I Can't Live With You (4:34)

Cover of Innuendo

From Innuendo and 4 other releases

“I Can’t Live with You” was originally written for Brian May’s first solo album, but was instead given to Queen for release on 1991’s Innuendo.

May “gave” the song to the band after seeing how fond his bandmates Taylor, Deacon, and Mercury were of the track. Drums were programmed on synthesizer by May, and the keyboard-pads were added by the producer. An alternative version of this song appeared on the 1997 compilation album Queen Rocks, billed as the “‘97 Rocks Retake”. The “Queen Rocks” version was said to be more along the lines of how May and Taylor originally wanted the track to sound, with a harder, guitar-driven rock edge.

Interviews with Queen:

Brian May - August 1991, Guitar World:

“As time goes by I find I’m more concerned with the lyrics than ever. A lot of people say you can only create when you’re in pain. But when I was really in pain, I couldn’t create anything. I couldn’t even get out of bed. When you’re climbing out and beginning to get things in the right boxes again, that’s when you can put it into music. There’s quite a bit of that sort of thing on this album. There’s some in ‘I Can’t Live With You’; it’s very personal, but I tried not to make it autobiographical because that narrows things too much. I tried to express it in a form that everyone can relate to.”

“”For some reason, ‘I Can’t Live With You’ was almost impossible to mix. It was one of those things where you put all the faders up and it sounds pretty good, and you think, ‘We’ll work on this for a couple of hours.’ Then it gets worse and worse and worse. We kept going back to the rough mix. It’s got an atmosphere to it. I think it sounds so special because we kept a lot of the demo stuff on it.

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Albums featuring this track (5)

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