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Queen and David Bowie recorded series of unreleased 'proper rock n’ roll tracks' together

Freddie Mercury and David Bowie © PA Images

Queen and David Bowie recorded a series of songs together that have never seen the light of day, claims a former roadie.

Head of Queen’s road crew in the early 1980s, Peter Hince, says Queen and Bowie recorded batch of original songs and covers of “various rock classics” in the studio.

Ultimately, only one song collaborative song was released between the two legendary acts – the chart-conquering 1981 anthem ‘Under Pressure’.

As reported by The Guardian, Hince makes the revelations in an upcoming book by music historian Neil Cossar called David Bowie: I Was There.

“(Queen and Bowie) performed some original songs they did together and also covers,” Hince reveals. “They were just jamming in the studio and it all got recorded – All the Young Dudes, All the Way from Memphis and various rock classics.

“There’s stuff with Freddie and David singing together – proper full-length rock n’roll tracks. Raw, but good.”

David, Brian and Roger at Live Aid, 1985 © PA Images

Hince’s comments echo hints Brian May dropped about the recording sessions last month in an interview with MOJO Magazine to promote his book Queen in 3-D.

“It wasn’t easy because we were all precocious boys and David was very… forceful, yes,” Brian said of the time in the studio together. “Freddie and David locked horns, without a doubt. But those are the things that happen in a studio, that’s when the sparks fly and that’s why it turned out so great.

“(They locked horns) in subtle ways like who would arrive last at the studio. So it was sort of wonderful and terrible. But in my mind, I remember the wonderful now, more than the terrible.

“And not all of what we did in those sessions has ever come to light, so there’s a thought.”

Revealing more about the sessions to The Guardian, Peter Hince added: “(Queen and Bowie) just started knocking things around. They did cover versions (and) a few of their own things.

“They came back the next day and then recorded what eventually became Under Pressure. But there were other things recorded during that period, which were never finished or mixed. David did vocals on some of the other tracks which ended up not being used. So somewhere there is an archive.”

He added: “I was in the studio with them. It was all quite spontaneous. It was one of those rock’n’roll moments. They were just fooling around and played each other songs.

“Certainly, there were other tracks recorded with Queen and Bowie, and Freddie singing, which were never released. Pretty raw, but original material definitely. They were just incredibly spontaneous, good musicians.

“I can categorically say I know that there were complete tracks, not mixed tracks, but fully formed songs that were done. Does it belong to the David Bowie estate or to Queen? That’s probably part of the reason these things have never come to light.”

Neil Cossar’s book David Bowie: I Was There is released on Friday 21st July. Find out more here

Issue Two of Planet Rock Magazine (out now) celebrates Queen’s majestic ascent with a gold, embossed die-cut collectors’ cover. The 13-page cover story features an interview with Brian May, who reflects on the band’s past, present and future, as well as a piece celebrating the 40th anniversary of Queen’s landmark 1977 album, News Of The World.

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