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Queen guitarist Brian May wrote this song, which is about a young man who comes to appreciate women of substantial girth. May told Mojo magazine October 2008: "I wrote it with Fred in mind, as you do especially if you've got a great singer who likes fat bottomed girls… or boys."
This was released as a double A-side single with "Bicycle Race
." The songs ran together on the album, and were often played that way by radio stations. The year before, Queen released "We Will Rock You
" and "We Are The Champions
" as a double A-side. They are still usually played together by radio stations.
Each song has a reference to the other in the lyrics: in "Bicycle Race," a lyric runs: "Fat bottomed girls, they'll be riding today, so look out for those beauties, oh yeah." In "Fat Bottomed Girls" the closing call shouts "get on your bikes and ride!," linking the two songs together.
The cover of the single featured a nude woman riding a bicycle, and was altered after many stored refused to stock it. The new version was the same image with panties drawn over the woman.
This song was covered by Antigone Rising for the 2005 Queen tribute album Killer Queen. (thanks, Rachel - South Point, OH)
The song was used as the opening theme for Morgan Spurlock's 2004 documentary Super Size Me.
This was used in episodes of the US TV shows Nip/Tuck and My Name is Earl, and also in the UK show Father Ted. (thanks, Bertrand - Paris, France, for above 2)
A funny incident involving this song occurred on the Daily Politics show on UK TV in January 2014, when respectable political editor Nick Robinson's iPad suddenly started to play the song midway through a panel discussion between several politicians. Robinson hastily turned the device off before - in his words - "the really embarrassing lyrics start."
This is one of a very small number of Queen songs composed and performed in an alternative tuning to standard. Brian May used a Dropped D tuning for this song.
Surprisingly for such a popular song, it only features on one Queen live compilation from the original lineup: On Fire Live at the Bowl, from Milton Keynes 1982. On the Queen + tours, it has been a regular staple, with both Paul Rogers and Adam Lambert handling the lyrics with gusto. Versions featuring Paul Rogers on vocals appear on Return of the Champions (2005), Super Live in Japan (2006) and Live in Ukraine (2008).
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