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mr_praline user not visiting Queenzone.com

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Posted: 25 Feb 06, 15:23 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Does anybody know what qualifies a single as 'double A-sided', and which Queen singles (UK) are?

Some sites say that KQ/FOTW, WATC/WWRY, BR/FBG and BR/TATDOOL are all double A-sided singles (plus some others).

However, on the labels, it clearly identifies the A and B side track (eg 'Bicycle Race' is EMI 2870A whilst 'Fat Bottomed Girls' is EMI 2870B), with the exception of BR/TATDOOL (QUEEN 20A and QUEEN 20AA respectively).... so is this the only true double A sided single...?

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Posted: 25 Feb 06, 20:55 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

As far as I know the following (UK) single were double A-sided singles. Must admit that I haven't checked the UK labels though, because I have the Dutch pressings of the singles.

'Killer queen/Flick of the wrist' was a double-A. My Dutch pressing has no 'A' or 'B' stating on the label, but it has an A and B in the labelno on the label.

'Bicycle race/Fat bottomed girls' was a double-A. My Dutch pressing has a 'A' stating on both labels, but it has an A and B in the labelno on the label.

'Bohemian rhapsody/These are the days of our lives' is a double-A. My UK pressing has no 'A' or 'B' stating on both labels, but it has an A and AA in the labelno on the label. Just like you said.

As far as I know 'We are the champions/We will rock you' NEVER was an official double A-side. It's just that the radiostation adapted the B-side as a second track to play alongside the A-side.

I think what is a double A and what is not a double A, is mostly how the single is presented by the artist/recordcompany. And what is stated on the label is a second thing.
Here in Holland it happened a few times that a single is NOT played by the radio, but the B-side IS played, thus making the B-side the hit, although officially it is 'just' a B-side. Hasn't happened to Queen songs by the way, as far as I know, except the RockYou/Champions-thing were the B-side was added.

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Posted: 26 Feb 06, 05:54 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

The label of 'Hammer To Fall' shows that HTF is QUEEN4A and 'Tear It Up' is QUEEN4B. 'Hammer To Fall' is definitely the A-Side of the single, so following this logic through, the UK pressings say (just now concentrating on KQ/FOTW and BR/FBG):

1. Killer Queen/Flick Of The Wrist : on the label it doesn't specifically say the A/B side, but it does have the catalogue number EMI 2229A for Killer Queen and EMI 2229B for 'Flick Of The Wrist' (this is also etched into the disc).

2. 'Bicycle Race' is EMI 2870A, 'Fat Bottomed Girls' is EMI 2870B.


So, the catalogue numbers on the records show a definite A and B side. However, 'BR/FBG' would seem to be a double-A side, as the front sleeve gives the tracks equal billing [interestingly the front sleeve has BR on the left and the back sleeve has FBG on the left, possibly an attempt to make their billing even fairer]. The tracks are probably as well known as each other, so it's probable too that each track got roughly the same amount of radio airplay.

However, in the case of KQ/FOTW, there is no sleeve (in the UK at least) to identify the A/B side, but in most countries 'Killer Queen' was far more prominent on the sleeve. Also, 'Killer Queen' would have been played extensively on the radio, but I doubt that FOTW was ever played on a commercial radio station anywhere. So could this really be considered a double A-side single?

So, WATC/WWRY is definitely not a double A side, whilst BR/TATDOOL definitely is. But the catalogue numbers for the rest all define an A and B side, whilst every book and other list shows them (or at least some of them) to be double A sides. Does anybody know for sure which Queen singles are double A's and why? If the catalogue numbers themselves can't be trusted then what can?

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Posted: 26 Feb 06, 12:26 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

To be honest, I heard and read always that KQ/FOTW was released as a double A side, but that FOTW was forgotten, simply by the fact that all stations played KQ and didn't play FOTW (as far as I know).

But what I am curious about: Are there any people who actually were Queen fan at the time of that release, who remember what it REALLY went like?
Was it indeed released and advertised as a double A side ???
Because practically seen FOTW wás just a B side. Never got airplay if I'm right, never promotion for the song, never played it at ANY TV-program, etc.

