’re not all wonderfully well behaved kids are we?"

Watch Queen's iconic full Live Aid performance below:

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"But that’s, that’s going to sort of actually be the nice part of it. There will be lots of friction and we’re all going to try to outdo each other I guess and but we’re just going to go out there and play."

As the interview came to an end, Brian May says: "Everybody’s going to out there giving their best and that’s what it’s about. Make some money for those people."

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"That’s Geldof, that’s what he comes down to you know," he adds. "We want to have a great time and I think we will but it comes down to the fact that it’s going to make tons of money and for a change, the money’s going to go to the right place."