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ON BOARDING SCHOOLS

It's stupid to say there is no such things in boarding schools. All the things they say about them are more or less true. All the bullying and everything else. I've had the odd schoolmaster chasing me. It didn't shock me because somehow boarding schools.. you're not confronted by it, you are just slowly aware of it. Its going through the life.

ON QUEEN'S EARLY MILESTONE

Roger, the drummer, and Brian, the bass guitarist, used to be in a band called 'Smile' with another friend of mine who was a singer, and I used to be in another band, and John (bassist, John Deacon) used to be in another band. We were getting our various University degrees together and were in these semi-pro bands. We got to know each other through these bands and exchanged our musical ideas and felt that if we could sort of sit down and work together it would come together - it would, you know, blend. So after 'Smile' broke up, Brian and Roger approached me, our ideas came together, and we thought we should take the plunge. So it was basically Brian, Roger and myself who formed Queen and we then got John afterwards.

We said Okay, We're going to take a plunge into rock and We're really going to do a job of it, no half measures. We all had potentially good careers and We weren't prepared to settle for second best if We were going to abandon all the qualifications We had got in other fields.

We aimed for the top slot. We were not going to be satisfied with anything less.

At one point, two or three years after we began, we nearly disbanded. We felt It wasn't working, there were too many sharks in the business and It was all getting too much for us. But something inside us kept us going and we learned from our experiences, good and bad...We didn't make any money until the fourth album, 'Night at the Opera'. Most of our income was consumed by litigation and things like that.

ON THE NAME "QUEEN"

Years ago I thought up the name "Queen"...It's just a name, but It's very regal obviously, and It sounds splendid...It's a strong name, very universal and immediate. It had a lot of visual potential and was open to all sorts of interpretations. I was certainly aware of gay connotations, but that was just one face of It.

ON FASHION

Art school teaches You to be more fashion conscious, to be always one step ahead.

ON STYLE OF "SMILE"

Why are You wasting your time doing this? You should do more original material. You should be more demonstrative in the way that You put the music across. If I was your singer that's what I'd be doing!

ON "KILLER QUEEN"

It's about a high class call girl. I'm trying to say that classy people can be whores too.

ON "TOP OF THE POPS"

We'd had a hectic day at 'Top Of The Pops' and our promotion man Eric Hall invited us out for a meal. Unfortunately the others in the band couldn't come as they had to go back to the studio. Anyway, I had rather a lot to drink and I seem to remember at some point in the evening that someone removed my shoes and socks and hung them on a lampshade. Then I said something along the lines of 'well, if you're going to take everything off I shall remove my trousers...'

ON "SHEER HEART ATTACK" LP

God, the agony we went through to have the pictures taken, dear. Can you imagine trying to convince the others to cover themselves in Vaseline and then have a hose of water turned on them?

ON BUSINESS CONFLICTS

As far as Queen are concerned our old management is deceased. They cease to exist in any capacity with us whatsoever. One leaves them behind like one leaves excretia. We feel so relieved!

ON "BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY"

'Bohemian Rhapsody' didn't just come out of thin air. I did a bit of research, although it was tongue in cheek and it was mock opera. Why not? I certainly wasn't saying I was an opera fanatic and I knew everything about It.

A lot of people slammed 'Bohemian Rhapsody', but who can You compare that to? Name one group that's done an operatic single. We were adamant that 'Bohemian Rhapsody' could be a hit in its entirely. We have been forced to make compromises, but cutting up a song will never be one of them!

It's one of those songs which has such a fantasy feel about it. I think that people should just listen to it, think about it and then make up their own minds as to what it says to them.

ON ELIZABETH'S JUBILEE

The Jubilee's quite fun, isn't it? I love the Queen. I'm very patriotic. I love all this pomp, of course I do. I love it. She does outrageous things.

ON ROCK N' ROLL

I like to think that we've come through rock n' roll, call it what you like, and there are no barriers; it's open. Especially now when everybody's putting their feelers out and they want to infiltrate new territories. This is what I've been trying to do for years. Nobody's incorporated ballet. I mean, It sounds so outrageous and extreme, but I know there's going to come a time when it's commonplace.

The term rock n' roll is just a label one starts off with. I should like to think of it as a vast open door. We just carry on doing as many things as we can in different fields. Labels are confusing, they bounce off me.

People want art. They want showbiz. They want to see you rush off in your limousine. If everything you read in me in the press about me was true I would have burnt myself out by now. We will stick to our guns, and if we're worth anything we will live on.

