Queen: We Are The Champions Meaning
Song Released: 1977
We Are The Champions Lyrics
Time after time -
I’ve done my sentence
But committed no crime -
And bad mistakes
I’ve made a few
I’ve had my share of sand kicked in my face -
But I’ve come through
We are the champions - my friends
And we’ll keep...
SquareEagle Jun 12th, 2007 6:45pm report
While the person above may be right, in that it is about Queen's fight to the top, I feel that it is more of a victory anthem. NOT a SPORTS anthem, but a VICTORY anthem. It's celebrating a victory of any kind, and that victory was obtained by those involved sticking together and fighting it out until they couldn't fight anymore.
anonymous Jul 2nd, 2007 7:28am report
Freddie mercury said "I was thinking about football when I wrote it. I wanted a participation song, something that the fans could latch on to. Of course, I've given it more theatrical subtlety than an ordinary football chant. I suppose it could also be construed as my version of "I Did It My Way." We have made it, and it certainly wasn't easy. No bed of roses as the song says. And it's still not easy."
anonymous Jan 23rd, 2007 1:55am report
This song is actually about queen themselves.. I can't believe you don't understand it.
I've taken my bows, and my curtains calls
you brought me fame and fortune and everything that goes with it, I thank you all
But it's been no bed of roses, no pleasure cruise
This is about Queen's struggle to the top
anonymous Aug 3rd, 8:43am report
We Are The Champions is an anthem. It exudes victory and triumph and acknowledges the struggle that comes with achieving glory. Queen were always underrated, counted out, or outright looked down upon by the media and the press (especially during the 1970's) and to have taken the world by storm with the success of Sheer Heart Attack (1974) and A Night At The Opera (1975) must have meant the world to the members of Queen, ESPECIALLY Freddie.
I always felt like Freddie had a bit of a chip on his shoulder during the early years, as it seems for most of his career the odds were stacked against the success of Mercury and Queen as a whole. The band formed very, very early in the 1970's and despite getting into the studio by the end of 1972 and working their butts off they had to wait until mid-73 to get Queen I onto the shelves. Queen II was finished almost immediately after and the band was handed yet ANOTHER DELAY. Queen's approach to this was to literally take several of the songs from the delayed album and add them to their shows.
On Sheer Heart Attack and Opera, songs like Flick Of The Wrist and Death On Two legs give you a sense of the attitude Mercury had towards Queen's management and maybe the industry as a whole to that point. In hindsight, it's ridiculous seeing a band producing music that dynamic with an insanely talented and vibrant live presence being pushed aside as much as Queen was. By the time of We Are The Champions' release in late 1977, Queen had done everything possible to silence their critics. They had attained a near perpetual spot atop the charts from 1975 to 1978, and were back on top in 1980 with the singles from The Game.
We Are The Champions was written by Mercury in '75. I suppose it was likely written after A Night At The Opera was recorded and perhaps was deemed too arrogant (which is how he would later describe the song) for inclusion on A Day At The Races in 1976. This time period would have been when Queen really did overcome all the odds and became a permenant staple in rock (and really, all) music. Queen was ready to disband if A Night At The Opera flopped, and instead it was rightly recognized as one of the greatest albums of all time. Champions would be a rightful bit of indulgence in all the hard work those guys put in from 72 to 75 paying off.
The song had to wait two years before it got its own spot soaring near the top of the charts, but I'm sure everyone who heard it at the time knew exactly how appropriate it was.
As for the people saying it's about AIDS or coming out, I'd have to firstly point to the timing to shoot those down. In 1975, Mercury was still going quite strong with Mary Austin (his relationship with her ended when he came out as bisexual to her sometime in 1977, I believe). From what I can remember, Freddie had proposed to Mary as late as 1976. I am quite sure he did not contract the HIV virus until the start of the next decade, when he was at the top of his invincible streak of doing whatever it was he wanted.
The song can and should be used for any struggle which somebody fights to the bitter end and beyond for. I think that's what it's about. Freddie, John, Brian and Roger fought HARD for YEARS before being rewarded properly (even still, it would be like 20 more years before Queen was given its proper recognition by the press). The success of their albums and singles and the growth of their fanbase around 1975, to me seem to be the most direct source for the triumphant backbone of this song.
The rest would be a bit of anthemic flair (News Of The World contained a few notable Queen anthems) and the classic Freddie touch he put in all their songs.
anonymous Jun 20th, 6:45pm report
I like to think the champion mean the old fighter who is ready to defend and fight for his ideal or cause. Instead of the usual interpretation of victory. To me is a inspiring song to not give up.
