In 1971, Elton John released his self-titled album, Elton John. The album contained his first hit single, “Your Song”. This was the beginning of a long and successful career for Elton John, which has manifested itself to the point of success where you can see professional Elton concept impersonations in Australia now.
Over the next five decades, Elton John has gone on to release dozens of albums and singles that would become classics. In this retrospective, we will take a look at some of Elton John’s greatest hits and explore the story behind each song.
“Your Song” is a ballad that was written by Elton John and Bernie Taupin. The song is about falling in love and being young and naïve. The lyrics are simple but beautiful, and the melody is catchy and memorable. “Your Song” was an instant success when it was released, reaching the top ten in several countries. It remains one of Elton John’s most popular songs and is often considered his signature song.
“Rocket Man”, released in 1972, is a song about a man who is an astronaut and is homesick for Earth. The lyrics were inspired by the short story “The Rocket Man” by Ray Bradbury.
Bennie and the Jets
The story behind “Bennie and the Jets” is a bit more complicated than the others. Elton John has said that the song was inspired by two different things. The first was an imaginary band that he and Bernie Taupin made up when they were both teenagers. The second was a real-life band called Steel Eye Span that Bernie Taupin saw in a club.
Elton John has said that he wrote the song in about 20 minutes. He has also said that it is one of his favourite songs to perform live. It is a fan favourite as well and is often played at sporting events.
Elton John’s “Crocodile Rock” was released in October 1972 as a single from the album, Don’t Shoot Me I’m Only the Piano Player. The song was written by Bernie Taupin, Elton John’s long-time lyricist, and produced by Gus Dudgeon. It is a tribute to 1950s rock and roll, and pays homage to Elvis Presley, Little Richard, and Buddy Holly.
The song is set in the key of E major and features a Bo Diddley-style beat. The opening line, “I remember when rock was young”, is a reference to the 1958 song “Rock Around the Clock” by Bill Haley & His Comets. The chorus includes the line “Crocodile Rockin’, tonight”. Crocodiles were a popular motif in 1950s rock and roll, appearing on album covers by artists such as Elvis Presley, Bo Diddley, and Jerry Lee Lewis.
Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me
The song “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me” was written by Elton John and Bernie Taupin. It was first released in 1974 and became a hit single in 1991. The song is about two friends who are falling out of love and struggling to stay together, and it’s been covered by everyone from George Michael to Adele. It’s a timeless ballad that speaks to the human experience of love and loss.
Elton John’s 1974 hit “Philadelphia Freedom” was written about tennis player Billie Jean King. The song is an ode to her accomplishments, including winning the Battle of the Sexes tennis match against Bobby Riggs. King was the first female athlete to appear on the cover of Time Magazine and was a driving force behind the creation of the Women’s Tennis Association.
What’s your favourite Elton John song?
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