Forums > Queen - General Discussion > clarification of Thor Arnold's role in Freddie's life

forum rss feed
Author

thundergod user not visiting Queenzone.com
thundergod
Royalty: 1716 posts
add to buddy list send PM

Posted: 07 Jul 17, 15:56 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Hello fellow Queen fans,
This is my first time here. I am the same "Thor Arnold" listed with certain Freddie Mercury articles and photographs. I am now 62 years old and alive and well and living near the beach in San Diego California. Half of my life was in New York City where I met Freddie in the early winter of 1980. We became very close friends during his two+ years of living in New York. We stayed friends (although more casual) through the Germany days up until his unfortunate death. My last visit to see him was in London, about six months prior to his passing. He and his touring crew and personal crew from the Queen Over America tour (1980) became friends with not only me, but with my three best friends of that time period, namely: Joseph Scardilli (deceased), John Murphy (deceased) and Lee Nolan who is alive and living now in Palm Springs California, two and 1/2 hours away from San Diego. Freddie was one of the most sincere, down to earth, good natured and caring individuals I have ever known. There was never a "star attitude" toward his friends...He wanted to be part of our world and gladly gave us many moments of entry into his. I miss him tremendously.

matt z user not visiting Queenzone.com
this message is...
matt z
Deity: 4482 posts
add to buddy list send PM

Posted: 07 Jul 17, 17:26 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Welcome to QZ if it is indeed you, Thor.

I'm certain you'll find ample questions from participants on this site. As for me, I can't think of many



Except this:

Throughout all the years of my fandom (ups and downs etc) I've never seen much attention given to Freddie's ARTWORK ....not his collections. His own art. I've seen bits and pieces and was told some photographs were shown in the "stormtroopers in stilettos" exhibition. ..then there's the few seconds of some works in THE UNTOLD STORY....but do YOU yourself have any examples of Fred's work?

Ive yet to hear any attempts being made to compile it. I'd LOVE to see that in person. Maybe a traveling exhibition one day with the blessings of his family.

I'll take it on your word that you're not trolling the super fans here ;-)

Wish u well, Thor


"Come tonight! Come see the Overbite! Come to Ogre Battle, FIGHT!"

thundergod user not visiting Queenzone.com
thundergod
Royalty: 1716 posts
add to buddy list send PM

Posted: 08 Jul 17, 03:53 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I thought my message was simple and to the point. I'm not sure why I would be impersonating Thor. I was not a very famous part of his life, but because of my unusual name, people tend to remember me. I was never his lover...just a good friend. There is a picture of Freddie, his boyfriend at the time, John Murphy and myself in a jacuzzi that circulates around. As you may know, when I met Freddy, I was a nursing student at Columbia University in New York. I first worked at Memorial-Sloan Kettering Cancer Center just a few blocks from Freddie's skyrise New York apartment.
We spoke a lot about his music ( I was there during the Michael Jackson / Los Angeles work (which never took off) and the "Under Pressure" days with David Bowie who Freddie said never really liked the song and so, it never appeared on the Bowie album. Artwork is probably more in Mary's realm and not knowing too much about art, not in mine. I'll never forget however, the artistic point of view Freddie spoofed on when he teased the slightly overweight Peter Freestone (Phoebe) and said one day..."And there came Phoebe, cascading down the stairs like a Rubens painting." I laughed for weeks. I hope you believe now that what I typed was true.


Supersonic_Man89 user not visiting Queenzone.com

Bohemian: 303 posts
add to buddy list send PM

Posted: 08 Jul 17, 04:11 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Hey Thor!

Hope you're splendid and thanks for dropping by! I have a couple of questions, as i'm sure many others will :)

1) Your insight into Bowie not liking UP is fascinating, have you got insight into any other Queen songs that were recorded from that era?
2) Roger Taylor has commented on Hot Space sounding a bit like music from a gay night club - what was the reaction from Freddie's circle of gay friends? Did they enjoy it, or did they think it was weaker than Queen's earlier outputs - and if so, would they ever have the nerve to tell Freddie?
3) Feel free to skip this question if it's a little too sensitive - when did you find out Freddie was ill and what was your meeting like in the spring/summer of 1991?

Thank you in advance and i hope you have a great weekend.

Cruella de Vil user not visiting Queenzone.com
Cruella de Vil
Bohemian: 436 posts
add to buddy list send PM

Posted: 08 Jul 17, 05:44 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Thank you for sharing these intimate memories. Freddie's generosity and fun that we hear and read about shine through.

matt z user not visiting Queenzone.com
this message is...
matt z
Deity: 4482 posts
add to buddy list send PM

Posted: 08 Jul 17, 06:29 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Thanks for the reply, Thor. I didn't mean anything to reflect upon YOUR character, rather some of the wanking bores who will conjure up stories from time to time claiming an "undiscovered song/video" on these message boards.

