> having looked more into the opera's story, I feel he may have been using the actual line and play to describe the way he felt of himself in general at this time.
The actual answer was only known by Fred himself. Sometimes these things result out of serendipity. For instance, we could say that Bo Rhap
was released on Halloween because they'd used an operatic symbolic fancy dress for that song; or that Hammer to Fall
was inspired by Maxwell's Silver Hammer
, which happened to be played on certain Californian station while Brian was thinking about new songs for 'The Works', etc.
What we know, thanks to Dr Wig, about A Hard Life
, is that Fred was in a sort of depressive state of mind. The video's sort of a joke within a joke, showing how Fred felt alone even in such rich and pompous world. In that sense, quoting that opera (and not another one) was sort of a match made in heaven. But whether it was deliberate or not we can only guess.
> Different biographies suggest 'Phoebe' got him deeper in to opera in the 80s and would translate what was going on when Mercury listened.
There are always three sides of every story.
> We all know that Mercury was a very clever composer... is it reasonable to think that he intentionally wrote this song as both his interpretation of the opera Pagliacci, and his own view of himself
Keep in mind that the song
is not his interpretation of that opera; only the first four bars are. The remaining 97.63% of the song hasn't got anything to do with opera. Likewise, Body Language
isn't heavy metal because of the couple of distorted guitar notes it has near the end.
> If this is true, I go on to further state how clever he was... not many rock stars can claim to such genius when composing simple rock/pop songs.
is not 'simple rock/pop'.
> It may also be said that IAHL is FAR more complex a song than just a simple pop song if this is the case.
It's not 'far more complex' either... it's very clever, very beautiful, etc. But it's neither as simple as most '84 hits nor as complex as Bo Rhap
or other things Fred wrote before or since.
> A lot of fans think Freddie's genius in writing was at its peak early (70s) on and that he lost his was a bit in the 80s (body language anyone?)... but doesn't this back up how clever a man he still was?
He was very clever, but not quite as much as in his early days. He wrote only a few masterpieces on his own in the 80's, and several ones in the 70's.
> SLIGHTLY OFF TOPIC : Jim Hutton in a documentary said Freddie might have went on to write an opera... I wonder if he could have???
I suppose he'd have gone for the 'Barcelona' formula in terms of team-work: Mike Moran assisting him on composing, and Tim Rice on lyrics. That's a winning combination.
> If this song was on opera or races people would be rating it's a hard life with the best of them.
IMO, that song would've been only 'good' in either album, as there were far too many gems with superior musical qualities to that one. For 'The Works' it's like a skyscraper in a town of two-floor buildings.
> Barcelona was freddie's true masterpiece of the 80's with hard life only slightly behind.
Yes, but a lot of the work on 'Barcelona' was made by other people, including a considerable amount of the arrangements. For IAHL
, Fred mostly received help on lyrics, but he directed the musical aspect including the guitar solo (Brian wanted to play something else but the boss is the boss).
> Otis B. Driftwood (Groucho Marx) sings the operatic intro of IAHL in gibberish during 'A Night at the Opera'.
That melody was already quite famous before 'The Works', there are many places where Fred could've seen it, including of course the opera itself.
> If what he claims is accurate, then even she marvelled at his composing and that "he got more out of her voice than what she even thought she was capable of"... but that's off topic too.
Not quite off-topic, and it's very interesting to comment here. If you keep writing these posts, I'll end up adding 'Barcelona' and 'Bad Guy' to my website.
> Freddie seemed a very quick learner... i wonder if it's true that if he kept learning he could have written a small opera styled project?
Even as early as 1975, he already had enough knowledge and (what's more important) creativity to do that.
> Barcelona being his first proper attempt at the fusion of styles to me is genius, and i reckon he could have pushed himself even further in the opera world if he sadly was allowed more time!
Theoretically, yes, but keep in mind that a reason for him taking it that seriously was precislely his realisation of having very little left to live. If he'd thought he'd be around for several decades, maybe he'd still writing Body Language
's and 'Mr Bad Guys''s until the end.
> I think Freddie out did himself here
There I disagree. Great song, but not even close to his best pieces.
> Well, it's a bit like The Show Must Go On...
John hated Hot Space. Frederick's favourite singer was not Paul Rodgers. Rog didn't compose 'Innuendo.' Witness testimonies are often inaccurate. Wales is not in England. 'Bo Rhap' hasn't got 180 vox.