ON "WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS"

Certainly it's 'a relationship that could be, but I was thinking about football when I wrote it. I wanted a participation song, something the fans could latch on to. It was aimed at the masses; I thought we'd see how they took it. It worked a treat. When we performed it at a private concert in London, the fans actually broke into a football chant between numbers. Of course, I've given it more theatrical subtlety than an ordinary football chant. You know me.

I certainly wasn't thinking about the press when I wrote it. I never think about the British music press these days. It was really meant to be offered the musicians the same as the fans.

I suppose it could also be construed as my version of 'I Did It My Way.' We have made it, and it certainly wasn't easy. No bed of roses as the song says. And it's still not easy.

ON "SHEER HEART ATTACK"

If you listen to 'Sheer Heart Attack' on the new album you'll see what we mean (while talking about Roger - Jura). It sounds like a punk, or 'new wave' song, but it was written at the same time of the Sheer Heart Attack LP. Roger played it to us then but it wasn't quite finished and he didn't have time to complete it before we started recording. That was three years ago and now almost all these records you hear are like that period.

ON USA TOUR '1977

It was the first tour we've ever done without the support band. There was so much going on on stage that I doubt there would have been room for another band anyway. We have so much material we want to play for people now that it would have been far too long a concert. It's hard enough anyway to know what to leave out: we'd like to play all the new material, but there are some things we just would not dare leave out or I think the fans would lynch us.

ON BASTARDOUS PRESS

We were always a sitting target in the press because we became popular so quickly. But, you know, we spent two years putting our act together It destroys the soul to hear that you're all hype, that you have no talent, and that your whole career has been contrived. I was never too keen on the British music press. They've called us a supermarket hype, and they used to suggest that we didn't write our own songs. When the whole point of Queen was to be original.

I'm the first to accept fair criticism. But the dishonest reviews-where people haven't done their homework - I just tear them up. I do get annoyed when up-and-coming journalists put themselves above the artist.

I don't care what the journalists say, we achieved our own identity after Queen II. As for the Beach Boys or Led Zeppelin comparisons: it's the combination of all those influences which means Queen. We were disliked by the press in the early days because they couldn't put their finger on us, and that was the case with Zeppelin as well.

I don't like to do interviews, because if you plonk a tape-recorder in front of me, I just clam up, you know.

The thing is, I believe in personalities, not papers. I'm not interested in us versus the NME, I'm just here talking to you. People do think that because I don't do interviews, I've got this thing about the press. And it's not true.

I'm a very hated person, but I hate the Press as well. So that goes both ways, but to me I think I've learned to live with it.

(talking on "The Sun" publication called "Oh Yes, I'm gay, I've done all that") I was completely misquoted. But from the beginning, the press have always written whatever they wanted about Queen, and they can get away with it. The woman who wrote that story wanted a total scoop from me and didn't get anything. I said: 'What do you want to hear? That I deal cocaine?' But for God's sake, if I want to make big confessions about my sex life, would I go to The Sun, of all papers, to do it? There's no fucking way I'd do that. I'm too intelligent.

ON QUEEN'S EXTRAVAGANCY

We're lavish to the bone, but all our money goes back into the product. We've gone overboard on every Queen album. But that's Queen. If people said, "The new album sounds just like Night At The Opera," I'd give up. Wouldn't you?

We're a very expensive group; we break a lot of rules. It's unheard of to combine opera with a rock theme, my dear.

After Sheer Heart Attack, we realized we'd established ourselves. We felt that there were no barriers, no restrictions. A Night At The Opera featured every sound from a tuba to a comb. Nothing is out of bounds. Every molecule of Day At The Races - every iota-is us. No session men. We don't try to reproduce that onstage.

When I look back on all that black varnish, chiffon, satin and that, I think, God, what was I doing?

The concept of Queen is to be regal and majestic. Glamour is a part of us, and we want to be dandy.

ON QUEEN SHOWS

We've been slagged in the press for our flamboyant stage show. We think a show should be a spectacle. A concert is not a live rendition of our album. It's a theatrical event.

In the early days, we just wore black onstage. Very bold, my dear. Then we introduced white, for variety, and it simply grew and grew. "Stone Cold Crazy" was the first song Queen ever performed onstage.

I have fun with my clothes onstage; it's not a concert you're seeing, it's a fashion show. I dress to kill, but taste- fully. My nail polish? I used to use Biba, now I use Miners. One coat goes on really smooth.

