One of the most personal of Freddie Mercurys possessions, a necklace he wore onstage many times throughout the height of Queens fame in the late 1970s, is up for sale at Ewbanks Auctions
on December 13.
Consigned by Peter Ratty Hince, the head of the bands road crew, who worked with Queen from 1975 to 1986, the fine link, chrome-plated metal necklace adorned the lead singers often naked chest throughout the period dating from their seminal album, A Night At The Opera, and world-beating single Bohemian Rhapsody to the advent of the 1980s and their album Jazz and its hit single Dont Stop Me Now.
Hince, who went on to write about his experiences working for the band in Queen Unseen: My Life with the Greatest Rock Band of the 20th Century, was with Freddie when he composed Crazy Little Thing Called Love and was responsible for making sure that Mercurys stage performances went without a hitch.
The singer, who can be seen wearing the necklace in many photos taken from live performances and promotional shots, would link the necklaces together to make a longer one, and double them around his neck. He usually wore a long and a shorter necklace.
Hince, to whom he eventually gave the necklace, met Queen in 1973 when they were opening for Mott the Hoople and began working full-time for the band in 1975 during the recording of A Night at the Opera, staying on as the head of their road crew until their final concert in 1986.
Queens 1981 Greatest Hits album remains the best-selling album in UK history, while Freddie Mercury, one of the most charismatic frontmen of any band in rock and pop history, is widely credited with leading the most outstanding performance at Live Aid in 1985, said Ewbanks Auctions specialist Alastair McCrea.
As Bohemian Rhapsody, the current Biopic of Mercury, shows, his was a star that outshined all around him, making him one of the most legendary music figures of the entire modern music era. To be able to offer such an iconic possession from such an iconic figure is a rare privilege indeed.
The necklace will feature in Ewbanks Entertainment & Memorabilia auction with an estimate of £2,000 to £4,000.