“Tonight is a very special night. We’re making history tonight. It’s been a long journey,” a tearful Sir Elton John said Sunday, addressing his sold-out crowd (and fans watching at home via Disney+ livestream) during what wasn’t just the party. The last of his three-night stand at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles. , but his last North American stadium ever to appear.
Elton’s Farewell Yellow Brick Road Tour has been a long ride, in fact: John announced his retirement from touring nearly five years ago, in January 2018. He’s barely stayed out of the limelight since then, essentially becoming the show’s most serious retiree Business. Over the past four years or so, he has released his autobiography, Rocket Manwhich won the Academy Award for Best Original Song; his autobiography, I; And the closing sessions, Pandemic album featuring all-stars Eddie Vedder, Miley Cyrus, Dua Lipa, Lil Nas X, Nicki Minaj, Young Thug, Rina Sawyama, Steve Wonder and Nicks. He also collaborated with Lady Gaga and Ed Sheeran. Co-produce a new musical about Tammy Faye Meisner with Jake Shears of Scissor Sisters and a stage adaptation of Satan wears purdah with Chyna Top. and even coaxing Britney Spears out of retirement registration. And, of course, he’s played a whopping 272 concerts, including one on the White House lawn.
So, as the old saying goes: How do we miss him if he’s not gone? As it turns out, we’ll miss Elton very, very much. On Sunday, when he returned to Dodger Stadium—the site of two of his most historic concerts—the 75-year-old was still playing at his peak power around 1975, right from the moment the thrilling sounds of the piano keys. Opened “Bennie and the Jets” exhibition. Only once during the marathon set—when he indulged melodramatically at his piano, zigzagging, after jamming to an epic, extended version of one of his favorite compositions, “Someone Saved My Life Tonight”—did he show any actual sign of human weakness. It seemed incomprehensible that he wouldn’t come back the next night to hit another one from the outfield.
But for two very fleeting hours, John delighted his audience of Elton’s cosplayers – superstar fans who were all dressed in dazzling Dodgers uniforms, oversized rhinestone sunglasses, “I’m still standing” summer jumpsuits and porkpie hats, enough sequins to fill Joan’s shop. All large Fabric & Crafts and, in at least one case, a Donald Duck costume exactly like the one John wore in Central Park in 1980. Her wings are huge with red feathers that probably block the view of half the class behind her.) “Thank you for dressing up.” “It makes me so happy when I see you all in costume,” Elton said near the end of his concert as he donned his lavish third outfit of the night, a bejeweled Dodgers bathrobe.
Elton kept his banter theatrical — he didn’t mention the tragic shooting the night before at LGBTQ+ nightpot Club Q in Colorado or the horrific attack on a couple in the Dodger Stadium parking lot on his show Saturday. Instead, he expresses his love for Los Angeles, saying, “I came here for the first time, to America, in 1970—to Los Angeles, the City of Angels,” recalling how Los Angeles Times Music critic Robert Hilburn’s rave review of his now-legendary Hollywood show The Troubadour changed his life. “I will never forget it…. I became successful first in America. Without America, I wouldn’t be here.” He also recalled being “surprised” early in his career when Aretha Franklin covered his hit “Border Song”, and romantically introducing his longtime songwriting partner, Bernie Taupin.
“We’ve been writing together since 1967, and we love each other more than ever. He’s an amazing guy,” Elton gushed, embracing Tobin and telling him, “I love you. Thanks for all the gifts.” Tobin then declared John “the greatest man on the planet,” while the audience cheered in agreement.
Taupin wasn’t the only special guest in this love affair. Brandi Carlisle joined in on “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me” (dedicated to late band members Jon Lopresti, Dee Murray, Roger Pope, Jay Babel, and Bob Birch), donning her Elton-defying “Rocket” cosplay costume. 1″ in blue/grey/white and looking great at the moment. (When Carlisle performed at John’s annual Oscars viewing earlier this year, she told the A-list crowd that John “shaped the way I walk in the world as an artist.”) Keke Dee, who was there with John’s first Dodger stadium show 47 years ago Years out, they’re out for their classic duet “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart,” and Dua Lipa collaborated with Elton on 2021’s “Cold Heart,” which just won Collaboration of the Year honors at the American Music Awards just a few miles away.
“I can’t tell you how proud I am, at the age of 75, to have my number one record all over the world,” John declared as Dua left the stage, also exclaiming the recent success of his collaboration with Britney Spears, “Hold Me Close.” This seemed like a set-up for Britney’s surprise cameo…but then again, no. Instead, John played his first single, “Your Song,” though the concert-goers didn’t seem too disappointed. (They heard a piped “Hold Me Closer” when it served as Elton’s exit music at the end of the evening.)
While this was Jon’s last show in America, he won’t be away from the stage for long: The Farewell Yellow Brick Road Tour resumes in January with dates in Australia and New Zealand, before continuing in Britain and Europe and finally wrapping up in Sweden in July 2023. And then, He did not rule out holding small-scale concerts or one-off occasional parties. “What I love more than anything else is playing live,” he assured the Dodger Stadium crowd on Sunday. However, he seemed so relieved with his decision to ditch his grueling touring schedule that he brought out his husband, David Furnish, and their sons, Elijah and Zachary, to remind the crowd that the reason he’s retiring is to spend more quality time with family.
“I don’t really look back much,” Elton told Yahoo Entertainment in 2018. “But when I do, you’re reminded of what you did. I lived 10 years in one year. I just had fun. I mean, there were a lot of great things. In a year 1970, if you’d told me I’d be sitting here… talking about a farewell tour, I would’ve said, “You’re crazy!” But then, 10 years ago, if I’d said I had kids — two kids — I’d have said, “You’re crazy.” That’s my way of life. .I’m willing to let it develop as it should. I’ve had the most amazing career. It won’t stop.”
Elton John’s complete setlist for Dodger Stadium on November 20 was:
Penny and the planes
I guess that’s why they call it the blues
Have mercy on the criminal
Take me to the pilot
Someone saved my life tonight
Candle in the wind
Funeral of a Friend / Bleeding Love
Burn the job
sad songs (say a lot)
Excuse me, looks like the hardest
Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me (with Brandi Carlile)
The bitch is back
I’m still standing
Don’t Break My Heart (with Kiki D)
Saturday night is fine for fighting
Cold Heart (with Dua Lipa)
Goodbye, yellow cobblestone road
Read more from Yahoo Entertainment:
Elton John remembers surprising Iggy Pop on stage – in a gorilla costume
Elton John talks farewell tour, focus on family: ‘I can’t go on forever’
Taron Egerton on the Elton John song that changed his life
‘Rocketman’ star Taron Egerton on gay storyline: ‘I’m so proud our movie puts him front and center’
Brandi Carlile honors Ryan White on stage for Elton John’s Oscars: ‘I don’t take offense standing here’
Bernie Taupin on an Embarrassing But Important Scene for “Rocketman”: “It Definitely Happened”
Elton John guitarist Davey Johnston on how John Lennon’s recent public performance led to his reconciliation with Yoko Ono: “It was very special for them”
Elton John’s Warning While Taking Advantage of Coronavirus: “Not long ago, there was another infectious disease that was ignored”
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