If we're weird onstage, I don't know what you'd call the Tubes. We're a bit flashy, but the music's not one big noise. I think we're sophisticated. I like the cabaretish sort of thing. In fact, one of my early inspirations came from Cabaret. I absolutely adore Liza Minnelli, she's a total wow. The way she delivers her songs-the sheer energy. The way the lights enhance every movement of the show. I think you can see similarities in the excitement and energy of a Queen show.

ON LEATHER

I like leather. I rather fancy myself as a black panther.

ON "CRAZY LITTLE THING..."

I wrote 'Crazy Little Thing Called Love' in the bath. I actually dragged an upright piano to my bedside once. I've been known to scribble lyrics in the middle of the night without putting the lights on.

ON TOURING NEW PLACES

We were really nervous. we had no right to automatically expect the works from an alien territory. I don't think they'd ever seen such an ambitious show, with this lighting and effects.

As long as we feel a sense of achievement and that we are breaking new ground, like doing the South American tours, and planning something like the Far East, we're happy, and we ought to continue.

I wouldn't mind playing Russia at some time. But over there you have to be carefully vetted by the government. The Russian authorities like Cliff Richard and Elton John, but Queen are still considered a little bit wild.

In Argentina, we weren't playing for the government, we were playing to lots of ordinary Argentinean people. In fact, we were asked to meet the president, president Viola, and I refused. Didn't want to meet him, because that would have been playing into their hands. We were there to do some rock music for the people.

ON WAR

It's our young men killing their young men. There's no glory in being blown to bits. (on Falklands conflict between Britain and Argentina)

ON HIS KENSINGTON PALACE

Every person who makes a lot of money has a dream he wants to carry out, and I achieved this dream with this wonderful house. Whenever I watched Hollywood movies set in plush homes in lavish decor, I wanted that for myself, and now I've got it. But for me it was much more important to get the damn thing that to actually go and live in it. Maybe the challenge has worn off now. I'm very much like that - once I get something I'm not that keen on it anymore. I still love the house, but the real enjoyment is that I've achieved it.

Sometimes, when I'm alone at night, I imagine that when I'm 50 I'll creep into this house as my refuge, and then I'll start making it a home. Anyway, as it is, I can only spend 60 days a year in England for tax reasons.

ON HIS AUDIENCE

I like people to go away from a Queen show feeling fully entertained, having had a good time. I think Queen songs are pure escapism, like going to see a good film - after that, they can go away and say that was great and go back to their problems.

I have to win people over, otherwise it's not a successful gig. It's my job to make sure people have a good time. That's part of my duty. It's all to do with feeling in control. That song We Are The Champions has been taken up by football fans because it's a winners' song.

They know we love them. Apart from that, oh, say something outrageous for me.

ON THEIR MUSIC

I don't want to change the world with our music. There are no hidden messages in our songs, except for some Brian's. I like writing songs for fun, for modern consumption. People can discard them like a used tissue afterwards, then on to the next. Disposable pop, yes.

Does it mean this, does it mean that, that's all anybody wants to know. Fuck them, darling. I say what any decent poet would say if you dared ask him to analyse his work: If you see it, dear, then it's there.

We don't believe in having any session men, we do everything ourselves, from the high falsetto to the low bassy farts ; it's all us.

ON BALLET

I don't know how those ballet people do it - the same steps every night! I couldn't perform in that framework.

ON MEETING PRINCE ANDREW

I was wearing a white scarf and holding a glass of wine when I was introduced to Prince Andrew. But I was so nervous that I didn't realise my scarf was dangling in the drink. There I was trying to be really cool and suddenly the Prince said, 'Freddie, I don't think you really want this getting wet'. He squeezed out the scarf and that broke the ice between us. I said, 'Thank Goodness you've put me at ease. Now I can use the odd bit of dirty language', then we both burst out laughing...He really got into the spirit of things and even had a dance. He's really quite hip in those sort of situations.

ON ROYALTY

I have a lot of respect for Royalty, I'm a tremendous patriot.

ON MICHAEL JACKSON

I'd like to release something with Michael because he is a really marvelous person to work with. It's all a question of time because we never seem to be together at the same time. Just think, I could have been on 'Thriller'. Think of the royalties I've missed out on.

Michael has been a friend of ours for a long time. He's been to our shows and enjoyed them. We make a great team.

