The song Seven Seas that Rhye by Queen has actually a fascinating story. Us were very first introduced to the track together a short, rudimentary important version, tucked away at the finish of the group’s debut album Queen (1973). Later we acquired a fully realised, definitive variation on Queen II (1974).

Even despite the finalised version is over double the length of the original, the is quiet a fairly short track (being only 2:47 long to the very first version’s 1:15).

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The song had only to be half-written at the time of recording because that Queen’s first album – or to placed it much more accurately: at an initial it wasn’t thought of together anything much more than an instrumental musical sketch, perfect because that closing out their an initial album.

Freddie Mercury had actually a weak spot for the piano theme, though, and also kept tinkering v it, as he would keep doing for various other pieces that music. The tune grew, began taking shape, acquired lyrics, and also when it to be finished that had ended up a little bit different and much more complete indigenous what Mercury first envisioned.

Seven Seas of Rhye was primarily written by Freddie Mercury, with Brian might contributing the second middle-eight featuring his trademark guitar orchestration. The tune is officially attributed to Mercury only.

Brian said: “The track was Freddie’s idea. He had this lovely tiny riff idea ~ above the piano. Every the middle-eight is yet stuff that i did, so we definitely worked on it together. But when it came to the album comes out, Freddie went “I created that.” and also we all went, “…okay!” the didn’t seem like that huge a deal, but Freddie said, “I created the words and also it to be my idea so that is mine song.” The unwritten legislation was the the person who carried the track in would obtain the credit transaction for writing that song. And, the money for writing that song. Much much later on in Queen’s background we .”

The song features a distinctive arpeggiated piano introduction. On the Queen II recording, the arpeggios are played with both the right and left hands, an octave apart, vice versa, on the Queen recording, and most live performances, Mercury played the easier one-handed version of these arpeggios. This piano runs room sampled for the finish of It’s a Beautiful work (reprise) top top the album Made in Heaven.

The way the track ends ~ above the Queen II variation has constantly been a subject of conversation. That ends through a cross fade, instruments blending into the band singing “I carry out Like come Be beside the Seaside“, add by a stylophone played by producer Roy thomas Baker. This offers an interesting connect to the next album, Sheer love Attack (1975), where the opened track Brighton Rock summary mirrors the outro of the ahead album through the whistling throughout the first couple of seconds. The use of stylophone was likewise the sole exception to your “no synths” preeminence until 1980 and the release of the album The Game.

Mercury never ever spoke much around the text of the song. In a 1977 radio interview, the simply explained them together a “figment the his imagination” there is no going right into details. The observant fan will but note that the song, like many of the song on the album (and on the Queen and Sheer heart Attack albums) describes a fantasy world named Rhye and also fantasy-themed events ensuing there. One such example can be uncovered in the track Lily that the Valley native the Sheer heart Attack album: “Messenger from 7 Seas has actually flown, to tell the king the Rhye he’s lost his throne.”


This last version would become the band’s 3rd single, released on 23 February 1974. That would additionally be the band’s an initial hit due to an unexpected opportunity.

The song was initially meant to it is in an album monitor on Queen II, as soon as a sudden chance presented itself. David Bowie had actually to cancel an illustration on peak of the Pops. The was because of perform Rebel Rebel for the 21 February edition, and his so late cancellation triggered frantic phone call calls native the BBC come the labels. Who could possibly to fill in on short notification on the country foremost music show?

EMI’s head that promotions Ronnie Fowler suggested Queen. They were asked and also immediately accepted. Castle quickly chose that their revamped version of Seven Seas that Rhye was much more than perfect for the occasion. Just like they did at Live help some eleven year later, lock took good care of your opportunity and showed up prepared. The kind of performance they delivered left music fans all over in awe because that a long time.

Annoyingly, the full-colour clip of this power is lengthy deleted. YouTube does however contain part valiant fan reconstructions.

BBC Radio 1 duly playlisted the song. EMI took benefit of the unexpected opportunity by rush-releasing a 7’’ vinyl single. It remained in the shops just two work after the TOTP performance. It gone into the UK charts in ~ #45 in beforehand March, yet by mid-April it had reached #10. Queen had actually arrived!

Amazingly, the track that offered them their first hit to be the one that started out as nothing more than one outro top top the debut album. Crucially, the success of this solitary was what finally encouraged Freddie Mercury to take up Queen together his permanent career.

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The song became a live favourite throughout Queen’s existence. It was rested in between 1976-1984, sadly absent an consist of on one of the best live albums of all time (Queen Live Killers native 1979). It was yet duly featured on other seminal live release Live Magic (1986) and Live in ~ Wembley ‘86 (1992).