Music News

Flashback: Elton John makes his American live debut

8/23/2013

It was 43 years ago Sunday night (August 25th, 1970) that Elton John made his U.S. concert debut. Elton was promoting his self-titled second album and was booked into L.A.'s famed Troubadour club for a five-night stand. Elton was brought on stage by Neil Diamond, who said in his introduction, "I know the album, and I love the album, and I have no idea what these people are about to do. I want to take my seat and enjoy this with you."

A bearded Elton John took to the stage wearing bell-bottomed jeans and a red shirt with the words "Rock And Roll" spelled out in white letters. Together with bassist Dee Murray and drummer Nigel Olsson, Elton wowed the industry-heavy crowd with an hour-long set that began with "Your Song" and included future classics like "Border Song," "Country Comfort," "Take Me To The Pilot," as well as cover versions of the Beatles' "Get Back" and the Rolling Stones' "Honky Tonk Women."

The next day the Hollywood Reporter wrote about Elton's performance, saying, "He had hardly opened his mouth when it was apparent that he is going to be a very, very big star."

Elton says that from a very early age, his only objective was to work in some facet of the music business: "I honestly feel I couldn't have asked for a better life. I mean, I wanted to be involved in music -- whether it was working in a record store, whether it was working in a publisher's (office), whether it was writing. . . I didn't ever envisage being a singer, that happened by accident, but I just love what I do. As I've grown older, I love to play live much more. I feel much more comfortable with my own self, so being onstage is much more comfortable to me. I don't have to hide behind big glasses and costumes anymore."


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