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Elton John

Today we want to tell you 55 facts (Hamsa Hamsa) about the singer and creator Elton John:

(Photo: Greg Gorman)

1. He was born on 25/3/1947 as Reginald Kenneth Dwight, in the town of Pinner, Middlesex England.

2. Elton had a rare and innate musical talent. He started playing the piano at a very young age at his grandmother's house and within a year he already knew how to play "The Skater's Waltz" by Winifred Atwell only by hearing.

3. His mother and grandmother recognized the talent and already at the age of 7 enrolled him in piano lessons.

4. At just 11 years old, Elton received a scholarship to the Royal Academy of Music in London. One of his teachers noted that he had an absolute hearing and a phenomenal memory and that he was able to play an entire piece by "Handel" after hearing it only once.

5. He did not have a happy childhood. His father who was a soldier in the Royal Air Force hardly spent time with him in the few times he was already at home. He always criticized him, did not praise and even objected to John developing a musical career.

6. At the age of 14 his parents divorced and his mother married a painter who was the complete opposite of his biological father. Elton lived at home with his stepfather and mother, even after becoming a successful artist. He wrote a large part of his hits there, early in his career.

(Photo: Terry O'Neill)

7. His mother and stepfather supported Elton and even helped him get his first pub appearances. That was when Elton was only 15, he played mostly covers there.

8. He took his stage name from two members of the band "Bluesology" which he formed in 1962 when he was only 15 years old. Saxophonist Elton Dean and singer Long John Baldry. The middle name - Hercules, he took from the name of the horse from the British TV series "Steptoe and Son". By the way, Singer Long John Baldry was also the theme of the song "Someone Saved My Life Tonight" written by Elton.

9. He met his writing partner Bernie Taupin in 1967 after they both responded to an ad inviting musicians to write songs for various artists. For two years they collaborated on writing nationalist songs like "Lulu", while at the same time John worked as a hired musician for bands like "The Hollies" and "The Scaffold".

10. In 1967 he was hired to replace "Simon Dupree and the Big Sound" (the first incarnation of "Gentle Giant") keyboardist, on the band's tour of Scotland. He was almost recruited as a regular member of the band, but they politely rejected any attempt to record his work except "I'm Going Home", which was released as a B-side.

11. In 1968, Elton John auditioned for the emerging "King Crimson" band. He did not pass the audition.

12. In 1969 Elton released his debut album "Empty Sky".

13. By 1970 he had already achieved his first hit "Your Song" which was taken from his second album named after him - "Elton John".

14. That same year he released his third album "Tumbleweed Connection" which included Wild West-style arrangements. Although the album did not include hits it received good reviews and was consistently rated among listeners as one of the favorite albums.

15. In 1971 he released his fourth studio album "Madman Across The Water" featuring the hits "Levon" and "Tiny Dancer" in which Elton first collaborates with legendary percussionist Ray Cooper and who also features keyboardist Rick Wakeman.

16. In 1972 he released the album "Honky Château" which included the hits "Rocket Man" and "Honky Cat". This is the first album where guitarist Davey Johnstone who played a number of songs on the previous album joined as a regular member of the band.

17. The 1970s continued to smile at Elton's face and albums, he released in 1973 "Don't Shoot Me I'm Only the Piano Player" which included a change of style towards glam rock and from which the hits "Daniel" and "Crocodile Rock" were released as well as the double masterpiece album "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road", which included the songs "Candle in the Wind", "Saturday Night's Alright for Fighting" and "Bennie and the Jets" and of course the theme song.

18. In 1974 Elton released the album "Caribou" which included the hits "Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me" and "The Bitch is Back", the album was recorded within 9 days.

19. That same year Elton was featured on John Lennon's album "Walls and Bridges". Together they performed the songs "Whatever Gets You Thru The Night" and "Surprise Surprise (Sweet Bird of Paradox)".

20. Elton and Lennon made a bet on the song "Whatever Gets You Thru The Night". Elton told Lennon that if the song reached number one he would have to return the favor and perform with him. It did happen and Lennon joined Elton's show performing three Beatles songs including two - "Lucy In the Sky With Diamonds" and "I Saw Her Standing There". It was also Lennon's last appearance in front of an audience.

21. In 1975 he appeared as the "Pinball Wizard" in the cult film "Tommy" based on the rock opera "The Who".

22. That same year he was also hospitalized for an overdose of cocaine.

23. It was a busy year for Elton during which he released two albums: "Captain Fantastic" and the "Brown Dirt Cowboy" which was written as an autobiographical story about the early days of the career of Elton and his partner Bernie, another album was "Rock of the Westies".

24. In 1976 John entered a period of decline in his career. It started with the double album "Blue Moves" which received negative reviews, and it continued with a sequence of albums in different and weird styles like disco, which did not issue hits and did not get good reviews. At the same time, Elton also replaced his regular musicians and stopped collaborating with his writing partner Bernie Taupin and even with producer Gus Dudgeon with whom he worked throughout his career.

