Bohemian Rhapsody – QueenSteve Ley
When Queen recorded Bohemian Rhapsody in 1975, it was the most expensive single ever produced. Band members: Freddy Mercury, Brian May and Roger Taylor sang for ten to twelve hours a day and used up to 180 overdubs to create the rich vocal textures heard in the operatic section. The song has become one of the most popular singles of all time.
This beat is heard in the hard-rock section of the suite, from 4:08–4:56. It uses a four-over-six polymetric concept, which means that there are two related pulses heard simultaneously in the groove. The ‘four pulse’ is played on the hi-hat, while the ‘six pulse’ is played on the bass drum (in quarter-note-triplets).
The four-over-six relationship can be seen clearly in the notation below. The ‘four pulse’ is written in blue and the ‘six pulse’ in green. The counting represents the most basic subdivision of the two pulses, determined by their lowest common multiple. If this is an unfamiliar concept, try playing this rhythm slowly with counting before attempting the full beat.
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