Who Wants to Live Forever
|"Who Wants to Live Forever"|
|Single by Queen|
|from the album A Kind of Magic|
|Released||15 September 1986|
|Queen singles chronology|
"Who Wants to Live Forever" is a song by the British rock band Queen. It is the sixth track on the album A Kind of Magic, released in June 1986, and was written by lead guitarist Brian May for the soundtrack to the film Highlander. Queen was backed up by an orchestra, with orchestrations by the co-composer of the film's score, Michael Kamen. The song peaked at No. 24 in the UK charts.
- 1 Recording
- 2 Music video
- 3 Personnel
- 4 Sales and certifications
- 5 Legacy
- 6 Dune version
- 7 Sarah Brightman version
- 8 Edyta Górniak version
- 9 References
- 10 External links
The song is used to frame the scenes in the film where Connor MacLeod must endure his beloved wife Heather MacLeod growing old and dying while he, as an Immortal, remains forever young. (It was later used in the episodes "The Gathering", "Revenge is Sweet", "The Hunters", "Line of Fire", and "Leader of the Pack" of the Highlander television series).
Brian May wrote the song in the backseat of his car after seeing a 20-minute first cut of the scene of Heather's death.
In the film, Freddie Mercury provides all the main vocals, while May sings lead vocals on the first verse on the album version, before Mercury finally takes over for most of the rest of the song, with May singing "But touch my tears with your lips" during Mercury's verse and then the final line of the song, "Who waits forever anyway?". An instrumental version of the song, titled "Forever", was included as a bonus track on the CD version of the album. This instrumental featured only a piano, with keyboard accompaniment during the chorus sections. The piano track was recorded solely by May. Queen was backed up by an orchestra, with orchestrations by the co-composer of the film's score, Michael Kamen.
The video was directed by David Mallet and filmed in a (now demolished) warehouse at Tobacco Wharf at London's East End in September 1986. It featured the National Philharmonic Orchestra with forty choirboys and hundreds and hundreds of candles which remain lit throughout filming as well as Mercury wearing a tuxedo suit. The video also features bass guitarist John Deacon playing a white double bass, despite not performing on the original recording.
An alternate version with clips from the film Highlander (which the song appears in) appears on the video single with "A Kind of Magic" in October 1986 and later as a hidden music video on the Queen Greatest Video Hits II DVD in November 2003.
- Freddie Mercury – lead and backing vocals
- Brian May – lead and backing vocals, synthesiser, electric guitar, orchestral arrangements
- Roger Taylor – drum machine, backing vocals
- Michael Kamen – orchestral arrangements, conductor
- National Philharmonic Orchestra – strings, brass and percussion
Sales and certifications
|United Kingdom (BPI)||Silver||250,000|
sales+streaming figures based on certification alone
- Seal performed a live version of this song at The Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert in 1992. He said the song made him cry when he first heard it.
- Closing the Isle of Wight Festival in England on 12 June 2016, Queen + Adam Lambert performed the song as a tribute to the victims of the mass shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida earlier that day.
|"Who Wants to Live Forever"|
|Single by Dune|
|from the album Forever|
|Released||23 October 1996|
|Dune singles chronology|
Dune's version of "Who Wants to Live Forever" sold more than 500,000 copies in Germany. The single peaked at No. 3 in the Austrian singles charts, No. 9 in the Swiss Charts, No. 12 in the Dutch Charts and No. 59 in the Swedish charts. It was nominated to the 1997 Echo Awards for the most successful national dance single.
