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Today, 24 November, marks 29 years to the day since the death of one of music's all-time greats.

Freddie Mercury, frontman of rockers Queen, was idolised by legions of fans for the passion in his voice, his lyrical brilliance and on-stage energy.

And Freddie's death in 1991 at the age of 45, just 24 hours after he had told fans of his Aids diagnosis, made shockwaves around the world.

Before his untimely death, the star had kept his diagnosis between himself and a tightly knit group of friends, including Sir Elton John.

So when he got up on stage during the BRITs in 1990, fans had no idea that was living with the cruel disease as they were taken aback by his gaunt appearance.

Freddie continued to record music between the BRITs and his death, but his ill health meant he had to spend more and more time at home.

Freddie's final public appearance was at the BRITs in 1990
(Image: ITV)

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Queen were recognised that year with the Outstanding Contribution to British Music Award.

And the band were surprised by a video montage of big names in the music industry, all of whom paid tribute to their brilliance.

"Freddie is a one-off," remarked Phil Collins. "You don't get too many like him."

Sir Elton joked: "If you ask Freddie how much a pint of milk is, forget it. He'd be able to tell you the price of nail lacquer."

Stars paid tribute to the band during the ceremony
(Image: ITV)

Freddie and the band's performances were legendary
(Image: Getty Images)

Sir Paul McCartney branded him "King Mercury", to which Freddie laughed: "Long may she reign."

Bandmate and guitarist Brian May, who these days is involved with Aids charities, stepped up to the podium to give an emotional speech.

He said: "On behalf of the group I'd like to say thank you very much to everyone in the industry – and, perhaps more importantly, outside the industry – who stuck behind us all these years, because in doing so you gave us a lot of freedom to pursue what we loosely call our art to any extent we felt like at the time and to go out on a lot of strange limbs which seemed very precarious at the time, but we didn't quite fall off.

Their live shows were renowned for their energy
(Image: Michael Ochs Archives)

Elton recently opened up on his friend's final days before his death

"And finally to get to the point where this happens to us, which is great."

And as the band left the stage, Freddie uttered his last words to fans into the mic: "Thank you… goodnight."

Elton recently opened up about Freddie's final days in his memoir, writing: "He was too frail to get out of bed, he was losing his sight, his body was covered in Kaposi's sarcoma lesions, and yet he was still definitely Freddie, gossiping away, completely outrageous.

"I couldn't work out whether he didn't realise how close to death he was or if he knew perfectly well but was determined not to let what was happening to him stop him being himself."