Freddie Mercury’s Lesser Known Stage Name: Larry Lurex

The whole world is familiar with the name Freddie Mercury even if they aren’t the fans of his music or his lifestyle. Freddie Mercury is one of the best-known singers of all time and broke records after records with his successful career with Queen. The band’s history is depicted in the Oscar-winning biopic ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ which familiarized the world with Freddie’s efforts and talents.

Even though the biopic briefly showed Brian May and Roger Taylor’s band Smile, Mercury’s past before he became famous with Queen was still a little bit in the dark. Freddie was born in the British colony Zanzibar with the name Farrokh. His family moved to England in 1964, and he graduated from graphic art and design at Ealing Art College in 1969. Back then, he always introduced himself as Freddie instead of using his birth name.

The singer met Roger Taylor before meeting other members of Queen. Later in 1970, he joined Roger and Brian’s band Smile to be their lead singer before changing their name to Queen. They were having a hard time finding a studio to record their first album, but later, they got a spot in Trident Studios.

How Did Freddie Mercury Get The Name Larry Lurex?

While recording their debut album ‘Queen’ in 1972, the studio’s engineer Robin Geoffrey Cable asked Freddie if he could help him with a project and sing some vocals. Freddie offered to bring Brian and Roger to play the music, and they recorded the covers of ‘I Can Hear Music’ from The Beach Boys and ‘Goin’ Back’ from The Byrds. The two singles were released under the name of Larry Lurex instead of Freddie Mercury or Queen.

Freddie wanted to use Larry Lurex as a pun and a personal reaction to Gary Glitter who was a figure popular in the 1970s and who lost all of his fame because he was arrested for child pornography. Freddie obviously didn’t like him even before his crime was apparent and made fun of his name by adapting it to a sillier version. Freddie’s instincts about Gary were right as he was marked as a ‘public hate figure’ later in 2015.

Although it was eventually a Queen record, the records were released as a Larry Lurex creation. The singer was never known by that name but it remained a part of his life that made it memorable before Queen released their first album as a band in 1973.