I went to see Bohemian Rhapsody last night with my daughter. She became a 1980s music fan early on and so she definitely has a bridge between herself and her two parents that her two brothers do not have. Although I do believe both my sons appreciate Bohemian Rhapsody as a song. I can say that watching that movie with her is an experience I will never forget. My little girl is all grown up, but for a couple hours, it was just my little girl, me and the band Queen.
Freddie Mercury is one of those legends of music so powerful that even to today people listen to his songs and love them. Queen was one of those bands that defied genres and still managed to do every single song thy did with skill, style and power. I was a devoted Christian when Freddie died and all my Bible College friends were saying he was roasting in hell because of AIDS and homosexuality. Peer pressure says that I had to agree with them to avoid scrutiny, but in one private moment I shed a few tears at the loss of Freddie Mercury. Some people are bright stars that burn out way too quickly and Freddie Mercury was one of them. Bohemian Rhapsody remains one of my favorite songs to this day along with tons of others from Queen.
Queen songs have these things called lyrics. Real deep lyrics. They also have something that is missing in a lot of others these days – talent that can’t be faked or altered in the studio. It was one take after another until they got it right. No auto tune, not electronic alteration. Just guys with their instruments and voices played and sung well. I miss that.
The movie ends with the Live Aid Concert that was probably the best concert of Queen’s career and probably the last time people saw the full showman that was Freddie. After that they did many great concerts but that one stands as the moment Queen ruled the world of rock and roll and Freddie was a living legend. I can’t tell you how the human moment touched me once again and probably deeper. When I first saw Live Aid as a teenager in high school, I watched it on MTV live and thought what a great moment in time. Now that I know more fully the human struggle that it took for that moment to take place, I appreciate it even more. I still miss Freddie. He is someone I would have definitely liked to meet.
For me though such movies are a double edged sword. They bring out my emotions and they cause me to do a lot of reflection. Freddie made his mark because he insisted on what he wanted and fought for it. He fought a lot with himself but he also in the end was both at peace with who he was and what he was doing. I want that and I don’t think I have ever completely had it. I have compromised a lot because greater things were at stake at times. But this movie and Freddie Mercury have me thinking about living life without regrets and without compromise. I want my Live Aid moment like Freddie had. I don’t know what that would be for me but I want it and I don’t want to compromise to get it.
The problem with the past is it is something we edit and find the good or the bad moments rise to the top and every thing else fades away. Bohemian Rhapsody the movie brought out several good moments for me but all of them are in the past and I want some more in the future. It’s been a hard sleepless evening. Whether that is good or bad I guess I will wait and see. But my sadness is coupled with a longing to see Bohemian Rhapsody played out in my own life. A hunger and desire is building in me and I am sure the movie and those memories had a lot to do with it.
I don’t know if they will ever read this, but to the people who made the movie Bohemian Rhapsody – thank you. If there was ever a life that needed to have a movie about him, its Freddie Mercury.
I also want to thank my daughter for taking her old man to see it. Thank you, Bug.
The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.