‘Crazy Little Thing Called Love’ was released in 1979, two years after the US star’s death at the age of 42.
During the latest episode of Queen The Greatest, which looks back on the band’s career, Taylor and May recalled the origins of ‘Crazy Little Thing Called Love’ and its impact on the group.
Talking about trying to change tact with their recording process seven albums in, May said Queen “got into this rather indulgent way of just bowling into the studio with no ideas, or very few ideas, and just doing it from scratch”.
Taylor added: “The first thing we did was ‘Crazy Little Thing…’, and Fred did write the song in the bath in about 10 minutes.”
Speaking about Mercury’s love of Presley, May said: “He was very fond of Elvis, and of Cliff, I have to say. Yeah, Freddie wrote it very quickly and rushed in and put it down with the boys. By the time I got there, it was almost done.
“And I think the sounds that [sound engineer Reinhold] Mack managed to get, these very elemental, very real sounds, ambient sounds in the studio had a big contribution to make. It does sound very authentic, everything about it is sort of like original rock and roll sounding.”
‘Crazy Little Thing Called Love’ went onto be Queen’s first Number One single on the Billboard Hot 100, and reached Number Two on the Official UK Singles Chart.
Earlier this month, May said he thought Mercury would still be playing with Queen if he was alive. The band’s frontman died in 1991 from bronchial pneumonia resulting from AIDS. “The funny thing is I feel more and more that he is kind of with us in a way, maybe I’m getting to be an old romantic, but Freddie is in my day every day,” he added.