25. In 1979, Elton became the first Western artist to appear in the Soviet Union.

26. In 1983 Elton returned to "business" with the album "Too Low for Zero". He re-collaborated with Bernie Taupin and the band that worked with him in the beginning and returned to star in headlines with big hits like "I Guess That's Why They Call It the Blues" and "I'm Still Standing". The album became his best-selling album in the 1980s.

27. The one who plays the harmonica on one of the hits from the album "I Guess That's Why They Call It the Blues" is none other than Stevie Wonder.

28. Elton opened the 1990s with alcohol, drug,s and bulimia rehab treatments.

29. In 1992 he released his first post-rehab album - "The One". This album brought him back to the forefront of the stage and to the top of the charts. On the album, David Gilmour participated in guitar playing the song "Understanding Women".

30. That same year, Elton participated in the MTV Awards performing the theme song from the album. He also joined the band "Guns N 'Roses" playing piano in the song "November Rain". There was an unfortunate event there that we think Elton would like to forget.

31. In 2000, Elton wrote the music for the musical "Aida" based on Vardi's opera. The musical was a huge success and won Elton a Tony Award and a Grammy.

32. Elton also wrote the music for the musical based on the movie "Billy Elliot". The musical called "Billy Elliot the Musical" was first staged in 2005 and has won ten Tony Awards including Best Musical.

33. In 2001, Elton released the album "Songs from the West Coast", which marked his return to the roots with a focus on the piano, that characterized him at the beginning of his career. The album featured Stevie Wonder playing harmonica and clavient and released the hit "I Want Love" among other things.

34. In 2010 he released an excellent album along with musician Leon Russell.

35. Elton holds numerous awards and titles. In 1995 he received the title of "Officer of the Order of the British Empire", which is the third highest rank in the United Kingdom.

36. In 1998 he was crowned by Queen Elizabeth as a knight and has since held the title of "Sir Elton John".

37. In 1992 Elton was inducted into the Writers Hall of Fame and in 1994 he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

38. Elton John has a huge collection of thousands of glasses with which he used to perform and stun the audience time and time again. It is interesting to note that when Elton started with the spectacle craze, he did not remember them at all and had no vision problems. It started as a tribute to one of his idols in his youth - Buddy Holly.

39. He is also known for the most glittering and angular costumes with which he appeared on stage, including the costumes of Donald Duck and the Statue of Liberty.

(Photo: Terry O'Neill)

40. He is the godfather of several children of celebrities, including Sean Lennon the son of John Lennon and Yoko Ono as well as Brooklyn and Romeo the children of Victoria and David Beckham.

41. Elton had a long-running quarrel with Madonna, they settled in 2012.

42. He also does not get along with Rod Stewart.

43. On the other hand, he was very close to Freddie Mercury. After Mercury's death, he founded the "Elton John AIDS Foundation", which raised more than $ 300 million for AIDS research. He was also one of the main guests at the tribute show to Freddie after his death.

44. Elton John has numerous collaborations with various artists in almost every field in music, even from genres like rap and hip hop where he has collaborated with artists such as Eminem, Tupac Shakur and Kanye West.

45. Among the interesting collaborations are "Alice in Chains", where Elton participates in the song "Black Gives Way to Blue" which was dedicated to singer Layne Staley, as well as with Steven Wilson on his album "The Future Bites" from 2021 where Elton reads a list Shopping.

46. ​​He also participates in the theme song from Ozzy Osbourne's "Ordinary Man" album released in 2020.

47. Elton is one of the most successful singers in music. His albums have sold over 300 million copies. Making him one of the best-selling musicians of all time.

48. He is also largely responsible for preserving the place of the piano as a central and leading instrument in rock and roll music.

49. Elton John has released over the course of his career 30 studio albums to date as a solo artist, excluding guest appearances and collaborations.

50. In addition, he has written nine different soundtracks and the most famous among them is the soundtrack of the movie "The Lion King" from 1994 when the song "Can You Feel the Love Tonight" even won an Oscar.

51. He is also one of the greatest hit producers in the history of music. He has nearly 60 songs that entered the top 40 in the sales charts of which seven reached number one in the UK and another nine went to number one in the US.

52. Elton entered the "Guinness Book of Records" for the single best-selling single of all time - "Candle in the Wind" 1997 which sold more than 33 million copies. The song was originally written as a tribute to Marilyn Monroe, but in a version released in 1997 it was dedicated, after a minor change in lyrics, to Princess Diana after her death.

53. He also managed to put 7 consecutive albums in first place in the US sales chart.

54. He is the richest singer in the UK after Paul McCartney.

55. During his career he has made over 3500 appearances. It's something like performing for 10 consecutive years night after night.

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