I'm very thankful you were kind enough to post a reply. I do appreciate that. If I'm not mistaken you're the fella that would look like a cross pollination of Kid Rock (*for this, I DO apologize) and Tobey MacGuire, with the height of a Jesse Ventura.

It's a pleasure to have inquired and been answered. I hope times have been kind to you. San Diego ain't half bad.

MJ- That's gotta be another story. I always had this belief that he was just a very alienated "man child" (as they'd call it these days) and not the twisted person he's been made out to be. I suppose it doesn't matter much now.

Any truth to the Llama story? Or was it the "cocaine story "? (*most frequent explanations given for the project never reaching fruition)

I always figured those were just two easy jokes out of both camps to lessen the fact that the collaboration just wasn't "working out". Freddie was very well quoted as saying "I could've been on THRILLER - Imagine the residuals! "

Though i DO think their version of "State of Shock" is awesome, even in leaked demo form.

You gave this info voluntarily. ...so I'll ask another.


....Was the rumored "third" song they worked on referred to as "VICTORY", the same song that the Jacksons later released? Or was it something else entirely?

Did the guys ever "trade licks" (guitar talk) in a live setting or were they intimidated of each other? MJ's been regarded as a very constant Queen and very much Freddie fan.

I very seriously doubt that the general public will hear any of that at ANY time soon. So as it stands, this "third collaboration" is just a rumor.

Lastly, yeah... that fella could definitely be called Rubinesque.... you seldom hear that term these days. Nowadays it'd more likely be "Jonah Hill" or "Fluffy". It's actually sweet in a rotund way.

Personally, I appreciate you coming to the forum here. There are many people here who would qualify for a doctorate in QUEEN *(if one were offered) and folks who scrupulously entertain the notion of keeping accurate factual histories of the band.

As the first person to respond on this one, I gotta say THANK YOU. Very thoughtful of you.

Greetings from the San Fernando Valley.


"Come tonight! Come see the Overbite! Come to Ogre Battle, FIGHT!"

Holly2003 user not visiting Queenzone.com
Hot Buttered Soul
Holly2003
Deity: 5762 posts
add to buddy list send PM

Posted: 08 Jul 17, 06:48 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Thanks for sharing these stories about the music Thor. Much appreciated.


"Queen is the only band in the world that can play so heavily that your nose bleeds, then offer a silk handkerchief to clean up with."
anderssteen user not visiting Queenzone.com

Rocker: 39 posts
add to buddy list send PM

Posted: 08 Jul 17, 09:01 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

How nice of you to share your memories with us. Thank you very much!

thundergod user not visiting Queenzone.com
thundergod
Royalty: 1716 posts
add to buddy list send PM

Posted: 08 Jul 17, 13:27 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Thanks Matt Z, I am glad we can be Queenzone friends.
Here is what I know about Michael Jackson and the California work sessions.
Freddie always had great respect for MJ, that is until the failure of the collaboration. He had rented a small mansion in LA and worked with Michael for several weeks. He did not want to talk about the failure at the time. I do know that Michael was somewhat offended by a "Get Well" card Freddie had sent to him shortly after the Pepsi scalp burn episode which Michael considered his most trying personal incident ever. Freddie wrote something like "While you are recuperating, move over and let someone else have a #1 hit song." It was meant as a joke, a complimentary joke, but MJ apparently took it wrong like any other alienated man-child (as you so succinctly put it...LOL)
I don't know the Llama or the cocaine story having never heard of these stories. I would just call the collaboration a failure due to artistic "irreconcilable differences." Also, Freddie never mentioned any song or working title called "Victory." This could be just a rumor.
Freddie was never intimidated by anyone that I know of. As a matter of fact he relayed a funny story of Montserrat Caballe (Barcelona) being very much intimidated by Freddie. When she told Freddie that she was just so nervous, he took her hand and said..."relax girl, it's just Rock and Roll."
Peter Freestone was and is so devoted to Freddie, that he didn't mind the wide variety (no pun intended) of Fat jokes. He seriously kept Freddie organized and happy, even if he, Peter had to stay awake 24 hours and then continue to make things easy for Freddie the next day. In more tender moments, it was so obvious that he knew Peter was special and loved him very much.
Well, that's enough for now. Matt Z, you come across as smart and very clever. That is quite admirable to me. (I do not understand the kid rock reference...I hate him and his republican ways...not ME at all)

Chief Mouse user not visiting Queenzone.com
Video Man
Chief Mouse
Deity: 2177 posts
add to buddy list send PM

Posted: 08 Jul 17, 13:49 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Thanks for stopping by and sharing interesting stories, sir :-)

thundergod user not visiting Queenzone.com
thundergod
Royalty: 1716 posts
add to buddy list send PM

Posted: 08 Jul 17, 13:50 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Hey Supersonic_Man89
Hot Space was created, I believe during the Germany days well after the New York days. Freddie and I just spoke on the phone during that time period with only one visit. He never forgot his old friends, but he developed a whole host of new friends in Germany and was very busy. Freddie was very much inspired by the New York and then Munich gay scene. Even with "disco is dead" rampaging around America, he came out with "Born to Love You" a disco dance classic, on his solo album. This was very much like Cher's future "Do you Believe in Life after Love" The gay community was not really allowed to label these songs as "disco songs" but BOY we danced our asses off and we were at the discos...LOL.
About Bowie and Under Pressure...I was told that Bowie hated Freddie's "De, dah, dah" Zanzibari chants which Bowie was convinced "cheapened" the song.
Thanks for the questions...I probably do not know as much as many might like me to.

