Did you know Freddie Mercury had solo recordings? I didn’t. Diving into the YouTube rabbit hole this morning, I discovered a 1986 London musical, “Time, The Musical.” It was developed by Dave Clark (yes, THAT Dave Clark), who co-wrote the book, lyrics, and music. Loosely based on Dr. Who’s Time Lord character, the show featured the last performance of Sir Laurence Olivier as a floating big-head hologram narrator. A concept double album released at the time is often mistakenly referred to as a “cast album,” although only two cast members — Cliff Richard and Sir Laurence Olivier — appeared on it. Most of the songs were performed by various non-cast members, including Freddie’s performance of “Time.” To commemorate the show’s 25th anniversary, in 2012 Clark released on iTunes the only digital recording of the double album, encompassing all of the musical’s songs and additional material.
As for Freddie Mercury’s solo oeuvre, he released two studio albums and multiple singles. Posthumous releases number at least seven compilations, as well as the comprehensive 12 disc “Solo Collection.” His latest posthumous release (June 20, 2019) is a recently-discovered video of the original recording session for the 1986 concept album. In it, Freddie performed “Time Waits for No One” with only a piano accompaniment. Dave Clark International released the song on July 26 as a single CD; it was scheduled to be released as a 7″ vinyl picture disk on July 27. (Note: As of this writing, the CD appears to have been released only in the UK; it’s not clear whether the picture disk has been released.)
Compiled from Time The Musical Fan Site, Theatrecrafts.com, Wikipedia pages (The Dave Clark Five, Time: Dave Clark album, Time: Freddie Mercury Song, and Freddie Mercury Discography), FreddieMercury.com, UDiscoverMusic, Queen News on brianmay.com, NME, and Amazon.
Photo: Sunset near the Freddie Mercury statue in Montreux, Switzerland (Wikimedia Commons)