Singer and West End star Peter Straker had been Freddie Mercury’s closest friend and confidant for over fifteen years. But when Straker got too close to discovering the tragic secret about Mercury’s illness, Freddie cut his best friend out of his life and Straker never saw the Queen star again. “He came to see lots of shows I was doing round the country in the 1970s,” recalls Straker. “He’d turn up and see the shows and we’d drive back down to London together and we just got on famously, really.”
Mercury even produced and part-funded an album of Straker’s, and Straker memorably appeared dressed in drag alongside Roger Taylor as backing singers in the video for Freddie’s solo hit ‘The Great Pretender’.
The two of them seemed inseparable and Freddie would even fly Straker across the Atlantic on Concorde to attend his legendary parties.
But when, in the late 1980s, Freddie became ill, Straker suddenly found himself on the outside, despite becoming increasingly concerned about the wellbeing of his best friend.
Rumours about Mercury’s health had been circulating for a few years and, although he had told Brian May, Roger Taylor and John Deacon that he had AIDS at an emotional dinner in Montreux in May 1989, Mercury had demanded it remained a secret.
Reposted from @freddiemercuryonline