Michael Jackson and I have grown apart a bit since his massive success with 'Thriller'. He's simply retreated into a world of his own. Two years ago we used to have great fun going to clubs together but now he won't come out of his fortress. It's very sad. He's so worried that someone will do him in that he's paranoid about absolutely everything.

ON "HOT SPACE"

We've experimented a lot in the past and some of the experimented didn't work. Our last album was one big experiment and a lot of people totally hated it. And it didn't sell very well - not compared to earlier stuff, anyway. We've had ups and downs. People don't realize that. They think Queen can't do anything wrong.

ON "THE WORKS"

After all the fights we still tend to come up with things that have been through the sieve and are worthwhile - because of all the fighting. We still care. I think our new album is damn good, much better than anything we've done for a while. It's going to be called 'The Works'. And it really is! There's all the Queen trademarks. lots of production, arrangements and harmonies. It's funny; everyone thought Queen had the big master plan to conquer the world, but really we were so excited just to make an album - that was the ambition in itself. None of us knew what was ahead.

ON DARK SIDES

People think we can just stick out an album and it's easy for us. But really it's not. There are varying degrees of success, and we are always conscious that our next album may also be our last. We don't like to repeat ourselves, so there is always the chance that people will hate what we do.

It's time for some stock-taking. We've all become businessmen, even though it's against our better judgement. It's something that always happens if you get successful. Being a musician is not just cutting 'discs, unfortunately. I wish it was. We've all got companies now, some connected to music, others not. I'm producing Peter Straker, I have my car company and lots of other fingers in other pies. We must take some time off to get things in perspective, or things will start to go wrong.

ON HIS FAMILY

My mother would have killed me if I wasn't home for Christmas. I haven't missed one yet.

Have I got upper class parents who put a lot of money into me? Was I spoilt? No. My parents were very strict. I wasn't the only one, I've got a sister. I was at boarding school for nine years so I didn't see my parents that often. That background helped me a lot because it taught me to fend for myself.

(On children): I'd rather get another cat.

ON QUEEN MEMBERS

John keeps a very close eye on our business affairs. He is doubling as our accountant at the moment. He knows everything that's going on and shouldn't be going on. If God forsakes us now the rest of the group won't do anything unless John says it's all right.

Roger is very important to us in a different way. He's always been an out-and-out rock & roll fan with no time to stop and think about music and that's very good for us. Instinct. He's also the one who is most aware of facets in music, and that's essential in the band. He was into punk for a long time, but he's tired of it.

Roger and I go poncing and ultrablagging just about everywhere and lately we've been termed a couple of queens.

If anyone left Queen, anyone of the four, that would be the end of Queen. We are four equal, interwoven parts. And the others just couldn't function the same without each quarter.

ON DISBANDING

I used to think we'd go on for five years, but it's got to the point where we're actually too old to break up. Can you imagine forming a new band at 40? Be a bit silly, wouldn't it?

I don't really think we'll ever break up. I guess if people stopped buying our records, we'd call it a day. And then I'll go off and be a striptease artist or something.

ON BOY GEORGE

He's a great talent. That boy is so brave.

When I started off, rock bands were all wearing jeans, and suddenly there's Freddie Mercury in a Zandra Rhodes frock with make-up and black nail varnish. It was totally outrageous. In a way, Boy George has just updated that thing, the whole glam-rock bit. George is more like a drag queen. It's the same outrage, just doubled.

ON "TEETH, NOSE AND HAIR"

Rod Stewart, Elton John and I were going to form a band called Hair, Nose & Teeth after the three of us. But it hasn't happened because none of our egos can agree on the order of the words! Naturally, I wanted it to be called Teeth, Nose & Hair...

ON ON-STAGE IMAGE

People can think what they like about my bi-sexual stage image. That's what I want them to do. I want to keep the mystique.

I'd like to be carried on stage by six Nubian slaves with palms and all.

ON MR. BAD GUY

I've put my heart and soul into this album. It's much more beat oriented than Queen's music, and it also has some very moving ballads.

They're all love songs, things to do with sadness and pain. At the same time they're frivolous and tongue in cheek; that's my nature.

I've wanted to do a solo album for a long time, and the rest of the band have encouraged me to do it. There are lot of musical territories I wanted to explore, which I couldn’t really do with Queen. I wanted to cover such things as reggae rhythms and I've done a couple of tracks with a symphony orchestra. It was a very rich sound.

ON RELATIONS AND FEELINGS

I can be very soft, very shy and mushy.

