May wrote down the rest of the words as well as the melody, and added a bridge with a chord sequence inspired by Pachelbel's Canon. Demo versions featured May singing, having to sing some parts in falsetto because they were too high.
When Brian May presented the final demo to Mercury, he had doubts that Mercury would be physically capable of singing the song's highly demanding vocal line, due to the extent of his illness at the time. To May's surprise, when the time came to record the vocals, Mercury consumed a measure of vodka and said "I'll fucking do it, darling!
Producer David Richards suggested the key-shift in the second verse. At the beginning, it was just this chord sequence, but I had this strange feeling that it could be somehow important, and I got very impassioned and went and beavered away at it.
I sat down with Freddie, and we decided what the theme should be and wrote the first verse. It's a long story, that song, but I always felt it would be important because we were dealing with things that were hard to talk about at the time, but in the world of music, you could do it. Thinly disguised tragedy ahead is announced. In the end, the text refers to the determination, the furious desire to live "I have to find the will to carry on with the show" in spite of vanishing strength "inside my heart is breaking, my make-up may be flaking".
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No matter how ill Freddie felt, he never grumbled to anyone or sought sympathy of any kind. It was his battle, no one else's, and he always wore a brave face against the ever-increasing odds against him.
The music video instead consisted of a montage of clips spanning Queen's music videos from toas a precursor to the imminent release of the band's Greatest Hits II album spanning that period. The following month, Mercury finally announced that he was suffering from AIDS, and he died barely 24 hours after this announcement.