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Posted: 26 Feb 06, 17:08 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

There are countless books and magazines which reference KQ/FOTW and BR/FBG as double-A sides, but with no indication on the sleeves or records, the issue is very confused.

Probably at some point a book or magazine (rightly or wrongly) printed that they were double-A sides, and every one issued since then has just duplicated this information without ever questioning it.

Given that the catalogue numbers suggest A and B sides and that FOTW was so obviously NOT promoted/played the same as KQ, it does seem unlikely that this is a double-A side 'as we know it'. I guess we need a clear(er) definition of what constitutes a double-A sided record.

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Posted: 26 Feb 06, 18:07 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

From what I recall, the radio stations (at least in my area then of Omaha, NE) played BR/FTB back-to-back just like they did WWRY/WATC. I'm not sure when they stopped doing it, or what order they played the two in....

If the classic rock stations were creative, they'd start doing that again :)


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Posted: 26 Feb 06, 18:21 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

goinback wrote:

From what I recall, the radio stations (at least in my area then of Omaha, NE) played BR/FTB back-to-back just like they did WWRY/WATC. I'm not sure when they stopped doing it, or what order they played the two in....


I noticed that once the new Hollywood Greatest Hits came out in 1992, radio stations stopped playing them back-to-back. This was noticable because they began to play the album version of Fat Bottomed Girls instead of the single version.

I just assumed that they had a new CD version to play and stopped using the old vinyl version.


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Posted: 26 Feb 06, 23:11 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote




"I have no time for Time magazine. Or Rolling Stone." Jethro Tull
mr_praline user not visiting Queenzone.com

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Posted: 27 Feb 06, 04:50 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Just done some looking up - three books I have ('The Complete Book Of The British Charts', 'British Hit Singles' and 'The Guiness Book Of Top 40 Charts'), all list 'KQ' and 'WATC' as normal A/B singles, and 'BR/FBG' as a double-A.

Two of these three books are published by Guiness, and are the DEFINITIVE resource for Brtish album/single information, so if anyone is right then they should be.

So now it seems that the only double-A singles may be BR/FBG and BR/TATDOOL, even though there is nothing on the sleeve/record to suggest that BR/FBG is either!

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Posted: 27 Feb 06, 08:27 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

mr_praline wrote:

Two of these three books are published by Guiness, and are the DEFINITIVE resource for Brtish album/single information, so if anyone is right then they should be.


To be honest I normally don't take info from these kind of books for granted as 'absolute 100% sure'.
In Holland we have 'Hitdossier' and man, is it full of mistakes. Or at least it just mentions which songs were hits, but not how they were officiaaly released (A/A - A/B - etc)
But it does makes me wonder more and more i KQ/FOTW réálly was a double A side, as stated in various Queen books.

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Posted: 27 Feb 06, 15:05 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I never even knew they actually put "A" on both sides of a double-A sided record until now...I thought they still used A and B, but a single was only double-A sided "in theory"....


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Posted: 27 Feb 06, 16:14 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

JeroenG wrote:


To be honest I normally don't take info from these kind of books for granted as 'absolute 100% sure'.


Fair point, I'm not saying they are 100% correct, but the fact that several independant books don't list KQ/FOTW as a double-A side single, just adds to the mystery behind it.

Another thought, with regards to 'Bicycle Race' and 'Fat Bottomed Girls', the promo videos possibly suggest that they are not a double-A side. If they were a double-A side, then they were both anticipated to be a hit in their own right. However, the video to 'Bicycle Race' was filmed in September 1978 (according to www.queenvideos.cjb.net), about one month before it was released. 'Fat Bottomed Girls' was filmed on 28 October 1978, a full fortnight after it was released. It seems almost that 'Bicycle Race' was anticipated to be a hit, because the video was filmed in advance, but the video to 'Fat Bottomed Girls' seems to be more of an afterthought.