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Montreux, the city that inspired the music of Queen

Montreux, the city that inspired the music of QueenMontreux, the city that inspired the music of Queen

In the Swiss town of Montreux Mountain Studios, where Queen recorded a total of seven albums and established himself as one of the best groups he was history.

On the banks of Lake Geneva Montreux, a city that seems to have caught the tranquility and peace that convey the water is located. On the other hand, that tranquility contrasts with the threatening presence of the mountains of Swiss Alps raised a few meters from the shore. However, this contrast is what makes the place into a larger site unique and worthy of inspiring one group of rock history. Queen

“If you want to find peace in your soul, go to Montreux”, said Freddie Mercury. A peace born in Zanzibar served to bring to light for a total of seven albums, all recorded or edited in Mountain Studios. Thus, from the album “Jazz”, the band inaugurated a relationship with Switzerland that would last until the end of his days.


However, Montreux is also a city that has served so many other intellectuals Hallaran that peace of Freddie spoke. Tchaikovsky, Stravinsky, Charles Dickens and Charlie Chaplin are just a few of the figures who have drunk from the harmony generated by the city.

Mountain Studios, home of music

Montreux Queen Studio Experience

It all started with an incident during a concert by Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention during the 4th of December 1971. Taking advantage of the euphoria at the time, an amateur decided to shoot a flare that ended causing fire at the Montreux casino, which ended in ashes. It was precisely that event that inspired Deep Purple to create the song called “Smoke On The Water”.

The casino reopened five years after its destruction including inside one of the most advanced recording studios at the time. As stated on the website of Mountain Studios, that was the place chosen by some of the most important musicians time, such as AC / DC, David Bowie, Iggy Pop, Led Zeppelin and The Rolling Stones, among many others.

One such group was Queen, who came to record what would their seventh album, Jazz. In fact, one of the sessions took place on the very day in which one stage of the Tour de France circulating in Montreux, Freddie something inspired to write “Bicycle Race” and “Fat Bottomed Girls” Brian. The result was one of the most famous albums of the band, where hits like “Do not stop me now”.

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Therefore, Queen included bought the recording studio in 1979. In addition to the technological advantages of the place, the band also chose it because Montreux supposed to be a relief from all the media attention they used to have, which would allow them to burn without being under pressure.

From “Jazz” to “Made in Heaven”

Burn “Jazz” in Montreux was only the beginning of a long relationship that would end with “Made in Heaven”, the latest album of the band. David Richards, engineer and producer of Mountain Studios, was also one of those responsible for achieving the best results during this stage. Since the purchase of the study, David became the employee of the group, which would come to become a trusted friend for them.

Since then, this would be the place would be recorded and would ride much sound by today identify Queen, although they would also be using the Olympic and Town House London studies. In fact, “Under Pressure” was born during a visit by David Bowie to Montain Studios, an issue that was finally included in the album “Hot space”.

Meanwhile, Freddie continued falling in love with Montreux, which in 1980 led him rent a house from which you could see the lake, which he called The Duck House. His views led to the birth of songs like “Winter’s Tale” or image of their latest album, one of the best known references singer to the Swiss city.

“PM Me Anything and I sing “

However,” Made in Heaven “completely failed to have Freddie as his health deteriorated ever so faster. According to a quote from Brian May’s own collection by Mountain Studios, “Basically, we live for a while in the studio, and he called and said ‘I go for a few hours today.” He said: ‘Give me anything to sing. PM Me anything and I will sing. I’ll take care of everything. I will leave much material as possible. “

Finally, the singer died on November 24, 1991 and the album was released posthumously by Roger, John and Brian, dedicating” Made in heaven “immortal spirit of Freddie Mercury. It is rumored that the ashes were scattered on Lake Geneva in Montreux, but neither have clear evidence about it.

Today, a statue stands opposite Lake Geneva in honor of everything the singer meant to the city. In it, there is a plaque that reads:

Born Farrokh Bulsara, on the island of Zanzibar in East Africa, Freddie Mercury became one of the greatest rockers all the times. His career as lead singer of the band Queen music lasted twenty years and together they managed to sell over 150 million albums worldwide. Avant-garde musician and extraordinary showman, left a fascinating legacy and had a huge influence on the next generation of rock artists.

Queen bought Mountain Studios in 1978 and Freddie emotional ties with this city lasted until the day he died. Freddie appreciated the kindness and discretion of the inhabitants of Montreux, and the city ended up being a refuge for him, his second home and part of his final works.

As the same Mercury mentioned, “When I’m dead, I would like to be remembered as a musician of some worth and substance“. Something, no doubt, been achieved with flying colors.

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Last modified on May 28, 2024 4:51 pm



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