Freddie Mercury: Queen and David Bowie wrote Under Pressure ‘when we were all drunk’

Freddie Mercury and Montserrat Caballé perform 'Barcelona' in 1988

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This week’s episode of Queen The Greatest looks back at Freddie Mercury and the band’s collaboration with David Bowie on Under Pressure, which became their second UK No 1. But did you know the five musicians came up with the hit song while drunk in the studio and messing around? Back in 1981, Queen had bought Mountain Studios in Montreux, Switzerland and during one recording session, Studio Engineer Dave Richards decided to call up Bowie.

Bowie recalled: “They were recording there and, David knew that I was in town, and phoned me up and asked me if I’d come down, if I’d like to go down and see what was happening.

“So I went down and these things happen, you know, suddenly you’re writing something together and it was totally spontaneous, it certainly wasn’t planned. It was peculiar!”

While Roger Taylor remembered: “Well, I think the process was we were all drunk, and in the studio, and we were just for fun playing all sorts of old songs.”

The Queen drummer said they played a couple of old Cream tracks and whatever else came into their heads, before Bowie suggested they start recording something new.

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