- Who Wants to Live Forever (Sixtysix Radio Mix) (3:54)
- Who Wants to Live Forever (South Bound Mix) (3:58)
- Highland Trilogy: One Day in Glencoe (4:49)
- Highland Trilogy: Valley of Tears (4:58)
- Highland Trilogy: In the Air, Part 2 (10:29)
Released: 4 December 1996
- Who Wants to Live Forever (Komakino Remix) (5:32)
- Who Wants to Live Forever (Future Breeze Remix) (7:03)
- In the Air, Part 1 (5:13)
|Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)||3|
|Europe (Eurochart Hot 100)||13|
|ID is MANDATORY FOR GERMAN CHARTS||2|
|Netherlands (Dutch Top 40)||9|
|Netherlands (Single Top 100)||12|
|Scotland (Official Charts Company)||65|
|Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)||9|
|UK Singles (Official Charts Company)||77|
|Germany (Official German Charts)||44|
|Germany (Official German Charts)||49|
Sarah Brightman version
|"Who Wants to Live Forever"|
|Single by Sarah Brightman|
|from the album Timeless|
|Sarah Brightman singles chronology|
Soprano Sarah Brightman released her cover of "Who Wants to Live Forever", from her album Timeless/Time to Say Goodbye, as a single in 1997 (See 1997 in music). The single peaked at No. 45 in the UK singles chart.
- "Who Wants to Live Forever" (Album version)
- "Who Wants to Live Forever" (Xenomania club mix)
Maxi CD single
- "Who Wants to Live Forever (Trouser Enthusiasts 'Cybernetic Odalisque' Mix)"
- "Who Wants to Live Forever (Xenomania Club Mix)"
- "Who Wants to Live Forever (Xenomania Dub Mix)"
- "Who Wants to Live Forever (X-Citing Mix)
Edyta Górniak version
|Single by Edyta Górniak|
|Edyta Górniak singles chronology|
Polish singer Edyta Górniak released a cover of the song in 2003 called "Nieśmiertelni" (Immortals). She recorded the cover with Polish lyrics for the cover compilation album RMF FM – Moja i Twoja muzyka by Polish radio station RMF FM. It was released as a promo radio single by Pomaton EMI. The image on the cover was shot by photographer Robert Wolański.
- Nieśmiertelni (3:26)
- Who Wants To Live Forever UltimateQueen.co.uk
- Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums. London: Guinness World Records Limited
- "Readers' Poll: 10 Greatest Queen Songs". Rolling Stone. 12 March 2014. Retrieved 1 December 2018.
- Georg Purvis (28 August 2012). Queen: The Complete Works. Titan. p. 935. ISBN 978-1-78116-287-3. Retrieved 9 August 2017.
- Queen Promo Videos: Who Wants To Live Forever Ultimate Queen. Retrieved 11 November 2011
- "British single certifications – Who Wants To Live Forever". British Phonographic Industry. Select singles in the Format field. Select Silver in the Certification field. Type Who Wants To Live Forever in the "Search BPI Awards" field and then press Enter.
- The Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert: Who Wants To Live Forever Ultimate Queen. Retrieved 20 August 2011
- "Isle of Wight Festival: Queen pay tribute to Orlando shooting victims". BBC. 14 June 2016.
- "Angels 'favourite funeral song'". BBC News. 10 March 2005. Retrieved 24 February 2013.
- "Credits - Matt Broadley". mattbroadley.com. Retrieved January 29, 2017.
- "Austriancharts.at – Dune – Who Wants To Live Forever" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40. Retrieved 20 April 2018.
- "Music & Media: Eurochart Hot 100" (PDF). Music & Media. Retrieved 5 May 2018.
- "Top 10 Hungary" (PDF). Music & Media. Retrieved 5 May 2018.
- "Nederlandse Top 40 – Dune" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40. Retrieved 20 April 2018.
- "Dutchcharts.nl – Dune – Who Wants To Live Forever" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved 20 April 2018.
- "Swedishcharts.com – Dune – Who Wants To Live Forever". Singles Top 100. Retrieved 20 April 2018.
- "Swisscharts.com – Dune – Who Wants To Live Forever". Swiss Singles Chart. Retrieved 20 April 2018.
- "Top 100 Single-Jahrescharts" (in German). GfK Entertainment. Retrieved August 7, 2015.
- "Top 100 Single-Jahrescharts" (in German). GfK Entertainment. Retrieved April 17, 2018.
- "who wants to live forever | full Official Chart History". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 2018-11-27.