Freddie Mercury's birthday would have been yesterday, his 65th. It's a fascinating but ultimately depressing exercise to imagine what could have been; it's easy to imagine his full-throated, charismatic stage persona relevant today (just look at Queen's disproportionate popularity outside classic-rock-only fans), and the rest of the band's kept busy to various degrees.

No surprise, then, that the tributes have rushed in. Queen's YouTube channel has contributions from Young the Giant, Patrick Stump, Katy Perry(?) and Pat Monahan of Train(?!) Unsurprisingly, the Google Doodle is the best, a fantasia of 16-bit art, tigers and cloud trampolines and "Don't Stop Me Now." It's artistically beautiful, stylistically fairly accurate, but for touching, you'll probably want to read bandmate Brian May's tribute on the Google blog:

Freddie made the last person at the back of the furthest stand in a stadium feel that he was connected. He gave people proof that a man could achieve his dreams—made them feel that through him they were overcoming their own shyness, and becoming the powerful figure of their ambitions. And he lived life to the full. He devoured life. He celebrated every minute. And, like a great comet, he left a luminous trail which will sparkle for many a generation to come.