Queen - Under Pressure




"Under Pressure" is a song by the British rock band Queen and singer David Bowie. Originally released as a single in October 1981, it was later included on Queen's 1982 album Hot Space. The song reached number one on the UK Singles Chart, becoming Queen's second number-one hit in their home country and Bowie's third, and also charted in the top 10 in more than ten countries.


The song has been described as a "monster rock track that stood out" on the Hot Space album, as well as "an incredibly powerful and poignant pop song". "Under Pressure" was listed at number 31 on VH1's 100 Greatest Songs of the '80s, and voted the second best collaboration of all time in a poll by Rolling Stone magazine. In 2021 it was ranked number 429 on Rolling Stone's list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. It was played live at every Queen concert from 1981 until the end of the band's touring career in 1986. Live recordings appear on the Queen live albums Queen Rock Montreal and Live at Wembley '86.


The song was included on some editions of Queen's first Greatest Hits compilations, such as the original 1981 Elektra release in North America. It is included on the band's compilation albums Greatest Hits II, Classic Queen, and Absolute Greatest as well as Bowie compilations such as Best of Bowie (2002), The Platinum Collection (2005), Nothing Has Changed (2014), Legacy (2016), and Re:Call 3 (2017).


"Under Pressure" was sampled by American rapper Vanilla Ice for his 1990 single "Ice Ice Baby". Vanilla Ice initially did not credit Bowie or Queen for the sample, resulting in a lawsuit that gave Bowie and Queen songwriting credit. The song has been covered by the American rock bands My Chemical Romance and the Used, and singer Shawn Mendes, whose version featured singer Teddy Geiger. Xiu Xiu also covered the song with Swans frontman Michael Gira, a version that was included on Xiu Xiu's 2008 album Women as Lovers.