I distinctly remember walking in the gate and going into Freddie’s little room where he had a Dansette record player, an auto changer.
The vinyl records that went on it were quite magical. I distinctly remember him putting the record on – it was a Jimi Hendrix record, I think it was Axis: Bold As Love – and he goes ‘Brian, Brian, Brian, listen, listen, listen.’ And I go, ‘yes, it’s Jimi Hendrix, we love Jimi Hendrix, he’s magic.’
And he goes, ‘no, no – listen to what they do in the production. See this guitar comes around here and if you come around to this speaker it comes around here. They’re panning it around, they’re moving it around. This is the kind of thing we have to do, this is what we’re gonna do.’
And at that time I thought, ‘well, can you sing?’ We had no idea – we’d seen Freddie in the very early stages where he ran around a lot and was a big, declamatory star, but he didn’t do much singing.
He did a lot of wonderful posing around and some rather kind of excited, shouty kind of singing, but you couldn’t imagine that this person was going to become the wonderful, glittering and superbly controlled performer that Freddie became.