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Snapshot, 1974: Tea with Freddie Mercury

Outrageous: Freddie Mercury without make-up, hairspray or copious chest hair bursting from a spangled top? The shocking thing about this 1974 image, taken during a year of exhausting Queen tours, is how conventional Mercury appears, drinking tea from a dainty china cup. Bar the nail polish, maybe…

Energetic, exceptionally vain and ‘gay as a daffodil’ (his words), never forget that Freddie Mercury was also a musician of outstanding genius. Whether or not you admit to playing Queen’s Greatest Hits in your car (and singing along – come on, you know it’s true), I bet you could recite at least some of the words to Bohemian Rhapsody, We Will Rock You, Don’t Stop Me Now, and so the list goes on. Tragic to think that he’d die just 17 years after this picture was taken. Here’s to you, Freddie. Tea’s up.

Photo: Getty