Brian May Recalls Realizing Freddie Mercury Was Suffering Quietly

Brian May talked about Freddie Mercury’s death anniversary in a recent interview with BBC Radio and stated that he doesn’t celebrate his death. As the conversation went on, the Queen guitarist recalled how Freddie was going through his illness quietly but, the band knew something was wrong.

Freddie’s death was probably one of the most unfortunate events in the music industry. Since he contracted the disease a decade after the first diagnosis and the medical research was still ongoing, he couldn’t benefit from the now existing drugs. However, he is immortal in his bandmates’ and fans’ minds as even 30 years after his passing, he is still one the most appreciated frontmen in rock history.

On the 30th anniversary of his death last week, Brian May talked about his late friend and recalled when he first got the disease. The band knew about AIDS from the news, but they all thought it could not get too close. They did talk about how they should be careful but also didn’t mind it. However, Freddie started to get ill after a while, but the band didn’t talk about it with him.

They were still creating and performing while Freddie was ill, and it was something they all swept under the rug for a while until Freddie came forward and told them that he had contracted AIDS, but all he wanted to do was perform. He continued to state how sorrowful they are to this day that Freddie caught it before the drugs were available.

Here are Brian’s words:

“I remember us looking at newspaper articles in the studio talking about this strange disease which had been found in San Francisco, and seemed to be incurable, and seemed to be in gay men. And it seemed to be very distant.

I remember we had a short discussion about it and thought it was something to watch out for. But we didn’t really talk about it much, Freddie certainly didn’t talk about it much. But, was certainly in the back of my mind, and probably all of their minds for a long time.

And if we jump forward, I guess, two and a half years or so, we started seeing Freddie suffering from something, and we didn’t know what it was. We started to wonder, and we didn’t have a conversation for a long time because it didn’t seem to be appropriate.”

He went on to say:

“And it was much later that Freddie came out and said, ‘Look, you know what I’m dealing with, I’m sure. This is what I want to do.’ So I’ve compressed it a long time, but probably we all thought always it’s not gonna affect us, this is something that affects other people. And it turns out that Freddie got it too early.

If he got it a few months later, he would have survived because that wonderful cocktail of drugs was evolved, which basically dealt with the symptoms and enabled people with AIDS a normal life. Freddie didn’t have the benefit of that. He had the benefit of the greatest specialists in Britain and the world, but they didn’t have the knowledge at the time to save him. So, we’ll eternally be sad that’s the way things turned out.”

You can watch the full interview below.