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Freddie Mercury's Lost Version Of 'Time Waits For No One' Is Absolutely Stunning

Esquire (UK) logo Esquire (UK) 20/06/2019 Justin Kirkland

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Freddie Mercury's legacy continues to grow, even years after his death. On Thursday morning, Universal Music released a song and video for a previously unreleased version of "Time Waits for No One." It's a stripped-down performance of the song with Mercury's vocals accompanied only by a lonely piano. It's beautiful and haunting, especially compared to the theatrical, choir-backed 1986 original track. 

FILE - In this July 20, 1986 file photo, Queen lead singer Freddie Mercury performs, in Germany.  A previously unheard and unreleased song by Mercury was released Thursday, June 20, 2019.  Universal Music announced that the track, “Time Waits for No One,” was originally recorded in 1986 for the concept album of the musical “Time” with musician Dave Clark. A video to accompany the song was also released and includes unseen performance footage of Mercury. It was recorded in April 1986 at London’s Dominion Theatre.  (AP Photo/Marco Arndt, File) © Getty FILE - In this July 20, 1986 file photo, Queen lead singer Freddie Mercury performs, in Germany. A previously unheard and unreleased song by Mercury was released Thursday, June 20, 2019. Universal Music announced that the track, “Time Waits for No One,” was originally recorded in 1986 for the concept album of the musical “Time” with musician Dave Clark. A video to accompany the song was also released and includes unseen performance footage of Mercury. It was recorded in April 1986 at London’s Dominion Theatre. (AP Photo/Marco Arndt, File) As Universal explained in a statement with the release, Mercury's friend and producer Dave Clark made sure this recording was dug out of the vault:

Dave Clark had always remembered that performance of Freddie Mercury at Abbey Road Studios from 1986. The feeling he had during the original rehearsal, experiencing ‘goosebumps,’ hadn’t dissipated over the decades, and he wanted to hear this original recording - just Freddie on vocals and Mike Moran on piano. After much searching through the vaults to find the version without all the backing vocals, he finally retrieved it from his tape archive in the spring of 2018.

Freddie Mercury, of the pop band Queen, performing on stage during the Live Aid concert.   (Photo by PA Images via Getty Images) © Getty Freddie Mercury, of the pop band Queen, performing on stage during the Live Aid concert. (Photo by PA Images via Getty Images) As Clark explained to Yahoo! Entertainment, the recording was made months after Live Aid, when Mercury was still "buzzing" from the band's performance. Cutting away the backing vocals, drums, and guitars turns the track into more of a tragic and beautiful ballad. It also hones in on the range and detail of Mercury's voice. The original version sounds like a classic Queen rock opera, building into massive full-band performance. Here, it's just Mercury and the piano.

Along with the newly released version, Clark and his team also put together a new video to accompany the single. After working through negatives from the original video shoot at the Dominion Theatre, Clark (with the help of an editor) was able to put together a new version of the previously released music video. The single is available to stream via video (above) and most streaming platforms.

Gallery: Remembering Freddie Mercury (Microsoft Photos)

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