One of the most legendary songs of all time, the song that people from different nations and tongues can sing by heart, the song that will always be in people’s hearts because of its uniqueness and the “risky” way it was created. When Queen faced a difficult time financially but had the most revolutionary ideas in the music industry at that time. They had to be incredibly brave in order to put these ideas into tape and produce those masterpieces.
But one of the most unforgettable ballad Queen created, probably during their whole music making period is Bohemian Rhapsody. Its meaning I will be discussing below, and there’s a lot I have to say…
A Brief Overview
As for me, I have been a Queen fan for many years because of my parents. I started by watching the Live Aid performances with them, not really understanding what was going on but I loved the vibe. I remember asking my parents if we could go to that concert, even though we live far away from the UK and they revealed to me that Freddie Mercury had sadly passed away from AIDS, which I later learned what was.
I was really sad about it, but I soon forgot, since my parents stopped listening to Queen so passionately. Then, after about 10 years, I came back to them, willing to explore their music once again. I was moved by every single album in a unique way. Listening to Queen is always an amazing experience, I sometimes wonder how these songs are offered to the public for free.
I love the solos of each member too (I think Deacon doesn’t have a solo career but I haven’t thoroughly searched for songs of his so I can’t speak with certainty). Every member have their own unique way to express themselves and, all combined together give the world the fascinating result that is Queen.
The Actual Meaning Of BoRhap
Although I’ve known Queen and their music for too long (almost all my life), I struggle when it comes to telling the meaning behind the lyrics of their songs. So, imagine how difficult it must have been when looking for the meaning behind Bohemian Rhapsody, the song that has puzzled and will be puzzling all music experts, since its one of the most well – known yet mysterious songs out there.
Looking myself, I didn’t find anything worth mentioning about the song’s meaning. Everything I found on the Internet was too perplexing as well. So, after jotting down some facts while performing my research, this is the result:
Bohemian Rhapsody is about the life of the singer of Queen, Freddie Mercury, who wrote and composed the song by himself.
If you have seen the movie Bohemian Rhapsody, you will recognize some facts I will mention below, but if not, you will still be able to follow my train of thought. I highly recommend that you watch the movie though, especially if you like Queen’s music.
“Mama, just killed a man” to “I sometimes wish I’d never been born at all”
I’ll get straight into it. With “Mama, just killed a man”, Mercury is starting a conversation with his mother, telling her that he has killed her son. I think this is his way of coming out as a homosexual to the world and, especially his mother. When Mercury wrote this song he had a fiancee, Mary Austin, however he might have started being into males at the time.
“Mama, oh, didn’t mean to make you cry” refers to how traditional Mercury’s family was. Coming from Zanzibar, they were a religious family, respecting the principles of their ancestors. Therefore, the idea of a homosexual son must have been unusual and, maybe, painful for his mother back then.
“Gotta leave you all behind and face the truth”. Mercury didn’t really care what people thought of him and he showed that with his way of living life to the fullest most times at least. He decided to not be miserable and reveal to the world his true self.
“I see a little silhouetto of a man” to “Beelzebub has a devil put aside for me, for me, for me”
This is my favorite part and the one I love the meaning of most. This is the part where Mercury meets his band mates and they start making music together. Mercury had been writing lyrics all his life, so getting the chance to actually perform them was a dream come true.
That’s why I believe that part is more upbeat and ends with May’s solo (one of the few parts of the song that Mercury didn’t write, but strictly supervised). The meanings of the names are:
- Scaramouche: Freddie Mercury (singer)
- Galileo: Brian May (guitarist)
- Figaro: John Deacon (bassist)
- Beelzebub: Roger Taylor (drummer)
Basically, Mercury named all his band mates, giving each and every one a nickname he wanted. This nickname probably reminded him of their character. All of this information was found out by a journalist, who later told Mercury and he didn’t respond. I suppose she was pretty close to the actual meaning of the song.
The beginning and the ending
The intro of Bohemian Rhapsody (“Is this the real life?…Any way the wind blows, doesn’t really matter to me, to me”) probably refers to mysteries and questions about life that have puzzled Mercury. The lyrics bring surreal sceneries to the listener’s mind and the capture them from the very beginning.
The ending of the song comes after a long guitar solo, which separates the lyrical “meeting” of the band mates of Queen and their music creations together. The song ends quite dramatically though, with the lyrics “Nothing really matters, anyone can see, nothing really matters, nothing really matters to me”.
Mercury is aware that the life of a homosexual is difficult but he has made his choice to abandon his family’s beliefs and stop hiding. His was of dealing with the hate and doubt from others in his life is simply ignoring it. It doesn’t matter to him anymore.
What’s your opinion?
I hope you liked this article. What do you think? Do you like Queen and Bohemian Rhapsody? Do you have or have you read a theory?
If you agree, disagree or simply want to add anything on what I previously mentioned please leave a comment down below and I will get back at you as fast as I can.
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