We Are The Champions
& We Will Rock You
Alternative Previously Unheard ‘Raw Sessions’ Versions
Released on 6 October, 2017 To Mark 40th Anniversary of News of the World
To mark the 40th Anniversary of the release of Queen’s 1977 landmark album News of the World, alternative previously unheard ‘Raw Sessions’ versions of both We Are The Champions and We Will Rock You are being released as digital downloads on the 6 October 2017.
Originally launched in October 1977, News of the World is one of Queen’s biggest selling albums of all time. It opens with two of the band’s most indestructible worldwide hits, the Brian May-penned We Will Rock You and Freddie Mercury’s We Are The Champions, monumental stadium anthems which remain a staple of major sporting events all around the world to this day.
Both are taken from the upcoming special box set edition of News of the World which is released on the 17th November. The brand new package includes the original album on CD, plus two further CDs of recently unearthed out-takes and rarities from the band’s archives, one of which is a newly created ‘alternative’ version of the whole album – Raw Sessions.
Mined deep from long-vaulted studio multi-track tapes, this extraordinary parallel album brings to light never-before-heard alternative versions of each of the album’s 11 tracks.
All the lead vocals on the Raw Sessions are from a different take to that used on the original album. This includes We Will Rock You, which also features a radically different approach to the guitar solo, reminiscent of Jimi Hendrix, plus the band’s original studio banter recorded immediately prior to the master take. This reveals that the much-speculated noise at the beginning of the 1977 record is actually an echo of Brian’s count-in.
On We Are The Champions, there are also many unfamiliar instrumental elements, most notably from the guitar department. This track was edited on the 1977 album but is presented here for the first time in its originally recorded length with two more choruses. Also included is a charming false-start to one of the earliest takes of the song. The recordings also reveal that We Are The Champions, known for its unresolved cliff-hanger ending, was originally intended to fade-out. Freddie ends the take saying “That was a lovely feel…that’s exactly how it should be”.
All of the material on the Raw Sessions was recorded in 1977.
We Are The Champions & We Will Rock You are available from:
40th Anniversary Edition of News of the World, released 17 November 2017
Queen We Will Rock You (Raw Sessions Version)
Queen – We Are The Champions (Raw Sessions Version)
‘We Will Rock You’ / ‘We Are The Champions’
Arguably two of Queen’s biggest and most well known hits, We Will Rock You and We Are The Champions, both featured on News of the World – one of Queen’s biggest selling albums of all time.
A special box set of the landmark 1977 album is set for release on 17th November marking the 40th anniversary of the original release.
The Brian May-penned We Will Rock You and Freddie Mercury’s We Are The Champions are both monumental stadium anthems which remain a staple of major sporting events all around the world to this day.
The tracks were released as a single together on October 7th 1977, so this year will also be mark 40 years of these two iconic songs.
1. Brian May wrote ‘We Will Rock You’, and claimed the idea for the song came in a dream. He told Mojo magazine in October 2008 that he wanted to “create a song that the audience could participate in” Source: Song Facts
2. ‘We Are the Champions’ and ‘We Will Rock You’ are Brian May’s favourite Queen songs to perform live. Source: Billboard
3. ’We Will Rock You’ doesn’t contain any actual drums. The famous rhythm came about from the band, engineers, roadies and even their tea lady, Betty – stamping their feet in London’s Wessex Studios. Source: Song Facts
4. ‘We Will Rock You’ has been covered 45 times by many artists, as varied as Snoop Dogg, Warrant, Linda Ronstadt, the cast of Glee and Macy Gray. It has also been sampled by several artists, including Eminem. Source: We Will Rock You Wiki
5. Robbie Williams also provided vocals to ‘We Are The Champions’ for the soundtrack of A Knight’s Tale. Source: We Are The Champions Wiki
6. The music video for ‘We Will Rock You’ was filmed in Roger Taylor’s back garden after filming ‘Spread Your Wings’. Source: Billboard
7. ‘We Are the Champion’s was the first Queen promotional video for which fan club members were invited to participate in the filming. The video was shot at the New London Theatre in London on 6 October 1977. Each fan received a free copy of the single. The band performed a short free concert after the shoot as a thank you to the fans. Source: News Of The World Facts. Compiled by Greg Brooks, Sept 2017
8. Research by the University of St. Andrews in Scotland named ‘We Will Rock You’ /’We Are The Champions’ as the catchiest in history of popular music. Source: NME
9. In 2004, ’We Will Rock You’ was featured in a Roman gladiator themed Pepsi Commercial. The advert featured Britney Spears, Beyonce and Pink who performed a rendition of the single. Source: Rolling Stone