Friday, 27 April 2012

Riding Queen's Bike - Bicycle Race (1978)

Queen,Bicycle Race,USA,Deleted,7
"Bicycle Race" was a single by rock band Queen. It was released on their 1978 album Jazz and written by Queen's frontman Freddie Mercury. It was released as a double A-Side single together with the song "Fat Bottomed Girls". The song is notable for its video featuring a bicycle race with nude women at Wimbledon Stadium, which was edited or even banned in several countries. The song has a very unusual chord progression with numerous modulations, a change of meter (from 4/4 to 3/4) in the bridge, and the multi-tracked vocal and guitar harmonies.
Queen,Bicycle Race,USA,Deleted,7
The song was written by Mercury and was supposedly inspired by his observing a leg of Tour de France. It starts with a chorus unaccompanied by instruments. The chorus is followed by two verses connected with a bridge, both followed by a chorus. Around the middle of the song there is a solo played with numerous bicycle bells. During the live performances, it was often played by the audience who specially brought the bells for this purpose.
The video for the song became scandalously famous for featuring 65 naked women, all professional models, racing at Wimbledon Greyhound Stadium. It was filmed by Dennis de Vallance. The group rented the stadium and several dozen bikes for one day for filming the scene; however, when the renting company became aware of the way their bikes were used, they requested the group to purchase all the bicycle seats. The original video uses special effects to hide the nudity.
Queen,Bicycle Race,Poland,Deleted,7
The song was released as a single and also included in the following albums and box sets:Queen, Bohemian Rhapsody, 15 Of The Best, Queen Live In Concert, Greatest Hits and The Singles Collection Volume 1.
The single was mostly distributed in 1978, on 7-inch vinyl records, with "Fat Bottomed Girls" on the B-side and EMI record label. In Argentina, the titles were translated as "Carrera de Bicicletas" and "Chicas Gordas", respectively. The labels were changed to Pepita in Hungary and to Elektra in the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Japan. The Polish issue had the label of Tonpress and either "Spread Your Wing" or nothing on the B-side. Both 7-inch and 12-inch records were issued in the US; there the song also appeared in 1979, on the B-side of the single "Crazy Little Thing Called Love". In nearly all countries, the covers featured a backside photo of a naked woman on a racing bike, with red bikini painted over the original photo. A bra was added to the US covers.
"Bicycle Race"
Single by Queen
from the album Jazz
A-SideFat Bottomed Girls
ReleasedOctober 13, 1978
LabelEMI, Elektra
Writer(s)Freddie Mercury
ProducerQueen and Roy Thomas Baker
Queen singles chronology
"It's Late"
"Bicycle Race" /
"Fat Bottomed Girls"
"Don't Stop Me Now"

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