Thursday, August 31, 2006
Muslims Put Kibosh on Freddie Mercury Birthday Celebration
Organizers of a 60th gala birthday party for [Freddie Mercury] have cancelled the weekend event after outraged Muslims threatened to disrupt it.
Faced with fierce opposition from Islamists, who complained the flamboyant Queen lead singer's lifestyle was offensive to many on the overwhelmingly Muslim archipelago, organizers said they had no choice but to call it off.
Conservative Zanzibari Islamists last week demanded that authorities ban the party and then vowed to stage mass demonstrations if it went ahead, saying it would tarnish the islands' reputation and culture and promote homosexuality.
The authorities, who have long tip-toed between secular constitutional ideals, the demands of a booming tourist industry and the wishes of conservative Muslims, never formally responded to Islamists.
Few on Zanzibar are aware of Queen or Freddie Mercury, who was born Farrokh Bulsara on the main island of Unguja to Persian parents employed by the British colonial administration on September 5, 1946.
But the appearance of posters advertising the beach party to celebrate what would have been his 60th birthday in recent weeks prompted the Islamist complaints.
Freddie: 1946 - 1991
The following from Wikipedia:
- His recorded vocal range spanned nearly four octaves (falsetto included), with his lowest recorded note being the F1 (F2 in U.S.) and his highest recorded note being the D5 (D6 in U.S.)
- Mercury is widely considered to have been one of the greatest live performers in rock history. For instance, his performance with Queen at Live Aid in 1985 was voted by music journalists in 2005 as the greatest live rock performance of all time.
- Compared to many popular songwriters, Freddie Mercury tended to write musically complex material. As an example, "Bicycle Race" is set in seven different key signatures and contains continuous meter changes (i.e. the bridge is in 3/4, while verses and choruses are in 4/4).
- Although he possessed only rudimentary skills on the guitar, Mercury wrote many lines and riffs (e.g. those for "Ogre Battle," and "Bohemian Rhapsody") for the instrument. He also wrote "Crazy Little Thing Called Love" on the guitar.
Now some folks may not necessarily approve who Mr. Mercury may have bunked with during his lifetime and it's their right, I guess, to "judge" him on that. But is that any reason - any real reason - to not celebrate the guy's birthday in the country where he was born? And especially since his influence on modern music cannot be denied?
The man had talent and one of the finest voices in music. Ever.
Happy Birthday Freddie. Your voice and talent is missed by me and many others across the world.
She will have missed, because of these assholes, a major celebration.
Diversity rocks, Not.
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