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Arguably Britain’s most consistently successful band from the mid-70s onwards, Queen began life as a glam rock unit in 1970. Astronomy student Brian May (19 July 1947, Hampton, Middlesex, England; guitar) and aspiring dentist Roger Taylor (b. Roger Meddows-Taylor, 26 July 1949, Kings Lynn, Norfolk, England; drums) had been playing in Johnny Quale And The Reactions, Beat Unlimited and a college band called Smile with bass player Tim Staffell. When the latter left to join Humpty Bong (featuring former Bee Gees drummer Colin Petersen), May and Taylor elected to form a new band with flamboyant vocalist Freddie Mercury (b. Farrokh Bulsara, 5 September 1946, Stone Town, Zanzibar, Tanzania, d. 24 November 1991, London, England). Early in 1971 bass player John Deacon (b. 19 August 1951, Oadby, Leicestershire, England) completed the line-up.

The newly minted Queen was signed to EMI Records late in 1972 and launched the following spring with a gig...

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