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Is This the Real Life? The Untold Story of Queen by Mark Blake

Is This the Real Life? The Untold Story of Queen


Is This the Real Life? The Untold Story of Queen by Mark Blake

Queen are unique among the great rock bands. It is nearly twenty years since frontman Freddie Mercury's death brought the band to an end - yet their fanbase remains massive. They appeal equally to men and women. Their fans are just as likely to be teenagers too young to have been born when the band were still touring and making records (thanks not least to the huge success of the musical We Will Rock You). And their musical history is one of constant reinvention - from heavy metal and prog rock to disco pop, stadium anthems and even jazz influences. Now, Mark Blake, the experienced Mojo journalist who wrote Aurum's bestselling book on Pink Floyd, has written the definitive history. Having already interviewed the surviving band members over the years, he has now tracked down dozens and dozens of new interviewees, from Queen's first long-forgotten bass players to Freddie Mercury's schoolmates in Isleworth, Middlesex, to trace Queen's long career from their very first gawky performances in St Helens through their sensational stage-stealing appearance on Live Aid to the band's collaboration with Paul Rodgers at the beginning of the century. Full of fascinating new revelations - especially about the improbable transformation of a shy Asian schoolboy called Bulsara into the outrageous-living hedonist that was Freddie Mercury - this is a book every Queen fan will want to have.


'Richly detailed biography...draws on extensive interviews'

'Pick of the Paperbacks) Daily Telegraph 'Mark Blake matches the detail of his Pink Floyd book with a fluid, muscular narration of the band's rise. Crucially, he interviews the key players (which the other biographies don't.)'

/10 Classic Rock magazine 'Presents the whole, splendid saga...sparkling anecdotes throughout.

'Genuinely adds to the fund of knowledge about this truly unique band.'
Record Collector

'Includes a highly interesting section on their origins...a well-researched account...A good choice for both Queen experts and more lightweight fans.'
Sunday Business Post

About the Author

Mark Blake is a former Assistant Editor of Q and long-time contributor to Mojo magazine. He is the author of the definitive Pink Floyd biography, Pigs Might Fly: The Inside Story of Pink Floyd, Is This the Real Life?: The Untold Story of Queen, and editor of Stone Me: the Wit & Wisdom of Keith Richards (all published by Aurum) and also the editor of Dylan: Visions, Portraits and Back Pages and Punk: The Whole Story. He lives in London with his wife and son.

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Book Info

Publication date

10th September 2011


Mark Blake

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Aurum Press


400 pages


Individual composers & musicians, specific bands & groups
Rock & Pop music



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