World-renowned as one of the greatest rock bands in modern music history, Queen are woven into the fabric of our culture through their music, story as a group, and the cultural importance of the late Freddie Mercury.
Queen reflects a celebration of being different. Brian May’s ingenious guitar work sparked the imaginations of countless guitarists. John Deacon and Roger Taylor are responsible for some of the most memorable rhythm section melodies ever recorded. Freddie Mercury’s formidable vocals and inimitable stage presence captured millions of hearts around the world, notably becoming an essential figure in the history of queer musicians. While Mercury was taken from the world following a battle with AIDS at just 45 years of age, the timeless music that he and Queen gifted us continues to inspire people and artists to this day.
Queen is everywhere – their incredibly versatile music has created unforgettable soundtracks that enchant us in a broad range of contexts and places. “We Are the Champions”’ and “We Will Rock You” are staples for sports from professionals in stadiums to little league. A number of other tracks such as “Killer Queen” and “Don’t Stop Me Now” are some of the most emotional to pair with film. Then, of course, “Bohemian Rhapsody” became a roadtrip classic thanks to an famous scene in Wayne’s World.
The list goes on, and the diversity of the music possibly rings most true for the album approaching a big anniversary this month.
Celebrating A Night At The Opera
One of the most important albums of the band’s career was A Night At The Opera, a 12-track behemoth which redefined the limits of recording technology at the time. It was dubbed as “the most expensive album of all time” ahead of its original release in 1975, and is full of both addicting melodies and unconventional song structures. Endless layers of vocals create a choral effect throughout the piece, and the overall emotions of the band’s turbulent journey come through more than ever before.
The album has continued to be honored and built upon since the original release. A special remaster in 2004, followed by a touching making-of documentary in 2006, and a brilliant film performance of frontman Freddie Mercury by Rami Malek in 2018 show just how important this music is to us.
On November 21st, 2023, the record will turn 48 years old, so now is a perfect time to go back and listen (again, or for the first time) and join it with your piano learning journey.
Learning Queen on piano
Queen’s discography runs deep, with 15 studio albums without considering collaborations, live albums and more. While it might be the guitar solos of Brian May that gets our heads banging, Queen’s music is full of incredible piano sections. Some are on display, and some are more in the background, acting as a “backbone” to a piece as we often consider a bass guitar in rock.
With Queen’s music, not only can you learn recognizable songs to add fun to practice, but you can learn fundamentals of genres like pop, soul, classical and more. This is where you can really bring your own music taste to the table, as well as how you’d like to grow with piano.
Learning “Bohemian Rhapsody” can propel your skills in both rock and classical piano. You will improve substantially in chord changes, coordination between two hands, and control of dynamics. Throw in the frantic-paced “Seaside Rendezvous” in there and nothing can stop you from learning all of the pop hits!
On the other hand, “You’re My Best Friend” will be the fastest way to get you closer to Stevie’s “Superstition” riffing. This track, infamously done on the not-so-often used Clavinet, directly influenced Queen’s later albums. Playing organ or other synth sounds may feel like playing a “machine” as said in this interview, but it is not a different instrument in design. Everything you learn on a traditional piano can be your gateway to funk, jazz, electronic music and more. So continue to establish your goals, and find the keys and settings that match them for you.
Queen in the LUMI Music App
You might already be a LUMI App learner, but if you’re not, we highly recommend this as a part of your playing journey. Along with exercises and formal courses split up into Stages, there is a vast library of songs to help you learn in different ways. There are even games too, for the days when playing feels like more of a chore.
Included in the library are nine tracks by her majesty, including two from A Night at The Opera. Those songs are:
– Bohemian Rhapsody
– I Want to Break Free
– Killer Queen
– You’re My Best Friend
– We Will Rock You
– Under Pressure
– The Show Must Go On
– Don’t Stop Me Now
– Seven Seas of Rhye
Nearly all of these tracks are playable at different difficulty levels, which we refer to as Quick Play, First Steps, Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced. To quickly access those you’d like to learn, mark them as favorites in the LUMI App.
In addition to these playthroughs, a select number of songs come with step-by-step lessons taught by our instructors. We recommend starting with Ben’s teachings on another iconic Queen track featuring the legendary David Bowie:
Explore the full catalog
While highlighting Queen today, the LUMI Music App features hundreds of tracks across genres and generations. Alongside games, formal lessons and exercises, your door to learning piano is wide open and flexible to match your lifestyle. Only have one LUMI Keys? Consider pairing it with a second or third! "Snap" the magnetic sides together and learn songs with two hands in a wider octave range.