Brian May and Roger Taylor recently gave an interview to Billboard, with Adam also contributing, this to mark the 40th anniversary of ‘We Will Rock You’/’We Are The Champions’. An extensive and well-documented piece.
Queen’s ‘We Will Rock You’/’We are the Champions’ 40 Years Later: A History of the Biggest Jock Jam Single of All Time
22 September 2017 by Gil Kaufman
The band’s members weigh in on why the two irresistible anthems still move us four decades after their recording.
The rhythm is irresistible: stomp, stomp, clap, stomp, stomp clap. The chorus is a call to arms for anyone who has ever been beaten up, pushed down or disregarded: “We are the champions/ No time for losers cause we are the champions/ Of the world.” When Queen’s double A-side single “We Will Rock You/We Are the Champions” dropped on Oct. 7, 1977, the two songs represented one of the strangest chart bids ever, even for a band best known for baroque, operatic rock with a theatrical flair.
“Rock You” is a barely two-minute, pugnacious, percussion-heavy pseudo-threat that features no traditional instruments, save for looped handclaps and boot stomps, until guitarist Brian May’s searing solo shows up in the final 45 seconds. And “Champions”? A soaring, flowery ballad about defiance at getting sand kicked in your face and still emerging triumphant, which owes as much to Bach as it does to The Beatles.