I seem to eat people up and destroy them. There must be a destructive element in me because I try very hard to build up relationships, but somehow I drive people away. They always blame the end of the love affair on me because I'm the successful one. Whoever I'm with seems to get into a battle of trying to match up to me, and over-compensating...They end up treading all over me!

I can't win. Love is a Russian roulette for me. No one loves the real me inside, they're all in love with my fame, my stardom. I fall in love far too quickly and end up getting hurt all the time. I've got scars all over. But I can't help myself because I'm a softie - I have this hard, macho shell which I project on stage but there's a much softer side too, which melts like butter.

I try to hold back when I'm attracted to someone but I just can't control love. It runs riot. All my one-night stands are just me playing my part. What I really like is a lot of loving. And I spoil my lovers terribly, I like to make them happy and I get so much pleasure out of giving them really wonderful, expensive presents...

You can have everything in the world and still be the loneliest man, and that is the most bitter type of loneliness!

I couldn't fall in love with a man the way I could with a girl.

I'm not into business at all. I'm hopeless with money; I simply spend what I've got. I guess I've always lived the glamorous life of a star It's nothing new - I used to spend down to the last dime. Now I've got money. I always knew I was a star And now, the rest of the world seems to agree with me.

I'm simply dripping in money, darling. It's vulgar, but it's wonderful. All I want from life Is to make lots of immey and spend it.

It's not a question of money anymore. I spend money like it's nothing. You know, I could be penniless tomorrow. But I'd get back somehow.

I have to go around the world living in hotels. You can have a whole shoal of people looking after you, but in the end they all go away.

Most of the songs I write are all love ballads and things having to do with sadness and torture and pain: at the same time it's frivolous and tongue in cheek. That's basically my whole nature, I guess.

I just feel I'm not a very good partner for anybody and I just think that's what my love is. I think my love is dangerous, who wants their love to be safe? Can you imagine writing a song 'My Love Is Safe'? It would never sell!

I've got a few good friends, a big house and I can go wherever I want whenever I want... but the more money you make the more miserable you get. It just so happens that I have a lot of money.

ON MARY AUSTIN

After 7? years we have come to an understanding. I felt that as I'm on tour so much, Mary should have a life of her own." (1978)

Our love affair ended in tears, but a deep bond grew out of it, and that's something nobody can take away from us. It's unreachable. All my lovers ask why they can't replace her, but it's simply impossible.

I don't feel jealous of her lovers because, of course, she has a life to lead and so do I. Basically, I try to make sure that she's happy with whoever she's with, and she tries to do the same for me. We look after each other, and that's a wonderful form of love. I might have all the problems in the world, but I have Mary and it gets me through. What better person to leave my fortune to when I go? Of course, my parents are in my will, and so are my cats, but the vast bulk of it will go to Mary.

If I dropped dead tomorrow, Mary's the one person I know who could cope with my vast wealth. She works in my organization and looks after my money side and all my possessions. She's in charge of the chauffeurs, maids, gardeners, accountants and lawyers. All I have to do is throw my carcass around on stage.

ON BARBARA VALENTIN

Barbara and I have formed a bond that's stronger than anything I've had with a lover for the last six years. I can really talk to her and be myself in a way that's very rare.

ON MONTSERRAT CABALLE

I just think she has this remarkable voice...I happened to mention it on Spanish TV and she called me up.

ON "BARCELONA" LP

I don't know how Queen fans will react to this. The worst thing they can call it is rock opera, which is so boring actually. You can't label it in any way because I'm doing songs that I've never done before, the sort of songs to suit our voices. I found it very difficult writing them and singing them because all the registers had to be right and they're all duets.

ON ABSENCE OF CONCERTS

I want to change the cycle of album, world tour, album, world tour. Maybe we will tour, but it will be for totally different reasons. I've personally had it with these bombastic lights and staging effects. I don't think a 42-year-old man should be running around in his leotard anymore. (1989)

ON AIDS

I lived for sex. Amazingly, I've just gone completely the other way. AIDS changed my life. I have stopped going out, I've become almost a nun. I was extremely promiscuous, but I've stopped all that. What's more, I don't miss that kind of life. Anyone who has been promiscuous should have an AIDS test. I'm fine, I'm clear.

Following the enormous conjecture in the Press over the last two weeks, I wish to confirm that I have been tested HIV positive and have AIDS. I felt it correct to keep this information private to date in order to protect the privacy of those around me. However, the time has now come for my friends and fans to know the truth and I hope that everyone will join with me, my doctors and all those worldwide in the fight against this terrible disease. My privacy has always been very special to me and I am famous for my lack of interviews. Please understand this policy will continue.

