Monday, June 8, 2009
The “Japanese” Hero
We all know that Japan was one of the first nations to embrace Queen in the early days. If you watch any DoRo documentary, they usually show the boys getting off an airplane with throngs of Japanese fans holding copies of Queen II and screaming as if the Beatles have finally arrived. To this day, Japan is honored with unique (and official) Queen releases that international collectors salivate over.
Japan must have made a lasting impression on Brian and Freddie: Brian paid homage to them by including Japanese lyrics in Teo Torriatte (Let Us Cling Together); and Freddie's affection was evident by his pond of Japanese koi he kept at Garden Lodge.
Fast forward to 2007 and Freddie ends up as number 52 on a Nippon Television Network survey called History's 100 Most Influential People, Hero Edition. Here is a link to the full story that appeared in the Wilson Quarterly.
The list is comprised mainly of Japanese people, which makes sense. Strangely absent from the list, however, are historical figures from the west, although Walt Disney (#40), Elvis (#70), and Audrey Hepburn (#46) make the list. Freddie did manage to squeak past his fellow historical heavyweights, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (#69) and William Shakespeare (#87).
The only concern I have is the date that the story appeared: April 1st.