Queen recording info sought...were their albums tracked to a click or done live?

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by audio, May 29, 2008.

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  1. audio

    audio New Member Thread Starter

    I'm wondering if anyone knows any definitive information, perhaps Steve might know, regarding Queen's recording sessions and techniques. What I want to know is if their '70s albums were done to a click/metronome track or if the rhythm sections were done live and then the overdubs were added. Or did they record the basic tracks live with a click? I think they have amazing feel and I'd really like to know how they were accomplished.
  2. I used to have the multitracks for the Opera album. There weren't any click tracks or even click bleed on any of the tracks that I could hear. I don't know a definitive answer but I didn't hear any evidence of a click.

    You could set a metronome and see if it stays in sync with the track. I bet the track will drift a lot and thinking those albums were done without any sort of tempo reference.
  3. Maidenpriest

    Maidenpriest Cowboys are the only ones who stay in tune anyway!

    I don't think 'click tracks' exsisted then, it is a modern technique, IMO they would have done things live then added overdubs, they were a great live band!
  4. Bo Rhap definitely wasn't, and I *still* have THOSE multitracks :D

    The piano based tracks, definitely not not, because as Brian's said on numerous occasions, Freddie had such a good sense of time that a click wasn't necessary. For everything else, it's a sure probably.
  5. LesPaul666

    LesPaul666 Active Member

    New Jersey
    On the earlier stuff, I highly doubt there was any kind of click or metronome used.
  6. Maidenpriest

    Maidenpriest Cowboys are the only ones who stay in tune anyway!

    Like I said before 'Click' did not exist back then! it was all down to their musical talent!!
  7. alexpop

    alexpop Power pop + other bad habits....

    Click track came about in the eighties.
  8. Barry Wom

    Barry Wom New Member

    I used a click track in 1983, surely all you need is a mic'd up metronome?

    I've read that they were used in early/mid 20thC to help orchestras play along with film scores.

    I wonder who the first rock/pop act was to use one?

    As a drummer, I hate(d) the things, bloody nightmare and never loud enough in the headphones.
  9. KevinP

    KevinP Forum Resident

    The videos DVD volume 1 has Brian going through the multi-tracks of BoRhap and, as BeatleJWOL mentions, he (Brian) points out that Freddie had an internal metronome and didn't need no click track (which, as been mentioned a few times already, didn't exist then).

    Didn't exactly contribute much here, did I? :)
  10. pantofis

    pantofis Forum Resident

    Berlin, Germany
    The earliest rock record I know to make use of the click track is Steve Hackett's "Voyage of the acolyte" where on the last track Phil Collins' drums were added afterwards..to a click.
    Somewhere I've read that Mike Oldfield used a click track for "Ommadawn".

    I'm pretty sure click tracks became common once sequencers were introduced in the mid 70'es.
  11. lobo

    lobo Music has always been a matter of Energy to me...

    But didn't Moonie as early as in 1976 play those Quadrophenia songs in concert to a click track?
  12. The earliest non-live rhythm track I know of from Queen is "Another One Bites The Dust" (1980), which is built around a drum loop.

    After that, they still played live through "Under Pressure" (1981). Not 100% sure about the Hot Space album, but I think it's probably a click track. After that, I tend to think it's a combination of drum machine and Roger with a click track: "I Want To Break Free" is a machine, "One Vision" is a live drummer (except the intro to the US GH version), and so on.

    I could be wrong, but I don't think Roy Thomas Baker used a click track at all with Queen or The Cars. (Except for "Shake It Up", I think...)
  13. ShawnMcCann

    ShawnMcCann Forum Resident

    Pepperell, MA
    As a teenager in high school in the late 70s I knew what a click track was. That was the heyday of disco, and I can't imagine how all those extended disco records were done if they didn't use click tracks to keep the tempo from drifting.
  14. pool_of_tears

    pool_of_tears Music Appreciator

    Eastern Iowa
    1973 :)

    in 1971, The Who used a synth tape for Baba & Won't Get Foolded Again.
  15. yesstiles

    yesstiles Forum Resident

    Didn't Macca use a click with Blackbird on The White Album?
  16. Dave D

    Dave D Done!

    Milton, Canada
    No, for the hundredth time. It's his feet tapping.
  17. Metoo

    Metoo Forum Hall Of Fame

    Spain (EU)
  18. Expectant One

    Expectant One Well-Known Member

    Really? I thought that was a metronome.
  19. dumangl

    dumangl Forum Resident

    I have the drum track for The Beach Boys - "It's About Time" and a metronome or some clicking device was used for timing. It's very apparent before, during pauses and after the track ends. This was in 1970.
  20. Expectant One

    Expectant One Well-Known Member

    I checked Songfacts, and one fact said: "According to the video The Complete Beatles, the tap was not a foot or metronome - the Master was intentionally scratched. If you listen closely you will notice that is sounds like a scratch on a record."

    I haven't a clue whether this is true, though.
  21. rewind1964

    rewind1964 Active Member

    Raleigh, NC USA
    I had read in the booklet for Paul Revere & the Raiders "Essential Ride" that Terry Melcher used a click track for "Him or Me" in 1967 and said that this was during the early days of click tracks.

    Whether or not click tracks existed back then in '67, one could have tape looped the clicking of sticks for the drummer to keep time with.
  22. kwadguy

    kwadguy Forum Resident

    Cambridge, MA
    The Turtles talk about playing to a click track when they recorded the theme song to "Guide for the Married Man" in the '60s.
  23. Dave D

    Dave D Done!

    Milton, Canada
  24. Metoo

    Metoo Forum Hall Of Fame

    Spain (EU)
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