ON HIMSELF
Go Top

I've never considered myself the leader anyway. The most important person, perhaps!

To some people I'm still a bitch. I enjoy being a bitch. I enjoy being surrounded by bitches. I certainly don't go looking for the most perfect people. I'd find that boring. Boredom is the biggest disease in the world, darling. Sometimes I think there must be more to life than rushing round the world like a mad thing getting bored. I'm like a mad dog about town. I like to enjoy life.

My teeth - I don't like the way they protrude. I'm going to have them done, but I just haven't had the time. Apart from that I'm perfect!

I love having so much money, but I don't believe in counting it. And because I have far more than I need, I give a lot of it away to people that I like. I try to enjoy life, and if there was no money, I wouldn't let it stop me having a good time. In the early days, when I had hardly anything, I'd save for two weeks and then blow it all in a day so that I could have a blast of fun.

I don't want to change the world. To me happiness is the most important thing - if I'm happy, then... it shows in my work.

I'd like to feel that I am just being my honest self...and as far as I'm concerned I just want to pack in as much of life and fun and having a good time, as much as I can ..within the years I have.

I have all kinds of paranoia. Being alone is one. I can't go anywhere on my own. I always have to have someone with me whenever I'm shopping, probably because I don't like being stared at.

I've just been going on wild spending sprees. I've been told to cool down because the taxman will be coming to take a large sum away. I've spent in the region of ?100,000 over the last three years.

I've made no effort to become a guitar hero because I can't play the fucking guitar!

I'll go to bed with anything. My sex drive is enormous. I live life to the full.

I do deliver sex appeal. It's part of modern Rock. I sell sex appeal with my body movements on stage.

I'm just an old slag who gets up in the morning, scratches his head, and wonders who he wants to fuck!

I can't relax in bed all day, I think that is a waste of time. I hardly read books, I think that is a waste of time. People are gonna kill me for this!

I want my privacy, and I feel I've given a lot for it. It's like Greta Garbo isn't it? Virgo, same star sign.

I want to do it my way. I sound like Frank Sinatra!!

I love New York. When I am there, I just slut myself. It is Sin city with a capital S.

The reason we're successful, darling? My overall charisma, of course!

I just love being pampered it's just something that's grown with me. I mean, I can't even make myself a cup of tea. I'm useless at it, so I have someone else to do it for me. That's the kind of environment I live in, my dear!

I'd like to be buried with all my treasures, just like the Pharaohs. If I could afford it, I'd have a pyramid built in Kensington.

The most important thing, darling, is to live a fabulous life. As long as it's fabulous, I don't care how long it is.

I shall be Marlene. What a delicious thought!

I think I'm going to go mad in a few years time. I'm going to be one of those insane musicians.

I love to surround myself with strange and interesting people because they make me feel more alive. Extremely straight people bore me stiff. I love freaky people around me. By nature I'm restless and highly-strung, so I wouldn't make a very good family man. Deep down inside I am a very emotional person, a person of real extremes, and often that's destructive both to myself and others.

I didn't have to take my knickers off, dear. Nobody forced me!

I don't give a shit what people say about me...

I have a nervous energy that needs to be doing something. I can't relax in bed all day and just do nothing. I think it's a waste of time.

I'm a man of extremes, you know, I sort of change from day to day like a chameleon and each day is different to me and I look forward to that. I don't want to be the same person every day.

I was also pleased with my voice. I like it husky. It's all the smoking. That's why I smoke - to get that husky voice.

I can't carry on rocking the way I did in the past. It's all too much. It's no way for a grown man to behave. I've stopped my nights of wild partying. That's not because I'm ill but down to age. I'm no spring chicken. Now I prefer to spend my time at home. It's all part of growing up. (1989)

I'm a man of extremes. I have a soft side and a hard side with not a lot between. If the right person finds me I can be very vulnerable, a real baby, which is invariably when I get trodden on. But sometimes I'm hard, and when I'm strong no-one can get to me.

I'm not going to dance around on stage when I'm fifty. I'd look ridiculous!

What will I be doing in twenty years' time? I'll be dead, darling! Are you crazy?

I don't think I'll make old bones and I don't care. I've lived a full life. I really have done it all and if I'm dead tomorrow I don't care a damn.

When I'm dead who cares? I don't...