Sebastian user not visiting Queenzone.com
Sebastian
Deity: 7170 posts
add to buddy list send PM

Posted: 08 Jul 17, 13:54 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

thundergod wrote:

Freddie never mentioned any song or working title called "Victory."


Really? Are you sure?


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.
adrian b user not visiting Queenzone.com

Rocker: 21 posts
add to buddy list send PM

Posted: 08 Jul 17, 13:57 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Hi Thor - good to hear from you. Wondered if I could ask a question, was freddie too bothered about the lack of success in the us after hot space and the works tour never making it stateside? It seemed that he was happy to be back in London in 1985 and his garden lodge home was where he wanted to be.

Also that Paul prenter guy was a complete a### wasn't he, did you have much to do with him?

What was your favourite Fred/queen tune? Sorry that was more than one question

thundergod user not visiting Queenzone.com
thundergod
Royalty: 1716 posts
add to buddy list send PM

Posted: 08 Jul 17, 13:58 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Thanks also for the nice comments by Cruella de Ville (one of Freddie's FAVORITE Disney characters), Holly2003 and Chief Mouse...Oh and Anderssteen, as you are a distinguished visitor from Neptune (or is it Uranus), your comments were especially very much appreciated

thundergod user not visiting Queenzone.com
thundergod
Royalty: 1716 posts
add to buddy list send PM

Posted: 08 Jul 17, 14:08 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Sebastian, To tell you the truth, Freddie did not tell me everything. He loved to talk about successes but did not share all that much about any disappointing collaborations. Freddie was big into keeping the atmosphere light and FUN. Maybe "Victory" is true, but I just don't know.

thundergod user not visiting Queenzone.com
thundergod
Royalty: 1716 posts
add to buddy list send PM

Posted: 08 Jul 17, 14:20 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Adrian b,
Freddie returned to London for awhile after he left New York, but pretty soon, he was off to Munich Germany. He made many connections in Munich, liked the fast-paced lifestyle and was smitten with a guy named Winifred (Wini) who he started a relationship with (and who was later diagnosed). Mary always kept the Garden Lodge ready for whenever he wanted to visit. After Germany he met his last lover, Jim Hutton who he found to be a great comfort through the rest of his years.

stevelondon20 user not visiting Queenzone.com

Royalty: 1624 posts
add to buddy list send PM

Posted: 08 Jul 17, 14:27 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Hi Thundergod. Long shot here, but did Fred ever discuss what Bo Rhap was about? Cheers.

Killer_queenIII user not visiting Queenzone.com
Killer_queenIII
Bohemian: 390 posts
add to buddy list send PM

Posted: 08 Jul 17, 14:42 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Hi Thundergod!
umm... I've read Ratty Hince's book about his time with Queen and one of the chapters he mentioned '"The Pink Angels" led by a chap named Thor'. Care to share some memories about the Pink Angels and Queen?

adrian b user not visiting Queenzone.com

Rocker: 21 posts
add to buddy list send PM

Posted: 08 Jul 17, 15:13 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Thanks for sharing, I bet he loved New York. Only been a few times but it's a great place to visit, I'm sure it was a bit shady and dangerous in the early 80's

thundergod user not visiting Queenzone.com
thundergod
Royalty: 1716 posts
add to buddy list send PM

Posted: 08 Jul 17, 15:36 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

stevelondon20
Bohemian Rhapsody was based on Freddie's love of opera. The wording and the music sounded like it was from the 1800's with things like Scaramouche, Fandango, the use of a weapon (gun against my head) which is throughout Opera. Any deep meaning (if there was one) I never was told this. Again with "Barcelona", he created an opera like atmosphere with Montserrat Caballe. That would be all I know..but WHAT great music this is.

Killer_queenlll
There were no "pink angels" that I am aware of . He did, however, like to call himself Mother and we were all his daughters. A game he started long before we met was to come up with a nickname for each of us based on our last names with some "B" rated actress. He, of course was Melina, for Melina Mercuri. Lee Nolan was Kathleen for Kathleen Nolan...a name that still sticks today. I was P.P...who is a "B" rated English actress P.P Arnold (I never heard of her...and my name was unique enough, so I was called Thor, my real name). Elton John was Sharon..is there a Sharon John actress somewhere? Joe Scardilli was named Liza for Liza Minnelli, etc.