‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ is five minutes 55 seconds long, which got me thinking. Calum Galleitch, who knows, says: ‘You can get about six minutes on to one side; if you make compromises you can extend it – the limit is about nine or 10. There’s not an exact cut-off – we probably don’t have the skills today to press records like that.’
- ‘Like a Rolling Stone’ by Bob Dylan (6min 13sec, 1965). Nominated by Calum Galleitch.
- ‘MacArthur Park’ by Richard Harris (7min 21sec, 1968) and Donna Summer (6min 28sec, 1978). Thanks to Tim Mickleburgh.
- ‘Hey Jude’ by The Beatles (7min 11sec, 1968). Suggested by Mitchell Stirling.
- ‘Sympathy for the Devil’ by the Rolling Stones, album track 1968 but released as a single in continental Europe (6min 18sec, 1973). Nominated by Ian Moss.
- ‘O Superman’ by Laurie Anderson (8min 21sec, 1981). From Chris Gibbon.
- ‘Mama’ by Genesis (6min 7sec, 1983).
- ‘I’m Not in Love’ by 10CC (6min 10sec, 1975).
- ‘November Rain’ by Guns N’Roses (8min 53sec, 1992). From Richard Tolbart and Luke Mussa.
- ‘Hallelujah’ Leonard Cohen’s 1984 version is 4min 36sec, but Jeff Buckley’s (2007) is 6min 53sec. From Moyeen Islam.
- ‘Belfast Child’ by Simple Minds (6min 39sec, 1989). Another from Tim Mickleburgh. Nominated by Jon Sopel.
Originally published in the Independent on 8th February 2015