But it's maybe just me
anonymous May 25th, 5:34am report
Freddie Mercury once called We Are The Champions "the most arrogant and egotistical song I've ever written" - whatever its utility as a football chant etc., it is first and foremost about his own quest for musical glory. If you ever watch a video of Queen performing We Are The Champions live, you will notice that Freddie Mercury always changes his singing style when he gets to "You've brought me fame and fortune and everything that goes with it, I thank you all!" - sometimes dropping into a speaking voice, other times boldly shouting it, directly to the audience, who then roar with approval as he makes a gesture of acknowledgement in their direction. Showing that unlike the artistic narratorial "I" of most songs (even those written in reflection of a singer's true feelings), he intended "I thank you all" as his own actual, real-world, self, addressing his fans directly. At Live Aid he spoke the words in a subdued tone, apparently deferring to the higher purpose of the show (and to the fact that it was not a Queen concert as such) - and still got the usual cheer, which he acknowledged with a small wave of his hand. Whatever else might be said about Freddie Mercury, he was completely untroubled by false modesty, once famously stating "I won't be a rock star; I will be a legend." When he sang "I consider it a challenge before the whole human race, and I ain't gonna lose," he was dead serious. And he backed it up.
anonymous Jan 11th, 2014 1:07pm report
"I consider it a challenge before the whole
And I ain't gonna lose."
What else could it be? Mercury was gay, this was what started it all off for gay rights.
anonymous Jul 8th, 2012 7:10am report
It's about perseverance in the face of adversity. When feeling defeated it's often easy to give up, but he encourages us to push on through. He doesn't compare a championship or defeat to a race where we must compete with others, but, rather defines what a champion really means...to rise above your bad mistakes by learning from them, pick yourself up when you fall, and when you feel as though you are completely alone to face troubles that seem much bigger than yourself, the strength to get through such things lies within. A triumphant and inspirational song that surpasses the ages, for sure!
anonymous Jul 8th, 2012 7:54am report
Actually there was a fight that went in between queen and a goth band in England In the early 1900's. The goth band said that they will always be famous and that rock will eventually die out. Well the fight was just a verbal public one but queen wrote this in retaliation to the insults thrown at them. The song says that they are the champions as in they will never die out and the words my friend was a direct comment to the goth band leader. When it says mud on your face you big disgrace it's talking about the fashion of the goth band
anonymous Jun 23rd, 2012 6:00pm report
He fought hard for something, maybe, not very 100% sure, and he finally got it. He went through lots to get it......And HE IS THE CHAMPION. He won the battle!
It wasn't an easy fight either, as the lyrics say.
anonymous Jun 11th, 2012 6:19pm report
OKAY. HERE IS THE INDISPUTABLE LOWDOWN: QUEEN'S "WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS", in the way I interpret it, is based on the 60s hippies fight for freedom, free love, and peace. The rise of those who attended Woodstock or what not. :) They "served their time", but they "did no crime" --> why did the 60s teens/hippies have to face the wrath of the police for merely fighting for their rights? Exactly. Queen's song historically embodies the 60s movement.
anonymous Aug 5th, 2011 8:20pm report
The Champion is a pub in Notting Hill Gate London where freddie mercury used to drink.
anonymous Aug 4th, 2011 8:28am report
Whatever its meaning, it's pretty good - Victory, Gay, Football; Cricket; Politics; Beating the recession; Buying a house; Getting married; getting divorced; loosing weight; Achievement; Struggling and making it; Getting over sickness or some big issue - it's just good and you can interpret it to suit your particular situation.
Thanks Freddie et al.
canutility May 26th, 2010 5:19am report
It is just a pure victory song, no sarcasm here -
"no time for losers" it says and if you feel like this is nasty, I agree,-- since mercury is not randy newman, who also wrote nasty lyrics, but always with a good dose of self-reflection and sarcasm!
i think as serious as freddie mercurie´s "hard times" to "reach the top", you should take this whole song -
--feel it when your favourite sport-team wins, but don´t think about it!
anonymous Mar 11th, 2010 3:13pm report
Actually the song has to do with the fact that Freddie Mercury is gay. It's a gay anthem. Look harder for the meaning.
anonymous Feb 9th, 2010 2:53pm report
In France, it's a song about singing mushrooms... i apologize!!! sorry... i take it all back... excusez moi... i think he meant soccer... it fits soccer to a tea... but it also could apply to anyone who beats the odds through perserverence... and grit! it really suits soccer well, though...
More Queen song meanings »
Submit Your Interpretation
Related Blog Posts
|Gold on the Ceiling||anonymous|
|Happy Little Pill||anonymous|
|Stay Up Late||anonymous|
|I Hate You, Don't Leave Me||anonymous|
|All About That Bass||anonymous|